Our geography curriculum, in a similar way to our history curriculum, is enquiry-based and focused on the key skills that children should learn within the subject. Our teaching is designed to provoke and provide answers to questions about diverse places, people, resources, and natural and human environments. Our curriculum enables our children to develop a deeper understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes.  We  aim to inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. Through the teaching and learning of geography, children develop a greater understanding and knowledge of their world, as well as their place in it. Children build upon previous knowledge and skills, which are transferable to other curriculum areas. 

Miss McAlister is our Geography Co-ordinator and she supports our staff team in monitoring the effectiveness of our geography curriculum and  implementing exciting ways to enrich the children’s learning in geography. As pupils progress, their growing knowledge about the world helps them to deepen their understanding of the interaction between physical and human processes, and to develop a sound understanding of the formation and use of landscapes and environments. Our geography units are enriched through strong cross-curricular links and well planned field studies. Our cross-curricular approach promotes a wider development of spiritual, moral, social and cultural learning. Extended field studies include our river study in Year 3 and our summer term geography unit in Year 6, which incorporates a fantastic residential field study week in Snowdonia. This is one of the highlights for our children during their time at Skyswood.

National Curriculum: Geography Programmes of Study


The national curriculum for geography aims to ensure that all pupils:

Develop contextual knowledge of the location of places, seas and oceans, including their defining physical and human characteristics.

Understand the processes that give rise to key physical and human geographical features of the world, how these are interdependent and how they bring about spatial variation and change over time.

Are competent in the geographical skills needed to:

– collect, analyse and communicate with a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork that deepen their understanding of geographical processes.

– interpret a range of sources of geographical information, including maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS.)

– communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps and writing at length.


By the end of each key stage, pupils are expected to know, apply and understand the matters, skills and processes specified in the relevant programme of study.


Early Years

ELG 13 – Understanding the World: People and Communities:

Children talk about past and present events in their own lives and in the lives of family members. They learn that other children don’t always enjoy the same things, and are sensitive to this. They learn about similarities and differences between themselves and others, and among families, communities and traditions.

ELG 14 – Understanding the World: The World:

Children learn about similarities and differences in relation to places, objects, materials and living things. They talk about the features of their own immediate environment and about how environments might vary from one another. They make observations of plants and animals and explain why some things occur, and talk about changes.

Key Stage 1

Pupils should develop knowledge about the world, the United Kingdom and their locality. They should understand basic subject-specific vocabulary relating to human and physical geography and begin to use geographical skills, including first hand observation, to enhance their locational awareness.

Pupils should be taught to:


– name and locate the world’s seven continents and five oceans.

– name, locate and identify characteristics of the four countries and capital cities of the United Kingdom and its surrounding seas.


– understand geographical similarities and differences through studying the human and physical geography of a small area of the United Kingdom, and of a small area in a contrasting non-European country.


– identify seasonal and daily weather patterns in the United Kingdom and the location of hot and cold areas of the world in relation to the Equator and the North and South Poles.

– use basic geographical vocabulary to refer to key physical features, including:  beach, cliff, coast, forest, hill, mountain, sea, river, ocean, soil, valley, vegetation, season and weather.

– use basic geographical vocabulary to refer to key human features, including: city, town, village, factory, farm, house, office, port, harbour and shop.


– use world maps, atlases and globes to identify the United Kingdom and its countries, as well as the countries, continents and oceans studied at this key stage.

– use simple compass directions (North, South, East and West) and locational and directional language (eg near, far, left, right) to describe the location of features and routes on a map.

– use aerial photographs and plan perspectives to recognise landmarks and basic human and physical features: devise a simple map; and use and construct basic symbols in a key.

– use simple fieldwork and observational skills to study the geography of their school and its grounds and the key human and physical features of its surrounding environment.

Key Stage 2

Pupils should extend their knowledge and understanding beyond the local area to include the United Kingdom and Europe, North and South America. This will include the location and characteristics of a range of the world’s most significant human and physical features. They should develop their use of geographical tools and skills to enhance their locational and place knowledge.

Pupils should be taught to:


– locate the world’s countries, using maps to focus on Europe (including the location of Russia) and North and South America, concentrating on their environmental regions, key physical and human characteristics, countries and major cities.

– name and locate counties and cities of the United Kingdom, geographical regions and their identifying human and physical characteristics, key topographical features (including hills, mountains, coasts and rivers), and land use patterns; and understand how some of these aspects have changed over time.

– identify the position and significance of latitude, longitude, Equator, Northern Hemisphere, Southern Hemisphere, the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, Arctic and Antarctic Circle, the Prime/Greenwich Meridian and time zones (including day and night.)


– understand geographical similarities and differences through the study of human and physical geography of a region of the United Kingdom, a region in a European country, and a region within North or South America.


– Describe and understand key aspects of physical geography, including: climate zones, biomes and vegetation belts, rivers, mountains, volcanoes and earthquakes, and the water cycle.

– Describe and understand key aspects of human geography, including: types of settlement and land use, economic activity including trade links, and the distribution of natural resources including energy, food, minerals and water.


– use maps, atlases, globes and digital/computer mapping to locate countries and describe features studied.

– use the eight points of the compass, four and six-figure grid references, symbols and key (including the use of Ordnance Survey maps) to build their knowledge of the United Kingdom and the wider world.

– use fieldwork to observe, measure and record the human and physical features in the local area using a range of methods, including sketch maps, plans and graphs, and digital technologies.