Geography

Geography is a popular and well regarded subject within the school. The department currently consists of six Geography teachers, with several also teaching other subjects. Lessons are mainly taught in specialised rooms, which are next to each other in a well-equipped block that was built in 2004. Each room is modern and well-resourced with its own whiteboard, interactive smartboard and computer linked to the school network. A dedicated computer room with 30 terminals is nearby.

Lessons are varied with a mix of problem solving exercises, research based activities, worksheets, use of the interactive smartboard, DVDs and group work. ICT is used to enhance students learning where possible, for example for researching and presenting information. Fieldwork is important and Year 7 students use the local area, Year 8 visit the coast at Flamborough and Year 10 GCSE students go on a residential fieldtrip in April to Bewerley Park to help them complete their controlled assessment. Year 12 fieldwork is carried out at the Cranedale Centre over three days in October. In addition, there is a fieldtrip to Iceland for Year 12/13 students to explore issues about plate tectonics, geothermal activity and tourism.

The department has friendly, enthusiastic and committed teachers who are continuing to improve the already high standards that have been achieved in the past.

  • Mr P Hickling PHk
  • Miss R Brady RBr
  • Mrs L Butcher LB
  • Miss L Goodall LG
  • Mr T Morris TM
  • Miss H Symons HS

The Key Stage 3 curriculum contains a range of engaging topics that develop the students’ geographical understanding and their Key Learning Attributes. In Year 7 the students investigate issues relating to their local to global links. This includes topics such as Our place in the world, Geography and survival, Settlement issues and Debating development. In Year 8 the students investigate issues relating to Violent volcanoes, Energetic earthquakes, Slumming it, Investigating India and Crumbling coasts. In Year 9 the students investigate issues relating to Respecting rainforests, Awesome Antarctica, Desolate deserts and Climate chaos. Where possible, local fieldwork is carried out in Year 7 to investigate land use and the issues regarding the Germany Beck Housing development. In Year 8 students carry out fieldwork at Flamborough Head to examine the formation of coastal features.

At Key Stage 3 there are eight classes split into two halves of the year. Each half has one lower ability set, with the rest of the students mixed into the other three sets. In Years 8 and 9, each half of the year has one set one, two set twos and one set three.

Geography is a popular option choice at GCSE with a large proportion of students taking the subject. Students are taught in four to six groups that are usually set by ability. Students follow the AQA Syllabus B which is an issue based course examining units such as coastal processes, urban environment, natural hazards and global tourism. Students also complete two controlled assessments. Students enjoy the course and many build upon their success, both in terms of their overall attainment and in comparison with their FFT-D estimated grades, by studying Geography at A level

Unit 1 – Coasts and Urban Environment

  • Coastal processes and landforms
  • Coastal management and sustsinabilty
  • Urban issues in MEDCs and LEDCs
  • Sustainable regeneration of cities

Unit 2 – Natural Hazards and Global Tourism

  • Earthquakes, Volcanoes, Hurricanes and Wildfires
  • Growth, impacts and management of tourism
  • Tourism and development issues

Unit 3 – Controlled Assessment

  • Fieldwork Investigation – Write up fieldwork (15%)
  • Issue Evaluation – Internet research report (10%)

Residential fieldtrip e.g. to Bewerley Park – three days of fieldwork and outdoor activities.

Assessment

  • Units 1-2 exams at the end of Year 11 (75%)
  • Unit 3 – project work during lessons end of Year 10 and start of Year 11 (25%)

Students follow the AQA Syllabus which in AS covers topics such as rivers, coasts, population and food supply. At A2 students will investigate natural hazards, climate, world cities and development/globalisation issues. Students enjoy learning in an engaging environment where their curiosity regarding the complex interconnections in the world is allowed to develop. Students are expected to show initiative by independently researching geographical events. Students get the opportunity to go the Cranedale Centre in the Yorkshire Wolds to carry out first hand investigations into farming (environmental stewardship issues and intensification), rivers (downstream changes in a river profile) and coasts (evaluate contrasting management strategies to coastal erosion). Students also get the opportunity to go to Iceland with Discover the World where fieldwork is carried out about tectonic forces, the impacts of volcanic activity, geothermal energy and tourism. Many students become passionate geographers and further their geographical studies at university and several students have progressed on to having careers inspired by their geographical experiences.

Exam board specification