Miss. R. Coote – Head of Department, Teacher of Geography
Mr. D. Marsh – Teacher of Geography
Mr. A. Hynes – Teacher of Geography
The intent of the Geography department is to develop student’s awareness of the world around them and inspire pupils to make a difference. We want our students to appreciate their natural environment and to take some responsibility for our geographical futures. As a department we seek to equip our pupils with the necessary skills and tools to prepare them for life and to achieve well at KS4.
We aim to develop students’ skills learned at KS3 and widen their knowledge of geography at varying scale. By the end of KS3 we want pupils to be confident young people that have a detailed understanding of the world, how it has been formed, and current issues and developments. At KS3 students study a wide range of topics, such as; extreme weather, coastal erosion and world ecosystems. The KS3 curriculum is developed to allow progression and create detailed knowledge, a understanding and skills that prepares students adequately for GCSE.
At Key Stage 4 we follow the AQA exam board specification. At Key Stage 3 approximately 80% of content is directly linked to KS3. Approximately 20% is taught as we feel it is necessary for pupils to know about what is happening on our planet e.g. endangered species. We have also incorporated some fieldwork at KS3 to prepare them for field work in Year 10. We have decided our current schemes of work as a department.
Learning and Teaching
The department aims to encourage students to use their geographical skills and knowledge to enhance their appreciation of the natural world that we live in. The wide variety of schemes of work and units studied ensures that students cover all aspects of physical, human and environmental Geography.
Year 7 have 3 lessons per fortnight, Year 8 and 9 have 4 lessons per fortnight and Key Stage 4 have 6 lessons per fortnight.
The department has a wide variety of resources to ensure that lessons are interesting and motivational. The department takes great care to cater for all different learning styles and also students who may have special needs or are gifted and talented at Geography. All teaching rooms are well equipped with interactive whiteboards. There is a wide range of maps, textbooks, educational programmes and many self-made resources. There is also access to computers and laptops to enrich students’ learning.
The department offers a range of enrichment opportunities for students. Field work is an important part of the curriculum. Fieldwork trips include a Year Eight trip to Chester Zoo to study endangered species and Year Ten trip to Formby/Southport to collect primary data. Year 8 complete a micro-climate study on the school grounds. The aim is for students to see real examples of what they have been studying. In February 2019, Mr Hynes led a trip to Iceland for 30 Year 10 and 11 pupils to study the different landforms. The pupils had an amazing time and the plan is to run the trip every two years.
Aims of Assessement:
1) All students have target levels or grades to work towards.
2) Students receive oral and written feedback on their work and individual advice on how to progress and achieve target levels and grades.
3) Students will take more responsibility for their own learning and progression through target setting.
4) Students experience a wide range of assessment techniques including teacher, self and peer.
At Key Stage Three, students are formally assessed at the end of each unit. This means that they will have five formal assessments in each year.
In addition to key assessments, the teachers mark students’ work in their books using the traffic light system which is linked to the students’ target levels or grades.
Students also receive written feedback on the key pieces and more general comments e.g. spelling and grammar. They are often set an extension question to consider.
At Key Stage Four, students are regularly assessed using past examination papers. This means that they are well prepared for the styles of questions that will be in their examination, and also be practised in the timings of the examinations. Each lesson incorporates an element of exam preparation in the form of exam style questions.