Geography Subject Lead - Mrs Skeldon
Why I am passionate about Geography...
Hi, I am Mrs Skeldon and I am the Geography lead at St James'. Throughout life I have always had a passion for visiting new places and experiencing new cultures. After leaving school I spent a year living and working in Canada which allowed me to gain greater insight into the physical environment, culture and traditions of another country. Prior to teaching I worked as a world-wide travel consultant, planning detailed, personalised trips which gave me a great knowledge of our world. I have also been lucky enough to visit 5 of the 7 continents, and hope to visit the final 2 soon!
I am thrilled to be able to share my passion for geography as subject leader at St James’ and to inspire and develop enthusiasm for the subject.
Together with pupils, staff have developed a knowledge rich curriculum, where acquisition and assimilation of knowledge is at the heart of learning, and where skills may be an outcome of the curriculum, not its driving purpose. We aim to enable children to develop creatively and cognitively, to recognise prior learning and to provide quality first hand experiences and opportunities.
At St James' Catholic Primary School, we aim to develop children's sense of place. We teach geography to enable children to gain knowledge and understanding of the Earth's key human and physical processes, and to increase their knowledge of other cultures. In doing so, they learn respect and gain an understanding of what it means to be a positive citizen in a multi-cultural country. We also support the development of a variety of other cross-curricular skills, including those of enquiry, problem solving, computing, investigation and how to present conclusions in the most appropriate way. Geography will be inclusive and designed to meet the needs of all children.
We use the National Curriculum as the basis for our bespoke Geography curriculum. Children will be increasingly challenged as they progress through school, building upon prior knowledge.
Each class will have a working wall displaying key vocabulary and relevant information for that particular topic which will be used and referred to during lessons.
Knowledge organisers will be used and added to at the beginning and end of each lesson helping children to retrieve knowledge and embed learning.
Map study – each year group has a planned mapping lesson which is taught at the beginning of the first topic studied. The knowledge and skills developed are then used and referred to throughout every geography lesson. Mapping lessons have been carefully planned to ensure progression as the pupils move through the year groups.
In this school fieldwork and first-hand experience will be fundamental to the teaching and learning of geography and where appropriate, all pupils will be given the opportunity to go out into the local and wider environment to research and discover the world in which they live.
Geography in this school will be underpinned by the study of real places and discovering how the people living there are influenced by and affect the environment of those places.
We will develop pupils’ knowledge and geographical understanding by first immersing them in the area where they live and then by gradually widening their horizons and increasing their awareness of their town, their region, their nation, other lands and continents.
Teaching and learning will use quality first-hand experiences, imaginative resources and ICT to build pupils’ knowledge about different places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes.
Topics in geography will be linked to other core and foundation subjects, particularly history, RE, art and science and meaningful connections will be made as pupils increase their knowledge, skills and understanding of the world.
Assessment at St James’ is on-going to ensure that understanding is being achieved and that progress is being made. Teachers monitor progress and adjust their teaching accordingly through their weekly planning and ensure both verbal and written feedback is given to the children as soon as possible. Class teachers will complete assessment grids showing the children's attainment within Geography and use this to monitor specific groups including SEND.
The Geography subject leader will also assess the impact of teaching through incidental monitoring including book looks, learning walks and pupil interviews.
Geography at St James' will inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. It will increase their knowledge and understanding of the world and it will be used to promote excellence and enjoyment. It will be linked with other subjects and it will have a strong presence in the ethos of the school through art, displays, performances, music, drama and assemblies. We will make the world our classroom to enrich the lives of our pupils.
What the children think about Geography...