We want the children at Woodthorpe to develop their knowledge of people and places and to understand the physical, social and economic forces which shape those places and the lifestyles of the people who live there. Our geographical studies cover knowledge of physical and human features locally and in the wider world. They use a wide variety of sources, including maps, the internet and photos to establish the location of countries, cities, mountain ranges, rivers and seas or oceans. Children are also introduced to the economic and environmental factors which affect development and sustainability.
We use an ‘enquiry’ based approach to learning which enables the children to explore geographical questions as independent researchers. The children are encouraged to make links across the curriculum, and use skills learned in English, History, ICT, Mathematics and Science to further their learning. Field trips are also an important means of connecting the children with their locality. We hope that exposure to the cultural and environmental diversity of the world will help the children develop into caring and well informed adults of the future.
Within the Foundation Stage, these two subjects are taught under the title of “Knowledge and Understanding of the World – People and Communities”. The children discuss and investigate places and people around the world. The key skills that are taught are then extended as the pupils move up the School. They use their senses to explore the world around them and look closely at patterns and change.
Within KS1 and KS2, History and Geography are taught within the Creative Curriculum which covers all elements of the 2014 National Curriculum. This means that teachers can use their professional judgement to determine the length of time that is spent on each topic. There are, however, many objectives for each topic that need to be taught to ensure outcomes are met. These objectives for each year group are taught within the time frame allowed for their topic.
We don’t view History as simply facts and dates here at Woodthorpe, but see it as a chance to become a detective and explore the past in an exciting way. History allows our children to compare and contrast, to examine how and why things have changed, to learn about historical characters and expand their research skills and gives the children a chance to explore a wide range of sources from which the past may come alive. Children investigate and record their findings using a variety of media: through literacy, drama, art and ICT.
We want our children to be open minded and enquiring thinkers understanding cause and effect. We want them to understand how people have lived in the past and begin to make links between the past and modern times. We encourage first hand experience wherever possible; visits, interactive workshops and visiting experts play an important role.