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Geography at Heyes Lane Primary School

Our Vision

  • Implementation

    A love of planet Earth is key to the implementation of our Geography curriculum and one which has not been difficult to foster. Usually children look to adults for leadership, however with the emergence of a climate conscience culture amongst young people, the roles have been reversed and it is now children who are leading the way in the battle against climate change.

    At Heyes Lane, we have used children’s passion for the world to develop a series of themes which make use of and ignite their love of geography. The themes are pupil and enquiry lead. This starts early; In Year 1 for example, children become passionate about saving the Coral Reef in Australia, despite the 16,000 mile difference, their spirit is unwavering.

    Year 2 bring it closer to home by exploring the Geographical reasons behind Manchester’s success and contribution in the industrial revolution. In addition, children make a historical link to Geography by learning the reasons behind the Ancient Romans’ decisions to settle in Chester.

    The world is clearly on the verge of a huge turning point in the war against climate change and in Year 4 children explore this in depth with their topic ‘Can little people save the world?’ During this topic, children learn about deforestation both abroad and locally. They use research skills to determine what can be done in their school environment. Following a pupil-led enquiry, children have grown their own bee-friendly flower bed on the school field.

    In a true display of thinking outside the box, the Year 5 team’s space topic is a hotbed of Geographical skills, knowledge and communication. The end goal being to convince people to choose their planet to move society to, following Earth’s demise. In this topic, children discuss whether or not to colonise Mars, the impact of climate change on planet Earth and different leadership styles from government roles, to that of individuals like Greta Thunberg and activists such as The Extinction Rebellion.

  • Topics

    Year 1
    The Coral Reef – Mapwork: continents
    Paddington from Peru – Place Knowledge: comparing Timperley to another part of the world

    Year 2
    Explorers – Mapwork: continents
    Africa – Place Knowledge: comparing Timperley to another part of the world – Physical Knowledge: the equator and weather conditions

    Year 3
    Mountains – Mapwork: Countries and continents
    Physical Knowledge: climate zones, mountains, volcanoes

    Three for Trees – hysical knowledge: vegetation
    Human Geography: economic activity, distribution of resources

    Year 4
    Turbulent Earth – Mapwork: continents
    The Rainforest – Location Knowledge: continents, countries, environmental regions, equator and tropics.
    Place Knowledge: Comparison of temperate woodlands to tropical rainforest.

    Year 5
    Rivers – Location Knowledge: Continents, countries, environmental regions, rivers, equator and tropics.

    Year 6
    The Ark – Location Knowledge: continents, countries, environmental regions, equator and tropics.
    Place Knowledge: Comparison of flora and fauna between local and non-local region.

  • Impact

    The Geography curriculum at Heyes Lane is based around developing children’s passion, through highly engaging and constantly evolving topics. Children will gain, develop and consolidate all of the skills and knowledge they require as per the national curriculum, whilst also developing their own love of learning and the school’s five core values.

    By the time pupils at Heyes Lane leave for secondary education, they have the following knowledge and skills.

    • Location Knowledge

    Children are able to use maps to identify key countries, regions, towns, cities and geographical features.

    • Place Knowledge

    Children are able to articulate and discuss the differences between varying areas of the world and how society is impacted by geography.

    • Geographical Skills and Fieldwork

    Children can use maps, atlases and other similar sources to locate places and describe its features. They know the 8 points of a compass, grid references and keys. Finally, they can use fieldwork to assess the effect of humans in a given area and also to sketch, make their own maps and to use a range of digital technologies.

Progression & Outcome

At Heyes Lane, we measure children’s success in Geography across the skills and knowledge they acquire as per the National Curriculum but also with our Active and Ethical Citizen curriculum in mind. From KS1 through to the end of KS2, planning is carefully thought through with an eye on where children have come from and where they are headed.  

KS1: Children develop the basics of their place on Earth from both a community/local sense to a more global perspective. Children will understand what the United Kingdom looks like on a map, how to locate it and the names of the four separate countries that make up the United Kingdom.  

Children also begin to look at the world in a wider sense; undertaking focused learning on areas outside of Europe and beginning to learn about physical Geography such as coral reef and biomes.  

Children begin the infancy of their Geographical skillsets in KS1, they will learn about the four points of a compass and how to use maps to identify the United Kingdom. 

KS2:In KS2, children refine and finesse their knowledge and skills. They both take a broader look at the world by expanding their knowledge of biomes, habitats and regions; but also take a smaller and more focused dive into certain areas, for example; Year 4 researching the Rainforest or Year 6, looking into geographical reasons behind Manchester’s success in the industrial revolution.  

Ethical and Active Citizens: All the while, the children will be looking at the local and global implications of climate change and Earth’s dwindling resources as part of the Ethical and Active Citizen curriculum. There will be a constant focus on how we can change, what we can do to change and why we need to change certain things to help to make the world a better and more equitable place for all.  

Links and Resources:

Fun Geography Games

Digital Dialects

Geography reading for Independent learners