The Geography Department aims to provide an exciting and stimulating mix of Human and Physical Geography at all stages of the curriculum. As part of this we aim to foster a nurturing, engaging and progressive learning environment, where each student is challenged and supported so that they achieve their maximum potential.
We believe that learning in Geography should give students a true appreciation of the world around them. This allows them to understand the workings of the natural world and also how people interact with natural environments and with each other. The concept of sustainability is also key to the teaching of Geography at Harris, as we believe that we are producing the global citizens of tomorrow and passing on the responsibility for caring for our planet and its natural resources.
Finally, we aim to develop key learning and life skills in our students such as independent enquiry, teamwork and critical thinking. These skills are essential for their current student career and their success and well being in the future.
We teach an exciting range of subjects in Key stage three that cover a broad range of human and physical geographical content including map skills, river systems, environmental disasters, tectonic landscapes, wild weather, development, globalization and many others.
The curriculum is designed to engage and excite students, to develop skills of teamwork, problem solving and to foster independence. This also means that there are a range of assessment methods, ranging from formal written tasks, to ‘Apprentice’ style presentations, to project work.
We aim to facilitate well rounded students and are also hoping to prepare students for their future at Harris and beyond. We like to think that we are promoting the joy of Geography and producing the geographers of tomorrow.
Current Year 11 GCSE Geography students at Harris follow the ‘Edexcel A’ specification, which examines a comprehensive range of geographical skills and content, which we feel gives our students the best possible experience from a GCSE course. The course comprises of four units:
- Unit 1: Skills and Challenges to the planet – 25%
- Unit 2: Physical World – 25%
- Unit 3: Human World -25%
- Unit 4: Controlled assessment (coursework) – 25%
- Units one, two and three are examined in three separate, formal examinations at the end of Year eleven and the Controlled assessment is completed at the start of Year eleven.
The exciting range of content includes topics such as Population change, Wasteful world, Tectonic landscapes, Coastal landscapes, Economic development, River landscapes, Environmental challenges, Settlement change and Global tourism. Through the delivery of this rich and varied curriculum, we aim to instil knowledge, skills and understanding that will help students to become better learners, as well as shaping future geographers at college, university level and beyond.
Our Year nine and Year ten GCSE cohorts follow the AQA GCSE specification.
This course offers a contemporary and engaging blend of human and physical content, whilst developing geographical skills and critical analysis throughout.
The physical content includes tectonic and atmospheric disasters, the living world, climate change, rivers and coasts and extreme weather. The human content covers urban challenges, energy and resource management, the changing economic world and the global development gap.
The content is examined through three formal written examinations, which all take place at the end of Year eleven. There are two fieldwork visits that take place as part of the course, however, unlike previous years; these are now examined through formal examination and not through controlled assessment.
SMSC IN GEOGRAPHY
SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT IN GEOGRAPHY
Social and moral issues are at the heart of our curriculum in Geography. Students are often asked to engage in activities that involve Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning (SEAL) across the entire range of the content. This can be something like showing empathy for earthquake victims, to understanding the issues surrounding global inequality, to the concepts of sustainability and treating our planet, resources and fellow people with respect.
MORAL DEVELOPMENT IN GEOGRAPHY
We also aim to foster a strong moral compass by examining issues from the local, to the global scale and asking big questions about the way forward in situations that are socially and morally challenging. A key part of our work on global development also focusses on the role of charity and aid in the world. We encourage our students to challenge inequality and suffering and to be generous towards charity, both in their thoughts and their activities in daily life.
SPIRITUAL DEVELOPMENT IN GEOGRAPHY
Spiritual Development in Geography comes through an appreciation of Christian values and beliefs in relation to the global issues and moral situations that are studied. In this way we uphold the values of the school as a Christian community, whilst grounding this within a geographical context.
CULTURAL DEVELOPMENT IN GEOGRAPHY
Geography is a subject that celebrates diversity and the many cultural differences that are part of the rich tapestry that make up our global community. This experience of global difference is taught through an appreciation and a respect for people of all genders, beliefs, races, cultures and creeds around the world and within our multicultural society at home.