Geography is a subject packed with excitement and dynamism that synthesises aspects of the world and helps us to better understand its people, places and environments, and the interactions between them. Geography also helps us understand how and why places are changing, and to better imagine, predict and work towards, likely and preferred futures. Underpinning all of this is a strong spatial component that deepens our understanding of what places are like, why and how they are connected, and the importance of location.
Enabling pupils to take on the role of geographer: exploring, discovering and beginning to make sense of the world around them is an important consideration when planning for the seven areas of inter-connected learning and development that make up the EYFS framework. In particular the area entitled ‘Understanding the world’ presents the opportunity for pupils to reflect on the events and routines that they and their peers experience. They should be given the opportunity to formulate
questions, to investigate the similarities and differences that exist and be encouraged to discuss these with interest and sensitivity. Through role-play the children can learn experientially about the different environments that exist and explain why some things happen the way they do in both the physical and human world.
Spiritual, moral, social and cultural development
· Spiritual development: Through helping pupils to recognise the beauty and diversity of the world. A geographical awareness helps children understand their place in the world. Geography provides opportunities for children to learn about sites of wonder, or physical features that they might wish to visit in the future, for example Chichen Itza.
· Moral development: Through helping pupils to reflect on how the environment is affected by decisions made by people, so that the children can make informed choices in the future. Through discussion, the children learn to appreciate the moral dilemmas posed by introducing changes to the environment (for example, building a motorway) and the effects this can have on the surrounding area.
· Social development: Through helping pupils to understand the need to consider the views of others when discussing localities, settlements and the environment. Work on a locality in a less economically developed country provides an opportunity to discuss social issues. Fieldwork encourages collaborative projects, making the most of different strengths and interests within a team.
· Cultural development: By exploring different settlements, the children can gain knowledge of different cultures, learning tolerance and understanding of their diversity.
Below are outlined the expectations for each key stage as set out in in the National Curriculum.