Why Choose Geography?
Geography is important, because it opens our eyes; a landscape is no longer a static feature, but a complex battleground of physical and human interactions. Local is no longer local, but a collision point for the interaction of many ‘locals’ drawn from a global stage. With technology increasingly drawing the world closer together, it is important that the role of Geography in helping the public in understanding this complex and unpredictable world is championed!
The Geography Department aims to enable all students to gain an understanding of some of the complex physical and human elements of the world they live in. The physical side of the subject encourages students to investigate how the natural systems of the planet function and how human behaviour can have beneficial or damaging impacts upon them. Issues such as the potential impacts of climate change are tackled along with the practical challenges of rising sea levels and changing natural habitats. On the human side of the subject, modules include contemporary topics and how the benefits brought to one section of global society may well be at the expense of quality of life for others. Throughout, students are encouraged to become steadily more independent in their learning as they explore and establish their own responses to the some of the many challenges facing them as they address their futures.
Curriculum | Key Stage 3
Students in years 7 cover a broad range of physical and human geographical topics including Diverse Landscapes, Globalisation, Weather, Geography of the U.K. and places and issues in Africa, which is the study of a continent that many of our students are familiar with. In year 8, students build upon their foundation of knowledge and understanding of the environment around them including the topics of Coasts, the Restless Earth, Population and Development, Our Poorly Planet and Brazil, a country study. A variety of geographical skills are embedded within all topics in years 7 and 8.
Curriculum | Key Stage 4
The department follows the AQA 8035 Specification. Having prepared the students at key stage 3, they have a secure basis upon which to build their knowledge and understanding of our complicated physical and human world. The specification at this level requires greater evaluation of the issues and problems that humans and the physical world face in the next century; including topics such as Dealing with Natural Hazards; climate change; the demands of living in an urban environment; our changing economic world and how we use and impact upon our different ecosystems. Details of this specification can be found at www.aqa.org.uk.
Curriculum | Key Stage 5
Students currently follow the AQA course 7037 specification. The course prepares our students to challenge the impact we have upon our ever changing world and our roles and responsibilities to manage our planet in a more sustainable manner. This involves many sole searching questions about how we conduct our lives in the future and the impact this has both on people and the environment. Details of this specification can be found at www.aqa.org.uk.
A level students will experience a range of fieldwork opportunities including themes related to river basin management and changing urban areas. This provides excellent opportunities for developing both personal and geographical skills, along with focused learning. They are also required to complete two further days of fieldwork in order to investigate their own personal enquiry which forms part of their A level.
A number of day trips take place. Year 7 investigate their local urban area and Year 8 will visit the Wirral coast and Liverpool to look at how the city has been regenerated. At GCSE, Geography students are required to complete two days of fieldwork: in Year 10 we study change on sand dunes at Sefton near Liverpool and with Year 11, we investigate the benefits that the Olympic Park in London has brought to the area of Stratford in London. Year 9 may also undertake a local river and urban study to prepare them for the fieldwork skills required in the GCSE. Practical and numerical skills are a major element of this new GCSE specification.
In the future, it is hoped to facilitate a trip further afield to Iceland and/or a country in Africa for years 10-13.
We feel passionately in the department, that Geography opens lots of doors to a variety of career pathways. Students develop a whole range of employability skills including numeracy, teamwork through field trips, analytical skills whereby a full range of influencing factors that affect the world are considered and a certain technical savviness through using various specialist websites where technical information is utilised and evaluated.