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We teach a broad and varied Geography curriculum at South Hill, using the National Curriculum as a guide and then adapted for our pupils. Pupils will have various and exciting learning opportunities from learning about the fascinating world around them, including the seven continents and five oceans, individual countries and even Earthquakes! Pupils are regularly encouraged to develop geographical skills through practical experiences, such as map reading, orienteering and using an atlas (both traditional and through modern ICT apps and websites).


We focus on the 4 following learning areas:

  • Geographical Enquiry

  • Geographical Knowledge

  • Physical Geography

  • Human Geography


In Geography lessons, pupils look at different countries and explore physical and human geography, as well as the culture and traditions of the people that live there. The main aims of Geography at South Hill are to ensure all pupils:

  • Develop contextual knowledge of the location of globally significant places – both terrestrial and marine

  • Are competent in the geographical skills needed to:

collect, analyse and communicate with a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork that deepen their understanding of geographical processes

  • Interpret a range of sources of geographical information, including maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS)

  • Communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length.


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In KS2, pupils learn to:


Location knowledge

•locate the world’s countries, using maps to focus on Europe (including the location of Russia) and North and South America, concentrating on their environmental regions, key physical and human characteristics, countries, and major cities

•name and locate counties and cities of the United Kingdom, geographical regions and their identifying human and physical characteristics, key topographical features (including hills, mountains, coasts and rivers), and land-use patterns; and understand how some of these aspects have changed over time

•identify 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 (including day and night)


Geographical skills and fieldwork

•use maps, atlases, globes and digital/computer mapping to locate countries and describe features studied

•use the eight points of a compass, four and six-figure grid references, symbols and key (including the use of Ordnance Survey maps) to build their knowledge of the United Kingdom and the wider world

•use fieldwork to observe, measure and record the human and physical features in the local area using a range of methods, including sketch maps, plans and graphs, and digital technologies.


Human and physical geography

•describe and understand key aspects of:

•physical geography, including: climate zones, biomes and vegetation belts, rivers, mountains, volcanoes and earthquakes, and the water cycle

•human geography, including: types of settlement and land use, economic activity including trade links, and the distribution of natural resources including energy, food, minerals and water


Place knowledge

•understand geographical similarities and differences through the study of human and physical geography of a region of the United Kingdom, a region in a European country, and a region within North or South America

Our Curriculum is supported by a range of extracurricular activities, such as our ‘International Day’ event and trips. For example,

  • In Year 2, pupils visit the Seaside to help with their contrasting locality knowledge

  • In Year 5, pupils visit a trip to support their learning about rivers

  • In many year groups, pupils participate in walks around our local area


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Our Curriculum


In EYFS, pupils learn the building blocks to our Geography curriculum through the learning area ‘Understanding the World’: Pupils will learn to:

  • Understand the world around them through drawing information from a simple map and recognising some similarities and differences between the UK and other countries.

  • Look at their environment and recognise the changes around them; reading books such as ‘Handa’s Surprise’ to support their learning.


In KS1, pupils learn to:


Location knowledge

•name and locate the world’s seven continents and five oceans

•name, locate and identify characteristics of the four countries and capital cities of the United Kingdom and its surrounding seas


Place knowledge

•understand geographical similarities and differences through studying the human and physical geography of a small area of the United Kingdom, and of a small area in a contrasting non-European country


Human and physical geography

•identify 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

•use basic geographical vocabulary to refer to:

okey physical features, including: beach, cliff, coast, forest, hill, mountain, sea, ocean, river, soil, valley, vegetation, season and weather

okey human features, including: city, town, village, factory, farm, house, office, port, harbour and shop


Geographical skills and fieldwork

•use world maps, atlases and globes to identify the United Kingdom and its countries, as well as the countries, continents and oceans studied at this key stage

•use simple compass directions (North, South, East and West) and locational and directional language (e.g. ‘near’ and ‘far’; ‘left’ and ‘right’) to describe the location of features and routes on a map

•use aerial photographs and plan perspectives to recognise landmarks and basic human and physical features; devise a simple map; and use and construct basic symbols in a key

•use simple fieldwork and observational skills to study the geography of their school and its grounds and the key human and physical features of its surrounding environment.




Examples of knowledge organisers

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