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Sawley Junior School


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  • Headteacher: Mrs A Burton
  • Deputy Headteacher: Mrs L Taylor



at Sawley Junior School



In Geography pupils are taught substantive or geographical knowledge and develop disciplinary knowledge aligned to the National Curriculum.

Pupils build an overview of global geography whilst also developing a deepening knowledge base.

Factual knowledge – there are four aspects that children should learn:

  • Locational knowledge
  • Place knowledge and understanding
  • Human and physical processes including environmental geography
  • Geographical skills

Disciplinary knowledge - focusing on how geographical knowledge originates and is modified over time. Children learn the practices of geographers through the acquisition of disciplinary knowledge and understand how to think and work like a geographer. It gives children an insight into how geography experts think.


Staff are supported by a Senior Subject Leader and Geography Subject Leader.

Willows Academy Trust subject leaders hold cluster meetings half-termly working together to meet the aims and vision of the Trust.

Teacher Resources – including the CQ Geography Companion and a variety of teacher guide books, teacher resources and web pages.

Lessons can be teacher led and enquiry based. Substantive knowledge taught provides children with the opportunity to acquire and develop their factual knowledge base of geographical concepts which link processes and ideas. Enquiry based learning helps pupils to develop geographical knowledge and skills and equips children to think like a geographer and to consider the world in the same way as geographers. Disciplinary knowledge is taught alongside substantive knowledge and is revisited and developed across the key stage. Map work is embedded in all units.

All pupils are engaged with the geography curriculum, differentiated for ability. No pupils are in receipt of a modified curriculum.

SEND children have resources provided which enable to them to access the same learning as everyone else.

Activities are based on a progression to deepen knowledge and understanding:

  • In Year 3, pupils learn about mapping countries and capitals in the UK and study these places to understand how the UK fits into the wider world. They study a contrasting European region i.e., Spain. Physical geography encompasses the water cycle with a particular focus on clouds and precipitation. Further locational knowledge is enhanced through the study of a volcanoes and earthquakes. Children also gain an understanding of the physical processes which cause earthquakes and volcanoes
  • In Year 4, pupils develop mapping skills further to begin mapping the world – continents and oceans; moving on to landscape locations and features of mountains, rivers etc. Location/human geography is covered through studying transportation on a national/global scale. They learn how to locate specific places on maps successfully through a variety of media.
  • In Year 5, pupils learn about international trade and how countries of the world are interlinked by a shared reliance. They study the features of North America before researching biomes and climatic zones.
  • In Year 6, pupils learn more about biomes and climates of the world developing an understanding of how climate impacts places. They also study features of the Americas – South - allowing them to make comparisons and develop their global understanding of different places and people. They learn how to read maps using different skills e.g. grid references etc.

Activities within the units of geography taught at Sawley are based on Chris Quigley POP (Proof of Progress) tasks set out in the CG Geography Companion. POP tasks develop children’s knowledge and progress in their learning from the basic acquisition of factual knowledge through the ability to explain geography. Deepening POP tasks enable pupils to draw conclusions and relate their knowledge of people and places to previous learning.




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