Geography Curriculum intent

Geography is a focus within the curriculum for understanding and resolving issues about the environment and sustainable development. Pupils leave Ark Victoria with an understanding of geographical concepts and citizenship at a local, national and global scale. Challenging, abstract concepts are explored within the context of our local area, providing pupils with a sense of their heritage and identity. They will take a keen interest in the geography around them. This will allow them to understand the interdependence of the human and physical world, not as isolated themes, but interweaved approaches to understand the complex world we live in.  They appreciate social and cultural differences and can articulate our collective responsibility to protect the environment, underpinned by an understanding of social and moral ethics. 

Our Geography Six Pillars

At Ark Victoria we have 6 curriculum pillars.  

Resilient readers: Our school prioritises reading as we understand that pupils need to be effective readers in order to be successful in life; all pupils will be given strategies and support as well as opportunities to read confidently and fluently, to ensure that they are able to securely access the whole curriculum and read at or above chronological reading age. Within geography, pupils are taught how to read extended texts and extract the most valuable information to support their breadth and depth of subject knowledge. Vocabulary is very important, and we ensure pupils understand the appropriate geographical vocabulary through explicit teaching and having agreed terminology across our school.  

High quality teaching: Teachers are passionate subject experts and experts in age-appropriate pedagogy with an excellent understanding of the geography they teach, the geography curriculum and the learning journey for pupils. Our teachers understand what excellence looks like within each phase, and work together to ensure the transition from primary to secondary is secure, as a result of a shared language and approaches, as well as ensuring pupils reach the end goals. We follow a mastery approach ensuring our pupils become fluent in the fundamentals of geography, they are given opportunities so they: can enquire geographically, analyse the world around them and strengthen their ability to present their findings; whilst developing their character, including resilience, confidence, and independence, so that they can contribute positively to the life of the school, their local community, and the wider environment.  

Knowledge rich curriculum: Our curriculum design enables pupils to make good progress in each subject discipline through the explicit teaching of core disciplinary concepts and knowledge. The curriculum is planned and sequenced using our mastery approach so that new knowledge and skills build on what has been taught before. Knowledge is selected for its power in developing expertise in the subject discipline. Explicit teaching of tier 2 and 3 vocabularies, as well as strategies for learning vocabulary are built into our geography curriculum, which has clearly defined end points.  

High ambition: raising aspirations and outcomes: Teachers’ expectations are high for every child. Curriculum adaptation and judicious interventions ensure that all pupils make good progress. Teachers work hard to scaffold each lesson and ensure access to the full curriculum, rather than narrowing the offer, through the mastery approach and delivering more depth of the curriculum over breadth. Pupils understand the opportunities that school, qualifications, and a university education will afford and the importance of geographical skills within that and are provided with clear guidance about careers and pathways.  

Diverse and inclusive: our curriculum is consciously inclusive and seeks to support pupils of all backgrounds, experiences, and protected characteristics to access and enjoy our aspirational curricula. An authentic and truthful study of each subject celebrates and acknowledges that diverse bodies of people have generated and evolved the powerful knowledge in our subjects and have made our disciplines what they are. We recognise the importance of developing and valuing our learners’ voice; our focus on oracy helps develop confidence, the ability to express views and build on the contributions of others. Within geography lessons, ‘talk partners’ or ‘think, pair, share’ is used throughout each lesson to give pupils the opportunities to practice oracy and we explicitly teach pupils how to appropriately respond to each other while building a strong culture of error.  

Strong Character and enrichment: our curriculam build pupils’ understanding of themselves as learners, as well as understanding the importance of values and virtues in helping to live a fulfilled and happy life. We make explicit connections not only between subjects but also between the different areas and concepts in geography.  

Geography Topic Map


Autumn 1

Autumn 2

Spring 1

Spring 2

Summer 1

Summer 2



















Enquiry Q: Why are rainforests important?


Enquiry Q: What are the similarities and differences between Rio de Janeiro in Brazil and Birmingham in the UK?


City of Birmingham

Enquiry Q: Where do I live?





Enquiry Q: Who does Australia belong to?



Enquiry Q: How can we protect our oceans?

The Seaside

Enquiry Q: How have seasides changed over timer?





Enquiry Q: How can we prevent the effects of an earthquake?


Settlements and land use

Enquiry Q: How has land use changed over time in the UK and its former territories?





Enquiry Q: How have human interactions with volcanoes changed over time?


Trade Links

Enquiry Q: How has global trade changed over time?







Enquiry Q: Is global governance needed?


Enquiry Q: How have rivers shaped the UK?


Enquiry Q: Why are the world's mountains so important?






Climate Zones and Climate Change

Enquiry Q: How is climate change affecting our planet?



Enquiry Q: Will the need for asylum ever end? 


Where am I?

Enquiry Q: What is my personal geography?

Our planet

Enquiry Q: What makes planet Earth habitable for life?

Resources and trade

Enquiry Q: Describe the different types of work around the world.

Brilliant biomes

Enquiry Q: How do the characteristics of hot deserts and tropical rainforests compare?

Fantastic Landscapes of the UK

Enquiry Q: How are rocks formed?

UK Coasts

Enquiry Q: What happened to the lost villages of Holderness?


River Rivals 

Enquiry Q: How will the GERD impact the Nile River basin?

Food and Famine

Enquiry Q: Are physical or human factors more important in food security?

Endless Energy

Enquiry Q: Are renewables a silver bullet?

Climate Change

Enquiry Q: What is being done about climate change?

Polar Environment 

Enquiry Q: Why did the Nennet’s reindeer die in 2014?

The Middle East – A Regional Study 

Enquiry Q: Why is there often conflict in the Middle East?


Global Oceans (tectonics and global processes)

Enquiry Q: Explain the importance of oceans

Ocean Biomes and Governance 

Enquiry Q: What are the threats facing our oceans?

The Global Economy

Enquiry Q: To what extent is globalisation good for all?

Development Disparity

Enquiry Q: Does India’s Geography help or hinder its development?

Glacial Landforms and Processes

Enquiry Q: What evidence of glaciation is shown in the OS map extract of Snowdonia?

Independent Project – My UK Region

Enquiry Q: How does the geography of my local area compare with the Lake District?


Natural Hazards

Natural Hazards and Urban Issues and Challenges

Urban Issues and Challenges and Living World

Living World and Physical landscapes in the UK

Physical landscapes in the UK

Revision and Physical Geography Fieldwork


Resource Management and Changing Economic World Changing Economic World and Revision Revision Revision and Pre-release Issue Evaluation Revision Revision and Exam