“Geography illuminates the past, explains the present and prepares us for the future - what could be more important than that?” - Michael Palin, 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 GCSE Foundation in 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. Students will develop the foundations of map skills and global connections in Year 7 and work on development, coastal environments, weather and climate and ecosystems in Year 8. The content studied during GCSE Foundation in Year 7 and Year 8 will be of a GCSE standard and uses the AQA GCSE Geography specification to prepare students for the rigours and demands of the full-GCSE course using a ‘spiralled curriculum’ model. We believe that this approach reflects the Humanities Departments high standards expected of every student within our care.
In Year 9, Year 10 and Year 11, 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 using two examinations that are each 1 hour and 30 minutes long and account for 70% of the overall GCSE Geography mark. The Controlled Assessment is worth 30% of the final GCSE Geography mark. 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.