Subject Intent

Jarrow School Geography Department intends to provide a deep and knowledge-rich curriculum that inspires a curiosity in the world and contributes to a life-long interest in the home of humans, the Earth. It is intended to provide a curriculum that enables all pupils, regardless of background, to confidently enter into discussions regarding current geographical issues and to make sense of the world around them.  Geography is open to study by all learners across both key stages, regardless of need or ability. 

The aim of the curriculum is to teach pupils about diverse places, including natural and human environments, beyond their own locality. As pupils progress, their growing knowledge about the world should help to deepen their understanding of the interactions between physical and human worlds, and of the formation of landscapes and environments. Geographical knowledge, understanding and skills provide the frameworks and approaches that explain how the Earth’s features are shaped, interconnected and change over time. 

Geographers at Jarrow School will learn how to think, speak, study and write like geographers. The Geography curriculum aims to help pupils to think independently and systematically, to consider the reliability of knowledge and argument, and to learn how to make their own choices about how to live. In doing so the Geography curriculum inexplicitly prepares pupils for life, further study and employment.

Key Stage 3 Overview

Year 7

Autumn Term
Spring Term
Summer Term
Half Term 1 Half Term 2 Half Term 3 Half Term 4 Half Term 5 Half Term 6

Refresher Curriculum

At Jarrow School we want all students to be able to access future Geography lessons equally.  Our refresher includes a baseline assessment and follow-up scheme of work to narrow gaps in foundation knowledge whilst building rapidly on taught skills. Students are introduced to geographical conventions whilst reinforcing core knowledge and vocabulary.

Around the world in 18 days

A transition to secondary geography. Students explore a number of distant localities including Russia, India and the Middle East as well as investigating the foundation of the UK, it’s soils and geology.  An introduction to mapping, geographical skills, exploring places as well as what makes a good geographer.

How do Glaciers change the world?

An opportunity to explore physical landscapes of the UK and beyond. To consider the role of ice in the past and present. Pupils will investigate how key physical processes of erosion and deposition shape the land to produce some of our most incredible landscapes. 

8 billion and counting

Our first full introduction to human geography, this investigates population change and concerns. Connecting current affairs and issues with future population concerns and issues. Pupils will be introduced to data presentation methods central to population geography.

Wild weather and constant climate

Building on familiar ideas from primary topics to introduce physical geography and how we study it. Considering a common topic of conversation in the UK, pupils learn the factors affecting weather and climate and why we get so much rain.  Spring term offers some opportunity to get outside in school grounds, as well as the possibility of the hazard of wildfires and tropical storms.

Africa is not a country 
Zoom in on Kenya

A regional study of the spatial uniqueness and diversity of an amazing continent. An opportunity to dispel stereotypes and general misconceptions regarding the continent. Placed toward the end of the year to encourage synoptic links and build on the skills developed during and throughout their first year.


Year 8

Autumn Term
Spring Term
Summer Term
Half Term 1 Half Term 2 Half Term 3 Half Term 4 Half Term 5 Half Term 6

Climate Chaos – can we save planet Earth

A concern close to the hearts of young Geographers who need to know the facts sooner rather than later. An opportunity to explore our role as global citizens and make a positive impact. Students will be taught the facts and be given the opportunity to explore opinions about climate change.

Postcards from paradise

A first look this year at careers in a global and growing industry which may inspire our students. Timed to bring some sunshine as the light fades this unit investigates positive and negative impacts of tourism whilst learning about the changes affecting this sector.

Once upon a Coal mine - Earning a Living

Continuing to consider the local and the global perspective, pupils will investigate how employment patterns change over time and space. They will evaluate the contributions of technology, globalisation and government policy.

GIS and the geographer’s tools of the trade

Students will be introduced to digital mapping techniques. Students will reinforce their understanding of the process of Geographical Enquiry through small local investigations.

Our unequal world – international development

Building on our knowledge of the world around us and an opportunity to really question the world in which we live. Pupils will be taught about variation in development as well as the causes and consequences. Pupils will consider the work of NGOs decision of how to address issues of uneven development.

Asia – China today

A synoptic unit with the chance to explore another continent. To put all new knowledge and skills in to practice and context. Students will investigate opportunities and challenges including the impact of tectonic hazards.


Year 9

Autumn Term
Spring Term
Summer Term
Half Term 1 Half Term 2 Half Term 3 Half Term 4 Half Term 5 Half Term 6

Extreme Weather!

