We have adopted a concentric approach to the study of Geography at Key Stage 3. This involves a place-orientated structure which we believe forms a firm foundation for the study of the subject at GCSE and A Level.
We start with the local environment and the United Kingdom and then broaden our scope by studying the European Union and then the world. Whilst pupils will all have their own textbook, we use a huge variety of resources and like, wherever possible, to make use of data and information collected by the pupils themselves.
In Year 7, pupils will study the geography of their local area (their journey to school, the site and situation of Taunton, the features and characteristics of the local area etc) before moving on to consider selected aspects of the geography of the United Kingdom, such as settlement, weather and climate, industry and retailing. All pupils take part in a field trip to the Quantock Hills.
In Year 8, we study the geography of the European Union, concentrating particularly on farming, resources (energy and water), coasts, rivers and ice. Pupils will have the opportunity to make detailed studies, through their own research, of the geography of particular countries, for example, France and Sweden. In May, all pupils take part in a field trip to Charmouth.
Geography is the study of our environment and how we interact with it. It is our aim to stimulate pupils’ interest and curiosity in their surroundings and in the variety of human and physical conditions on the Earth’s surface.
We intend to foster pupils’ sense of awe and wonder at the
beauty of the world around them and help them to appreciate that they have a responsibility for the sustainable management of the Earth and its people. Geography is about understanding the world in which we live and we believe that it plays an absolutely essential part in the development of young citizens in the modern world.
Through the study of Geography, pupils will learn to use a variety of important transferable skills. They will learn how to collect meaningful data and how to present it in an accurate and appropriate manner. They will make extensive use of maps at all scales, which is undeniably an extremely important lifelong skill. Pupils will be encouraged to participate in debate and discussion, to formulate their own views, and to show tolerance and understanding of the views of others. Information Technology, and in particular the Internet, presents us with many exciting opportunities especially when conducting research. In addition to classroom-based work, pupils will also be given the opportunity to take part in fieldwork, both locally and further afield. Our approach to teaching the subject of Geography is to build a body of knowledge through a variety of learning experiences. Above all, it is our intention that Geography should be fun!
In Year 9, the final year of Key Stage 3, we broaden our scope to study aspects of global geography. We concentrate particularly on the concept of ‘development’ and pupils will learn about the key characteristics of, and contrasts in, countries deemed to represent different levels of ‘development’. Inevitably, there are many issues worthy of debate when tackling this topic. Pupils will study other aspects of Geography which are particularly applicable to the wider world, such as urbanisation, tectonics (volcanoes and earthquakes) and environmental concerns, such as global warming.