Learning within geography fires pupils’ curiosity and aims to provoke and answer questions about the natural and human worlds, using different scales of enquiry to view them from different perspectives. Children are taught to develop knowledge of places and environments throughout the world, and understand maps and atlases. The children learn through an investigative approach, asking questions, gathering and recording geographical information and using various resources. Their study work is also enhanced by educational visits to places of interest.

In Geography, teachers make it explicit to children that they are learning geography skills and that they are being ‘Geographers’.  Geography is important in our school as it provides a means of exploring, appreciating and understanding the world in which we live and how it has evolved.  We explore the relationship between Earth and its people.  It stimulates curiosity and imagination. Wherever possible, we aim to build upon the child’s ‘Individual Geography’ by developing geographical skills, understanding and knowledge through studying places and themes.  Staff continually review and adapt work and learning to meet our children’s needs.

Children are given opportunities to develop an awareness of their immediate surroundings, other places and how people have used their environment. Through this they are introduced to the techniques necessary to undertake fieldwork and geographical enquiries. Children are encouraged to broaden their knowledge of places and environments throughout the world; develop an understanding of maps, and a range of investigative and problem-solving skills both inside and outside the classroom.  As pupils study geography they encounter different societies and cultures, which helps them realise how nations rely on each other. It can inspire them to think about their own place in the world, their values and their rights and responsibilities to other people and the environment.


At Maidwell we achieve this by:

  • Teaching Geography regularly. Children cover two geography topics each year, each year group has an essential skills and knowledge project in the autumn term;
  • Carefully structuring geographical concepts;
  • Structuring key knowledge throughout the curriculum threading key geographical concepts and preparing children to study more thematic geography knowledge;
  • Teaching specific geographical skills;
  • Encouraging children to think like geographers;
  • Identifying key vocabulary and knowledge;
  • Ensuring regular and effective retrieval practice;
  • Enriching the curriculum through experiences, visits and trips;
  • Re-teaching skills throughout the children’s time in school. Skills are revisited and honed in a spiral curriculum, which progresses in terms of depth and challenge, to build on the children’s previous learning;
  • Fostering an enjoyment and appreciation of geography;
  • Offering children opportunities to encounter different societies and cultures;
  • Celebrating effort, progress and achievement in geography through displays, exhibitions and enrichment activities, such as trips out and competitions.


By the end of each year, children should have gained the substantive knowledge (knowledge of established geographical facts) and disciplinary knowledge (knowledge of the methods used in geography to establish facts) in the skills and core knowledge statements for that year group.

Children will have been exposed to a rich hinterland of contextual and broader knowledge, information, examples, illustrations and experiences to support their learning.

In Key Stage 1, the children study urban and coastal environments and the physical and human features of the United Kingdom.

In Lower Key Stage 2, the children focus on physical features and phenomena, including earthquakes, volcanoes, rivers and mountains.

In Upper Key Stage 2, the children study agriculture and land use, with a focus in Year 6 on the polar regions.

Please refer to our Long-Term Programme for details on when each unit of work is scheduled.