Introduction

The Geography Department at Bloomfield Collegiate School aims to inspire pupils throughout their study of Geography. To be aware of the world around them, to question, to investigate and find answers to the complex nature of the world they live in. Encouraging pupils to show empathy and understanding to others, developing lifelong and transferable skills gained throughout their study.  

The staff are committed to helping pupils not only develop their knowledge, understanding and skills in Geography but to assist them in their developing their role as contributors to society and the environment, to see their importance in shaping the future of our planet. 

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‘Geography is the subject which holds the key to our future’

Michael Palin

KS3 Curriculum

The KS3 curriculum at Bloomfield Collegiate School Geography Department aims to develop pupils’ sense of place and offer a broad range of topics studied in both Physical and Human Geography. These alongside learning about the importance of our responsibility for planet earth ensures pupils have a well-balanced KS3 experience providing a solid grounding for further study at GCSE and A Level. 

KS3 Learning Journey

Topics for Study

Year 8 

  • Introducing Geography- A study of Physical, Human and Environmental Geography 
  • Map skills 
  • Rainfall and Weather Systems 
  • Settlement and Shopping- including Field research and Project research 
  • Country Investigation and Research Project 

Year 9 

  • Weathering and Erosion 
  • River Environments- processes and features 
  • Coastal environments- processes and features
  • Economic Activity-  including Field research and Project 
  • Population and Migration 
  • Plastics- Threat and Action 

Year 10 

  • The Growth of Tourism
  • Weather and Climate – with Field research and Project
  • Development, Fair Trade and Global Fashion
  • Challenges of Natural Hazards- Volcanoes and Earthquakes 
  • Ecosystem- including Impact of Climate Change on the Coral Reef ecosystem 
KS3 Geography Learning Journey
Geography Learning Journey

Key Stage 3 Information

Click on the following rows for more information.

  • Geography Notebook and Textbook
  • Homework Diary
  • A pencil case containing a pen, pencil, rubber and ruler
  • Colouring Pencils

At Key Stage 3 your daughter will have Geography twice a week. All homework should be recorded in her Homework Diary. It is essential that your daughter recognises the importance of completing all homework for the deadline sets. Homework is an essential part of the learning process, consolidating all work completed in class.

Homework may take the form of:

  • Completing activities from their Textbook
  • Research
  • Revision
  • Preparing presentations
  • Plotting graphs or drawing diagrams
  • Learning homeworks are extremely important and it is essential that your daughter revises thoroughly and uses effective revision strategies to develop essential transferable skills for successful lifelong learning.

In addition to homework, pupils will be assessed on the presentation, accuracy and completion of their notebooks. This is done through the Key Stage 3 Notebook Assessment Grid (a copy of which will be in your daughter’s Geography Notebook). Notebooks will be collected and assessed by your daughter’s Geography Teacher and a grade and level awarded. If her notebook falls below the required standard targets will be set for completion and improvements to presentation for a date specified by her Geography teacher.

Assessment will take place formatively through quizzes, question and answer and where appropriate peer assessment throughout the year. There will also be assessments at the end of every topic and a Summer Examination. End of Topic Assessments will be in the form of a written class test and pupils can use their ‘I am Learning….’ topic sheets inside their Geography Notebooks to remind them of essential information they need to learn for their test. All assessment is designed to help individual pupils to highlight the areas they need to develop and to set targets for improvement.

Top tips for presentation

  • All diagrams and graphs must be drawn in pencil using a ruler
  • All written work should be in blue or black pen
  • Underline titles, sub titles and key words
  • Go over work completed in the previous class before coming to the next one

Top tips for revision

  • Use the ‘I am Learning….’ topic sheets for each topic to check understanding and identify key points to learn
  • Use mind maps to summarize the main points and learning intentions of each topic
  • Use post-it notes or postcards to write out KEY DEFINITIONS and GEOGRAPHICAL VOCABULARY
  • Practice drawing and labelling diagrams
  • Ask an adult, older sibling or peers to asks questions from the notes

Useful websites to support Key Stage 3 Geography.

GCSE Geography

Geography covers a large range of skills which are needed in the world of work. For example, working as a team and collecting and interpreting information are developed through field work. Students gain many transferable skills in demand by employers: communication skills (presentation, writing, oral), teamwork, problem solving, IT skills, research skills, logic and mathematical approaches are all developed.

This is a CCEA course.

The detailed specification can be found on the CCEA Geography Website.

