Emmaville Primary School


Geography Curriculum Overview

We want the Geography element of our school curriculum to inspire pupils with 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. We want our children to gain confidence and have practical experiences of geographical knowledge, understanding, and skills that explain how the Earth’s features at different scales are shaped, interconnected, and change over time.

Curriculum Drivers

The School’s Curriculum Drivers are reflected in our Geography education:


Learning from the past


Geography helps us understand how places and our climate have changed over time, how human and physical processes have interacted to cause current conditions, and how those interactions will continue to change landscapes, environments, and livelihoods in the future.


Living in the Present


Geography is a living, dynamic, ever-changing subject that requires the study of the ‘real life’ and the here and now. Children need to study real places, real experiences, and real issues to make Geography come alive. We need to encourage our children to think about questions such as:

  • Where is this place?
  • What is it like? (And why?)
  • How and why is it changing?
  • How does this place compare with other places?
  • How and why are places connected?


Preparing for the Future


As Michael Palin said, "geography is the subject which holds the key to our future".

Rex Walford argued that it was important for teachers to be concerned not only with how places and the environment are in the present and were in the past but also to be concerned about what might be changed in the future and with what impact.

Education is about preparing young people for adult life, and an important justification for teaching a 'future-oriented geography curriculum’ is to prepare them to live in a changing world.

‘If the future is unavoidable, let us at least not walk backwards into it.’ (Rex Walford, 1984)

We will give our children the opportunities to do this through activities that involve:

  • Geographical enquiries: extending the usual questions about a place (What is it like? Why is it like this? How did it come to be like this?) by adding the question ‘How ought it to be?’
  • Consequences: children are given an initial stimulus (e.g. a new supermarket is being opened) and asked ‘What are the future implications of this?’
  • Future priorities: this can involve different views of the future, e.g. the childrens’ perceptions for the future of their locality.
The Geographical Association: A Different View
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