Alma Park’s Geography curriculum begins in EYFS. Through 'Understanding the World', children are given the opportunity to explore different people, cultures and communities. The National Curriculum provides the skill and knowledge progression foundations that are then built on to provide a purposeful progression of knowledge, skills and vocabulary. This ensures that the National Curriculum end points are met.
Our pupils are given a breadth of experience to develop their understanding of themselves as individuals within their community and also as members of a wider global community, inspiring their curiosity about their locality and the wider world. Pupils build on their knowledge and skills in different areas of Geography, such as human and physical geography, place knowledge and locational knowledge. This ensures they have the ability to understand the world and their place within it.
Alma Park has a bespoke and tailored Geography curriculum which is designed to meet the needs of the children in our community. By teaching Geography in discrete lessons and with purposeful links to other curriculum areas, pupils develop mapping, observational and critical thinking skills. As a UNICEF Rights Respecting School, Geography is delivered in a safe and inspiring environment which nurtures children’s talents, allowing them to thrive so that when they leave Alma Park they are responsible, active citizens. Geography at Alma Park promotes and encourages sustainability in various ways including: understanding that the Earth’s resources are finite and how to protect them, understanding the impact of human activities on the Earth and emboldening the children to become responsible global citizens. Diversity is embraced by giving opportunities to study a range of different places and cultures which are relevant to the children’s lives. Lessons and resources are adapted when necessary to ensure SEND and disadvantaged pupils can access all aspects of the same curriculum.
At Alma Park we provide many enriching opportunities for fieldwork, such as local visits and wider ranging trips to places across the UK. We also celebrate international awareness days, such as Earth Day, to bring the school together on significant global issues.
Learning is the core purpose of our school and is central to everything that happens.
In Nursery and Reception, we follow the Statuary Framework for Early Years Foundation Stage document. This foundation in Geography is based on ‘Understanding the World’ in which they live, through exploring natural materials and caring for their environment. Children in EYFS also have the opportunity to use maps to look at and compare similarities and differences between our environment/country and others.
In KS1 and KS2 the Geography curriculum covers all the requirements of the 2014 National Curriculum. At Alma Park the National Curriculum has been refined to reflect the communities the children belong to. It is relevant, diverse and engaging. For example, children will study what it is like to live in Levenshulme and will compare this to other cities and countries around the world. SEND and social disadvantaged pupils can access the Geography curriculum by adapted resources and support.
Geography is delivered in discreet lessons. Long term plans, knowledge progression and skills progression documents are the building blocks of the subject. From these, medium term plans are created. Individual lesson plans are created by class teachers, these lesson plans take their objectives from the medium term plans. Lessons are structured to minimise cognitive overload, this is done by ensuring prior knowledge is secure and that lessons are not overloaded with new knowledge. Lessons are completed in purple ‘Topic’ books that are shared with the History topics.
The outdoor environment and the local community are considered an opportunity for active learning for all our pupils. These can be used to gain an understanding of where we live, in order to compare (both similarities and differences) their school and community to other locations around the UK and the world.
As well as our school based learning, we ensure learning is supported by relevant educational visits and visitors such as visiting a rural location to compare this to Levenshulme.
Our commitment to being a UNICEF Rights Respecting School is shown through our Geography curriculum. For example, Article 24, ‘Children have the right to a clean and safe environment.’