About Geography

Geography Curriculum Intent: Understanding Geography’s Curriculum DREAM 

Purpose: This document sets out how the Geography Department approaches Curriculum Intent at Eaton Bank Academy. 

Design  How have you designed your curriculum to be broad, balanced and ambitious? 
The KS3 Curriculum follows the National Curriculum, with a strong focus on the geographical skills that underpin both physical and human geography. In year 7 our students’ study both a near place (Congleton) and far place (Middle East), allowing students to develop an understanding of place and temporal change. Year 7 principally consists of skills and systems, Year 8 covers tectonic and meteorological processes, whilst Year 9 is more issues based and ambitious, allowing deeper thinking and a more challenging synoptic approach that supports the transition to KS4.  


Furthermore, a range of types of physical and human geography are studied from river landscapes to global sustainability issues such as plastic pollution. Curriculum design takes students on a journey to new places in the world to enhance their global knowledge. Content is built up in layers of skill and challenge based on a knowledge-rich curriculum, which provides a foundation for GCSE. Fieldwork is a fundamental part of the geography curriculum which provides students with an opportunity to apply their classroom-based learning to the wider world, bringing relevance and deeper skills development. 


Balance and breadth are retained at KS4, where the AQA GCSE Geography unit allows the study of both the living world and the challenges of the human environment. Furthermore, at KS5, the focus on geographical processes and global change provides a synoptic approach to learning that supports both a transition to further education, and the workplace. 

Rationale  What is the rationale behind your curriculum design and ordering of content over time? 
Our Geography Curriculum is designed to expose students to a wide range of different physical and human concepts, places, and environments, providing them with a broad and enriching grasp of geography. Our curriculum aims both to inform our students about the world that we live in, whilst allowing them to study different issues and cultures to enhance their understanding of the wider world.  


The KS3 Curriculum builds on an extensive knowledge relating to a wide range of places, environments and features at a variety of scales, extending from global to local. The development of skills and higher order thinking is reiterated by our emphasis on interleaving throughout the curriculum, both in terms of teaching and assessment.  


Furthermore, the Geography Curriculum covers several critical topics including Natural Hazards, Population Change and Sustainability (Plastic Oceans) units to further broaden students’ perspectives on China, Russia, Africa and the Middle East. These units provide students with a supportive environment to learn about, consider and discuss important and sensitive topics, which support their wider social and emotional intelligence, as well as deepening their understanding of globalisation. 

Equality  How is your curriculum accessible and purposeful for all students, including SEND, Disadvantaged and Higher Ability Learners? 
Throughout all Key Stages, the Geography Curriculum is delivered in mixed ability groups. Therefore, differentiation is at the heart of the curriculum, featuring throughout all facets of planning, delivery and assessment to support the progress of all students. The Year 7 Curriculum focuses on developing the core geographical skills of all students, which are then embedded throughout all key stages in an interleaved manner. Moreover, significant emphasis is placed on enhancing literacy skills, due to the importance of extended writing in our subject. 


Ambition and challenge are key features of the Geography Curriculum, whilst the alternate physical/human design supports the accessibility of content due to the range of knowledge explored. Furthermore, there is a consistent focus on high quality teaching and learning as an integral form of differentiation which enhances the learning experience of all students, particularly utilising the vehicle of modelling throughout the Curriculum. 


Significant emphasis is placed on discussion, with our curriculum designed to allow students to engage with important and sensitive topics in a safe environment. These verbal discussions provide further accessibility and purpose for all students, whilst providing ample opportunity to deepen thinking and develop higher level challenge. High quality revision and consolidation resources further support all students, with KS3 having access to Sharepoint lessons and TEAMS quizzes. At KS4, knowledge organisers are issued for each unit of work and there is consistent use of GCSEPod. 

Aims, Vision & Values  What is the aim of your curriculum and how does this support the aims and values of the school? 
Our Curriculum aims to inspire a curiosity and fascination of the natural world within our students, and to embed a lifelong passion for geography. In turn, this aims to encourage a high uptake in the subject at KS4 and KS5, as well as beyond school both in terms of formal University education and as more informal long-term interest in geography. Moreover, our curriculum aims to develop well-rounded students who have a broad understanding of the world they live in, have deepened their understanding of the interaction between physical and human processes and of the formation and use of landscapes and environments. The aim is to foster a passion that will enable them to maximise their potential. 


The Geography Curriculum embeds the knowledge, understanding and skills to provide a framework and approach that will explain how the earth’s features at different scales are shaped, interconnected and change over time. 

Our curriculum strongly serves to reiterate the core school values of respect, kindness, ambition, optimism and honesty. 


As well as developing students’ academic knowledge, we aim to develop students’ understanding of the wider world, helping them to grasp how the world has evolved over time and how the country that we live in has been shaped by physical and human processes and overall interaction. Alongside this, the curriculum develops a cultural understanding of other societies, aiming to enhance students’ cultural capital and wider worldliness. 

Misconceptions  How do you address misconceptions in your subject to support students’ learning? 
Misconceptions are clearly preidentified in planning, allowing these to be clearly addressed within the delivery of the lesson. For example, one common misconception is student’s interpretation of the African continent (in year 9), as regards to climate, development, ethnicity and biomes. By being aware of common misconceptions such as this, we take a proactive approach to dealing with these misconceptions such as delivering lessons on diversity. 


These misconceptions extend not only to places and people but also the application of knowledge and skills in assessments. For example, the confusion between density and distribution often limits students understanding of population growth and change. We support staff to become experts in the specifications delivered, whilst our collaborative approach to planning supports this by sharing common misconceptions. Modelling is frequently used as a method to tackle misconceptions, showing high level responses and examples which contain misconceptions for students to identify. 


All our lessons are built around patterns, processes, systems and themes. which structure the learning and are reviewed throughout using a variety of methods. This supported by interleaving, consistent use of formative assessment both in lessons and through Forms Quizzes and high quality pre-planned revision resources, support students in tackling misconceptions.  


Geography Curriculum Map

Meet the Teachers

Mrs Wright