From the moment we are born, it is our instinct to begin to explore our world around us with all our senses. At Our Lady’s Catholic Primary School, we feel it is important to nurture and encourage that natural curiosity, to shape and direct it to turn the children into inquisitive, questioning learners who look closely at the world around them and begin to be able to interpret what they see. We want to develop their knowledge of the UK and countries around the world and learn about the similarities and differences between British culture and others. We hope to inspire our pupils to become global citizens by exploring their own place in the world, their values and their responsibilities to other people, to the environment and to the sustainability of the planet.
The Intent of our Geography Curriculum
Our Geography curriculum is designed to develop children’s curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. Children investigate a range of places – both in Britain and abroad – to help develop their knowledge and understanding of the Earth’s physical and human processes. We are committed to providing children with opportunities to investigate and make enquiries about their local area of Seacroft and Leeds so that they can develop a real sense of who they are, their heritage and what makes our local area unique and special. We also aim to develop the children’s ability to apply geographical skills to enable to confidently communicate their findings and geographical understanding to a range of audiences.
Through high quality teaching, we develop the following essential characteristics of geographers:
➢ An excellent knowledge of where places are and what they are like, both in Britain and the wider world;
➢ A comprehensive understanding of the ways in which places are interdependent and interconnected;
➢ An extensive base of geographical knowledge and vocabulary;
➢ Fluency in complex, geographical enquiry and the ability to apply questioning skills, as well as effective presentation techniques;
➢ The ability to reach clear conclusions and explain their findings;
➢ Excellent fieldwork skills as well as other geographical aptitudes and techniques;
➢ The ability to express well-balanced opinions, rooted in very good knowledge and understanding about current issues in society and the environment;
➢ A genuine interest in the subject and a real sense of curiosity about the world and the people who live here.
Each October, we will hold a Geography week. The aim of this week is to excite and enthuse children about Geography as well as building on their basic skills in map work and place knowledge. Activities might include:
- A forest school session for each class at Green Moon, Swillington
- A capital city quiz for each KS2 class
- A practical, map work session ‘Explorer Day’ led by Active Outdoor Discovery for each class
- An introduction into Class Pals on Oddizzi
- A look into a specific global or local geographical issue eg sustainability, climate change, Fairtrade, loss of green spaces, a new local housing development etc.
Our Lady’s Passport to the World
We believe that children should be exposed to a wide range of contrasting places around the world. Each year, in the summer term, we will have a ‘Passport to the World’ week where children will ‘visit’ a country to discover and find out about it. Children will collect stamps for their passport so by the time they leave primary school, they will have ‘visited’ 8 different countries, spanning the globe. We have chosen countries to enable children to get a breadth of knowledge about contrasting locations around the world. We have also looked at the diversity in our school community and have chosen countries that reflect some of children’s cultural and ethnic backgrounds.
Nursery – Republic of Ireland
Reception – France
Y1 – Poland
Y2 – India
Y3 – Philippines
Y4 – Australia
Y5 – Ghana
Y6 – Chosen by the class
At the end of the week, we will hold a special assembly where each class can share their knowledge and understanding of each country.
Key facts should include:
- Locating the country on a map and knowing its continent
- Knowing the country’s capital city
- Knowing some of the country’s physical features
- Knowing some of the country’s human features eg landmarks
It could also include:
- Discovering the language, food and cultural events
- Discovering facts about the country’s history
- Discovering facts about the country’s animals and plant life