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Geography at Wilshere-Dacre



We aim for a high-quality geography curriculum which inspires children’s curiosity and develops an appreciation and understanding of the world we live in. Our aim to equip children with geographical skills to develop their knowledge through studying places, people and natural and human environments. We aim to provoke thoughts, questions and to encourage children to discover answers to their questions through exploration and research to enable them to gain a greater understanding and knowledge of the world and their place in it. We aim to develop the children’s ability to apply geographical skills to enable them to confidently communicate their findings and geographical understanding to a range of audiences.


The aims of teaching geography in our school are:

• To inspire pupils’ curiosity to discover more about the world and its people.

• To enable children to know about the location of the world’s continents, countries, cities, seas and oceans.

• To develop the skills of interpreting a range of sources of geographical information, including maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS).

• To help children understand how the human and physical features of a place shapes its location and can change over time.

• To enable children to observe, measure, record and present human and physical features through the use of fieldwork.




Geography units follow three stages: Engage, Develop and Reflect. At the beginning of a unit, teachers plan exciting wow days to engage and enthuse the children. This is followed by the Develop stage, where lessons are taught which cover the key unit objectives. The final stage is the Reflect stage, which is used to address misconceptions and reteach geographical skills, which are not yet consolidated. 


Our Geography curriculum is based around the substantive concepts of climate and settlement and land use. These substantive concepts are the core knowledge that builds children’s learning from one topic to the next. Through continuously building upon each concept and revisiting the concepts time and time again in different contexts, children develop and strengthen their understanding every year. Additionally, the explicit teaching of these supports children to transfer their knowledge across the Geography curriculum and use it to frame future learning.  


When planning geography, prior knowledge and skills covered are taken into account so that children are able to make connections with prior learning and to ensure there is clear progression across the school. All geography lessons start with a recall starter, which recap previous learning from a range of foundation subjects and geography vocabulary from previous units.


Teachers cater for the varying needs of all learners, scaffolding when necessary and as appropriate, and ensuring an appropriate level of challenge. Assessment is ongoing throughout the geography curriculum. Each unit, children undertake two assessment tasks, which informs planning and allows teachers to assess against the coverage of key skills and knowledge.


Tier 3 vocabulary has been mapped out across all year groups to ensure consistency and progression. 10 tier 3 words have been selected for each unit and are taught across a half term. Vocabulary is taught in context and children are encouraged to use the key vocabulary both orally and in written work. Vocabulary is displayed in the classroom and children record definitions in their books. Teachers encourage discussion techniques such as ABC (Agree, Build on and Challenge) in lessons to promote debate and provide opportunities for use of key vocabulary.


In a world where environmental concerns and sustainable practices have taken centre stage, it is crucial to engage our future generation in shaping a sustainable future. At Wilshere-Dacre, we have embedded sustainability objectives into our Geography curriculum. As a result, our children are gaining confidence in their understanding of climate change, the carbon cycle and how they can make a positive impact to the changes in our world.


To further develop their understanding of the world around them, children have opportunities to experience geography outside of the classroom. The children undertake fieldwork during every unit, which allows them to explore and understand the geography of the local area.




In geography, children are confident and able to talk about what they have learnt using subject specific vocabulary. Children enjoy geography and are curious about the world around them. Children’s work demonstrates that geography is taught at an age-appropriate standard across each year group with opportunities planned in for pupils working at greater depth. Work is of good quality and demonstrates that children are developing the geographical knowledge and skills to help them explore, navigate and understand the world around them and their place in it. Children’s knowledge and skills will develop progressively as they move through the school to prepare them to become competent geographers in secondary education and for life as an adult in the wider world.

"I find it interesting to know how different countries live"- Year 5 pupil


"Geography makes me think about how I can help and make changes"- Year 3 pupil