GCSE Geography consists of 3 units as follows:

Unit 1 – Understanding our Natural World

  • Theme A – River Environments
  • Theme B – Coastal Environments
  • Theme C – Our Changing Weather and Climate
  • Theme D – The Restless Earth

Unit 2 – Living in our World

  • Theme A – Population and Migration
  • Theme B – Changing Urban Areas
  • Theme C – Contrasts in World Development
  • Theme D – Managing our Environment

Unit 3 – Fieldwork

Examination Details

There are three examination papers:

  • Paper 1 (1hr 30) examines Unit 1 (40% of total grade)
  • Paper 2 (1hr 30) examines Unit 2 (40% of total grade)
  • Paper 3 (1hr) examines Unit 3 (20% of total grade)

There are many sources of learning in Geography such as watching DVDs, online footage, fieldwork, interpreting maps and diagrams and using simple instruments. Increasingly we use ICT and lessons are planned around the use of the Internet to access information and the use of Geographical Information Systems (GIS).

A Level Geography

There are six interesting and challenging assessment units for A-level Geography.

In Year 13 pupils will study AS Geography which accounts for 40% of the full A-level in terms of teaching content.  It consists of three Assessment Units; the weighting for each unit is as follows.

  • Paper 1 (1hr 15) examines AS1 (40% of AS) – 16% of A Level
  • Paper 2 (1hr 15) examines AS2 (40% of AS) – 16% of A Level
  • Paper 3 (1hr) examines AS3 (20% of AS) – 8% of A Level

The Assessment Units for AS level are as follows:

  • AS 1: Physical Geography
    • Fluvial Environments
    • Ecosystems
    • Weather and Climate
  • AS 2: Human Geography
    • Population Changes and Resources
    • Settlement Change
    • Development and Emerging markets
  • AS 3: Fieldwork and Skills
    • Fieldwork Skills and Graphical Techniques

Examination Details

There are three examination papers:

The full A-level comprises the AS and the remaining 60% of A-level, referred to as A2.  This is studied in Year 14.

  • Paper 1 (1hr 30) examines A21 (40% of AS) – 24% of A Level
  • Paper 2 (1hr 30) examines A22 (40% of AS) – 24% of A Level
  • Paper 3 (1hr 30) examines A23 (20% of AS) – 12% of A Level

The detailed specification can be found on the CCEA A Level Geography Website.

The Assessment Units for A2 are as follows:

  • A2 1: Physical Processes, Landforms and Management
    • Option A: Plate Tectonics: Theory and Outcomes
    • Option C: Dynamic Coastal Environments
  • A2 2: Processes and Issues in Human Geography Option C: Ethnic Diversity
    • Option C: Ethnic Diversity
    • Option D: Tourism
  • A2 3: Decision Making
    • Decision Making Exercise

Geography Field Trip

Images from our Adventure

Learning Opportunities and Fieldwork

A broad range of teaching and learning methods are adopted within the department including the opportunity for fieldwork at each Key Stage. Fieldwork has the purpose in bringing to life the Geography pupils are studying, reinforcing the classroom learning as well as offering pupils memorable experiences of fun with their peers. 

A mixture of physical and human geography fieldwork is carried out and learning reinforced with individual assessed project based work. 

  • Year 8- Settlement & Shopping fieldwork research- Ballyhackamore
  • Year 9- Economic activity -Tayto Factory visit
  • Year 10 – Weather fieldwork and project
  • GCSE – Settlement study of Newtownards
  • A Level – River Study  

Careers

There are many careers where the study of Geography is a distinct help.  Employers value the wide range of computer, research and analytical skills that Geography students bring. Careers where Geography is useful subject to have studied include: Town and country Planner, Community Development, Cartographer, GIS Specialist, Climatologist, Transportation Management, Environmental Management, Writer/Researcher, Teaching, Emergency Management, Demographer, Librarian/Information Scientist, National Park Ranger, Estate Agent.

Geography is a subject for our times. It is inherently multidisciplinary in a world that increasingly values people who have the skills needed to work across the physical and social sciences. Geographers get to learn data analysis, and to read. They learn geographic information systems. They can turn maps from a two-dimensional representation of a country’s physical contours into a tool that illustrates social attributes or attitudes: not just where people live, but how, what they think and how they vote. They learn about the physics of climate change, or the interaction of weather events and flood risk, or the way people’s behaviour is influenced by the space around them. All these are not just intrinsically interesting and valuable. They also encourage ways of seeing and thinking that make geographers eminently employable, which is why, according to the latest information from the Higher Education Careers Services Unit, only 5.8% of geography graduates were still job-hunting six months after they graduated, against an average of 7.3%.

The Guardian Newspaper

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