Being a Geographer
Being a Geographer Champion: an approach to Geography
What is the point of Being a Geographer?
A high-quality geography education should inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. Teaching should equip pupils with knowledge about diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes. As pupils progress, their growing knowledge about the world should help them to deepen their understanding of the interaction between physical and human processes, and of the formation and use of landscapes and environments. Geographical knowledge, understanding and skills provide the frameworks and approaches that explain how the Earth’s features at different scales are shaped, interconnected and change over time.
The aims of being a Geographer are:
- contextual knowledge of the location of globally significant places – both terrestrial and marine – including their defining physical and human characteristics and how these provide a geographical context for understanding the actions of processes
- 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, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length.
Where does it come from?
Being a Geographer is integrated into our curriculum through Curious-city. An enquiry-led, local learning approach to the National Curriculum 2014. This approach recognises that the cognitive maturity of learners affects what and how they learn. It also encourages teachers to think of how they encourage learners to Being a Geographer instead of simply teaching them Geography.
Within a Curious-city curriculum, there is no ‘skills or knowledge’ debate. It is seamless blend of both, and through every enquiry, learners are challenged to work independently to prove their understanding of Being a Geographer.
What does Being a Geographer entail?
- Provide encouragement and ideas to staff across the school
- Monitor content and enquiries and be mindful of coverage ‘v’ skill acquisition
- Collect and evaluate different voices with regard to Being a Geographer
- Ensure enquiry planning and floor books are sufficient to effectively represent Being a Geographer.
What is ‘covered’?
Essentially, a Curious-city curriculum uses the National Curriculum 2014 areas as a basic foundation of entitlement. However Curious-city is much more than that. It is localised, real-life and challenges learners to apply their learning in unique ways without the support of adults to prove what they have learnt. Local companies, charities, organisations, individuals and objects are used as foci to enhance and instill a sense of curiosity, pride and stewardship.
How is Being a Geographer monitored and assessed?
Every term, through a family ‘sharing of learning’ event, Being Champions review floor books and displays of learning shared with families. This helps to not only ensure coverage and ‘matching up’ progress throughout a year group in line with the whole school curriculum map, but also gauge learner and family reactions to learning and provides an opportunity to collect different voices.
Every two terms, Being Champions meet as a team to discuss and share what they are seeing and hearing, and as working as a team, help to review the school’s curriculum and contribute to the development plan. One of the Being Champions is then designated to report to the Senior Leader Team.
As there is no requirement to formally report attainment of Geography, Being a Geographer is assessed through monitoring how a learner responds to enquiries and whether they show a particular enthusiasm and disposition towards it, or, if they constantly needed support in order to access it. This information is recorded onto the medium term plans which are kept and used for report writing towards the end of the year.