Geography curriculum

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At Dartford Primary Academy, we use the philosophy of the International Baccalaureate (IB) as a framework to provide our children with the tools they need to be lifelong learners. Engaging IB inquiries throughout the school inspire curiosity and a fascination with the world around us, creating enthusiastic geographers. Through the study of geography, learners will develop a strong sense of place and scale, allowing them to become globally aware. A gradually increasing understanding of the processes of human and physical geography and their interconnected nature encourages pupils to participate actively in their community and contribute to solving geographical issues. This studying of geographical issues supports the emotional and ethical development of pupils, while also allowing them to solve problems and show creativity and resourcefulness. Pupils will build up a bank of contextualised location knowledge which will be used throughout life and which provides important cultural capital. In addition to this, pupils acquire the geographical and map skills needed to investigate places around the world. Fieldwork is used, with increasing independence through the school, to encourage enquiry and allow for deeper learning of geographical concepts, knowledge and skills. These skills of enquiry and data analysis, nurtured through their time at Dartford Primary Academy, set pupils up for future education and beyond.

Geography is taught through transdisciplinary inquiries at Dartford Primary Academy as part of the IB Primary Years Programme (PYP). Our key focus documents outline the progression in geography knowledge and skills throughout the school, with specific locational knowledge, map, fieldwork and enquiry skills set out for each year group. In EYFS and KS1, pupils develop the basic contextual knowledge of their local area, Britain and the World which will provide the strong building blocks for the rest of their geography learning. Each KS2 year group explores at least one geographical process in depth, ensuring that the full breadth of the National Curriculum is taught across the school. The topics are arranged to allow pupils to build upon their knowledge from previous years and to create links with this and knowledge from other subjects. Lessons are engaging and provide frequent opportunities for geographical enquiry, allowing pupils to explore topics in depth. We provide challenges that encourage our pupils to embrace and understand the connections between what they learn in lessons and the real world and become critical and reflective thinkers. Incidental geography teaching in other subject lessons is also encouraged to increase pupils’ knowledge and understanding of the world. 

Outcomes in Inquiry books, evidence a broad and balanced geography curriculum and demonstrate children’s acquisition of identified key knowledge. Children will also be able to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding through rich discussions and feedback in the classroom. Children review their successes in achieving the lesson objectives at the end of every session and also refer back to overall termly outcomes that are in the front of their inquiry book for each transdisciplinary theme. These are reviewed periodically throughout the term by the pupils to ensure understanding and to identify gaps that need to be filled. At Dartford Primary Academy, we aim to use teachers’ assessment, diagnostic assessments and effective real time feedback to ensure all pupils progress. Through a well-planned curriculum, linked to the transdisciplinary themes, we will ensure that our children have embedded the knowledge and skills that they need to be successful members of society. 

By the time children leave Dartford Primary Academy they will: 

  • Have a general knowledge of the world map and a detailed knowledge of the countries and major cities of Europe, North and South America and their main features.
  • Have an excellent understanding of the main human and physical processes and features and how they are interconnected. 
  • Have an extensive base of geographical knowledge and vocabulary. 
  • Be fluent in complex, geographical enquiry and the ability to apply questioning skills and use effective analytical and presentational techniques. – Be proficient in basic fieldwork and other geographical skills and techniques, including basic GIS. 
  • Be proficient in the use of OS maps. 
  • Have a passion for and commitment to the subject, and a real sense of curiosity to find out about the world and the people who live there.
  • Have the ability to express well-balanced opinions, rooted in very good knowledge and understanding about current and contemporary issues in society and the environment.