St Bernadette Catholic Primary School


Geography at St Bernadette



At St Bernadette we aim to provide a high-quality geography education that should inspire in children a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. The children will learn about diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments. They will also learn about the Earth’s key physical and human processes. As pupils progress from Early Years Foundation Stage to Key Stage One and Key Stage Two, their growing knowledge about the world should help them to deepen their understanding of the interaction between physical and human processes, and of the formation and use of landscapes and environments. This geographical knowledge provides the basis for understanding and explaining how the Earth’s features are shaped, interconnected and change over time.


Our Geography Provision and Curriculum

The national curriculum for geography aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • Develop contextual knowledge of the location of globally significant places, including their defining physical and human characteristics.
  • Understand the processes that give rise to key physical and human geographical features of the world and how these change over time.
  • Develop their geographical skills so that information can be collected and interpreted from a range of sources, analysed and communicated effectively.


In the Early Years Foundation Stage, Understanding the world involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places and the environment.


In Key Stage 1, children will develop their locational and place knowledge by learning about the world’s seven continents and five oceans. They will learn about the United Kingdom and their locality. They should understand basic subject-specific vocabulary relating to human and physical geography and begin to use geographical skills, including first-hand observation, to enhance their locational awareness.


Human and physical geography will involve children learning about significant places in the world and they will compare the human and physical geographical features of a small area of the United Kingdom with a small area in a contrasting non-European country. They will learn about seasonal and daily weather patterns in the United Kingdom and the location of hot and cold areas of the world in relation to the Equator and the North and South Poles. Children will learn to use basic geographical vocabulary to refer to key physical and human geographical features.  


Geographical and field work skills will be developed by using; world maps, atlases, globes, compasses and aerial photographs.


In Key Stage 2, children should develop their locational and place knowledge by extending their knowledge and understanding beyond the local area to include the United Kingdom, Europe, North America and South America. This will involve children using maps to locate the world’s countries, including the United Kingdom, as well as identifying key physical and human characteristics. They will learn to identify key topographical features, including; hills, mountains, coasts and rivers.  Children will also learn about the position and significance of latitude, longitude, Equator, Northern Hemisphere, Southern Hemisphere, the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, Arctic and Antarctic Circle, the Prime/Greenwich Meridian and time zones. They will compare the human and physical geographical features of a region of the United Kingdom, a region in a European country, and a region within North or South America.


Physical geography will include the children understanding and being able to describe; climate zones, biomes and vegetation belts, rivers, mountains, volcanoes and earthquakes, and the water cycle. Human geography will include looking at; types of settlement and land use, economic activity including trade links, and the distribution of natural resources including energy, food, minerals and water.


Geographical and fieldwork skills will be developed by using; maps, atlases, globes and ICT resources. Children will learn to use; the eight points of a compass, four and six-figure grid references, the symbols and keys used in Ordnance Survey maps. Work will be presented using a range of methods, including sketch maps, plans and graphs, and digital technologies.