The Purbeck School Geography Curriculum
Why Study Geography at The Purbeck School?
Geography at The Purbeck School encourages students to investigate and delve deeper into some of the issues which affect our everyday lives. Students are encouraged to not only develop their knowledge of important geographical themes such as climate change and plate tectonics, but also to utilise vital learning skills such as independence, working with others and problem solving. Field trips are seen as an excellent way for students to observe processes and theories, which they have studied within lessons, in a wider geographical context. Students have the opportunity to study their local regions, as well as opportunities further afield. Students are encouraged to question accepted geographical theories and increase awareness of issues which will be of global importance, through their engagement in an exciting curriculum with strong cross-curricular links. GCSE Geography is a popular option subject amongst students, given the wide variety of topics which are covered in a clear and stimulating way. Students cover such modules as ‘Dynamic Development’, ‘Natural Hazards’ and ‘Distinctive Landscapes’, this ensures that students can gain a full understanding of the interactions between people and environments, change in places and processes over time. This allows for opportunity to develop their knowledge, but also, apply them to real world contexts and situations. At A Level, students further develop geographical skills and knowledge through inspiring their investigative and analytical skills. Overall, the geography curriculum is broad and wide-ranging, enhancing student’s perspectives to broaden knowledge of the wider world.
How is Geography taught?
- KS3 – Students are taught in mixed ability classes for three hours each fortnight.
- KS4 – Students are taught in mixed ability classes for five hours each fortnight
- KS5 – Students are taught in mixed ability classes for nine hours each fortnight with two members of staff
Rationale and ambition for The Purbeck School Geography curriculum:
- The geography curriculum aims to encourage learners to ‘think like geographers’ through an enquiry approach to contemporary topics of study. Giving students a broad range of investigative skills, which encourages curiosity.
- The Geography Department aims to provide a curriculum which enables students to make accelerated progress, with plenty of opportunities for extended projects, which at A-Level, can lead to their own independent investigation.
- Geography at the Purbeck School provides learners with a solid grounding, whether they are going on to Further Education, Higher Education or the workplace, due a huge range of soft skills they can acquire.
- The courses aim to inspire a passion for Geography within learners which encourages an interest in the subject beyond academic achievements, for the rest of their life.
- The Geography Department aims to utilise the fantastic opportunities for field work around the local area, inspiring students to spend time in the outdoors.
The concepts that The Purbeck School Geography curriculum aims to support student progression in are:
- Knowledge of locations, places, processes, environments and different (spatial and temporal) scales (A01)
- Geography understanding of (A02):
- Concepts and how they are used in relation to places, environments and processes (case studies)
- The inter-relationships between places, environments and processes
- Apply knowledge and understanding to interpret, analyse and evaluate geographical information and issues and to make judgements (case studies and other geographical information) (A03)
- Select, adapt and use a variety of skills and techniques (mapping and graphical skills) to investigate questions and issues and communicate findings (A04)
- Use a variety of relevant quantitative, qualitative and fieldwork skills to investigate geographical questions and issues (including Decision Making Exercises and fieldwork)
- KS3 – https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/239087/SECONDARY_national_curriculum_-_Geography.pdf
- KS4 – OCR B – https://www.ocr.org.uk/Images/207307-specification-accredited-gcse-geography-b-j384.pdf
- KS5 – AQA – https://filestore.aqa.org.uk/resources/geography/specifications/AQA-7037-SP-2016.PDF
Long Term Overview
The enrichment session undertaken by the Geography team on the 29th January comprised of a climate change spin – ‘truth or lies’? Students were encouraged to challenge their thinking on whether climate change is actually happening and the evidence that currently exists to prove and disprove