“Geography illuminates the past, explains the present and prepares us for the future - what could be more important than that?”
- Michael Palin
Former President of the Royal Geographical Society.
At The Westgate School, we believe that Geography is a challenging, motivating, topical and engaging subject. In our diverse society, students need to understand other people and cultures. We believe that geographical knowledge, concepts and skills are essential components of a broad and balanced curriculum and help to prepare students to progress through their lives as successful global citizens. The topics we have selected will not only cultivate an interest in the world around us, but it will also equip students with the knowledge and skills required to succeed as geographers. Our aim is to create independent learners, critical thinkers and decision-makers.
During Year 7 and Year 8, students at The Westgate School study geography once a week. The geography curriculum allows students the opportunity to study a wide range of physical and human Geography at a variety of local, national and international scales. Each of the continents is studied in turn with each of the selected geographical themes being taught in the context of each continent. This allows students build up their knowledge in each of the themes whilst also studying examples from across the world and developing their understanding of how geography affects people in different ways.
In year 9 students will study the geographical themes and analytical skills that are necessary to ensure they are ready for GCSE.
There is a focus throughout Key Stage 3 on key geographical language and on reading about current issues facing the world such as climate change, urbanisation or migration.
From the last term of year 9 students will study GCSE Geography based on the AQA GCSE Geography specification, which examines ‘Living with the Physical Environment’, ‘Challenges in the Human Environment’ and ‘Geographical Applications’. GCSE Geography is assessed via 3 examinations. The course does involve two days of fieldwork outside of school, we currently visit Bristol City Centre and Hengistbury Head on the South Coast.
The content studied during GCSE in Year 9, Year 10 and Year 11 will use the AQA GCSE Geography specification and the topics studied include: the challenge of natural hazards; the living world; physical landscapes in the UK; urban Issues and challenges; the changing economic world and the challenge of resource management.