At The Isle of Wight Education Federation, we aim to ensure all students become secure geographers, with a broad understanding of earth processes and human interactions with it. We challenge students to think, act and speak like a geographer. All pupils from all key stages have opportunities to undertake fieldwork to build their confidence both in the subject and personally, with sixth formers undertaking their own individual investigation entirely on a topic of their choice.
The curriculum provides opportunities for collaborative working as well as independent learning. Students are explicitly taught skills, knowledge and the vocabulary needed to effectively explain and understand geographical processes. As a department, we ensure pupils obtain the knowledge they need and help them recall it by using homework and for KS4 and KS5, assisting their exam preparation. Use of regular assessment for learning, particularly using knowledge quizzes and plenary tasks.
We build upon student’s understandings of cultures by helping them to understand the contemporary world around them, removing misconceptions and widening their horizons past the Isle of Wight. Students learn about how decisions can cause change in the world around them, giving them opportunities to challenge these decisions and taking part in their own decision making exercises in class.
As a powerful bridging subject geography has strong cross curricular links to many topics the students will study in school. We ensure the level of challenge is high enough for the most able, with scaffold and support available for students who need it.
Collaborative curriculum planning lies at the heart of what we do in the department. In 2020/2021 we are working on KS3 schemes of work with The Isle of Wight Education Federation’s shift to a three year KS3, ensuring that we provide a broad curriculum for our pupils to stretch and challenge the understanding for all pupils. These are focussed on embedding geographical skills, challenge, memory techniques and literacy into our departmental curriculum.
In geography, we implement our curriculum through a variety of teaching approaches as well as a wide variety of learning and teaching resources which are constantly reviewed, improved and updated according to real world developments. This ensures our curriculum is extremely topical and relevant to the world our pupils live in. Students are taught to research, present and build problem solving skills to assist with decision making tasks they are asked to complete.
Individual pupil feedback is given in multiple ways depending on the needs of the pupil. It is valuable as it is targeted, with misconceptions identified through marking and discussions in class. Whole class feedback can be given if majority of the class misunderstands a concept. Verbal feedback on an individual basis can also be given. This is as a result of live marking in class. Written feedback is additionally given in the form of footnote marking, which is differentiated to the student’s needs and abilities, which is responded to by the student to ensure pupils are constantly making progress within the subject.