Is our weather changing? How do droughts and floods affect the UK? Are other regions experiencing the same extreme weather patterns as here in the UK? Pupils will learn about the interaction between physical and human geography, how we are affected by, and how we attempt to manage extreme events.

Can Holderness Hold on - Crumbling Coasts

One of our most dynamic environments – pupils will learn about coastal processes and how they result in change. They will explore interactions between the natural and the human environment. Many pupils will have visited coastal regions during the summer break and have their own experience to bring. Pupils will work on their ability to explain whilst building an extensive vocabulary.  A chance to attempt some serious decision making whilst revisiting geographical skills.

Global Biomes

Our natural worlds are vast and diverse.  Pupils will pull together knowledge from their study of Africa, Asia, climate and soils to examine wilderness regions and global ecosystems. Building their locational knowledge of the world around us.

Can we Save the Amazon? -  Tropical Rainforests study

An awe-inspiring opportunity to explore the global diversity from an environmental viewpoint. Pupils will be introduced to the climate and wildlife of the Tropical Rainforest.  Pupils will investigate the importance of the Tropical Rainforest Biome and the interdependence of this environment.  With the level maturity gained by now, pupils can question whether we should judge the decisions of others to exploit their forest resources.

Global Resources – do we have enough?

Can we feed the entire world, why do we use so much water and how will we power the future? Pupils will be taught about the distribution and access the essential resources across the world and within the UK. They will undertake a complex decision-making activity.

Welcome to Lagos

What is life like in a Newly Emerging Economy? How diverse is Lagos? What is it like to live in a rapidly growing city? Why do people move to Lagos? Pupils will explore urbanisation of Lagos, Nigeria.


Key Stage 4 Overview

Jarrow follows the AQA GCSE Geography specification (8035).  This qualification is linear. Linear means that students will sit all their exams at the end of the course.

PAPER 1- Living with the physical environment

  • 3.1.1 Section A: The challenge of natural hazards
  • 3.1.2 Section B: The living world
  • 3.1.3 Section C: Physical landscapes in the UK

PAPER 2 - Challenges in the human environment

  • 3.2.1 Section A: Urban issues and challenges
  • 3.2.2 Section B: The changing economic world
  • 3.2.3 Section C: The challenge of resource management

PAPER 3 - Geographical applications

  • 3.3.1 Section A: Issue evaluation
  • 3.3.2 Section B: Fieldwork

Across all papers - Geographical skills

  • 3.4 Geographical skills

Year 10

Autumn Term
Spring Term
Summer Term
Half Term 1 Half Term 2 Half Term 3 Half Term 4 Half Term 5 Half Term 6

Paper 1 – Section A – Natural Hazards

Pupils will be introduced to a variety of natural hazards and consider why and how hazard may be increased in some areas of the world.

Paper 1 – Section A - Tropical Storms

Pupils will learn about the distribution and impacts of tropical storms through an example.  An exciting topic to challenge and engage the pupils at the beginning of their GCSE course. This is completely new to them but is built on prior knowledge and coincides with the major hurricane/typhoon season. Pupils will be introduced to a range of exam questions.

Paper 1 – Section B - Hot Desert Biome

An opportunity to build on prior KS3 knowledge and reinforce understanding of global biomes.  

Pupils will be taught about the distribution, ecosystem and opportunities of hot deserts through a detailed case study. Pupils will be taught about desertification.  Desertification is a complex issue that relies on understanding the intertwined threads of climate change, population change and ecosystems.

Revise & refresh

Pupils will revise prior learning in lessons and part of revision homework. Pupils will complete timed assessments to develop examination skills.

Paper 2 – Section A - Urbanisation and Megacities 

Pupils will learn about the changing patterns of the urbanising world. A chance revise and connect prior learning from KS3.

Paper 2 – Section A - UK population & Case Study of a Major UK City: London

Pupils investigate the distribution of the UK population before embarking on an in-depth study of London.  The UK’s biggest and most important city provides an engaging case-study of opportunities and challenges for urban life in the UK. Pupils will consider how urban areas can become sustainable, balancing the economy, environment and social needs of their communities.

Paper 1 – Section A – Climate Change

Building on their KS3 studies, pupils will take a more detailed look at the causes and consequences of climate change. With an in-depth study of the methods of how to limit the causes and adapted to the consequences they will form a links to other units throughout the course.

Paper 3 – Section B – Fieldwork and the Enquiry Process – Coastal Primary Data Collection

Pupils will practise the enquiry process from conducting their own risk assessment to analysing data. Pupils will apply their knowledge to unfamiliar locations, data and examples of fieldwork investigations.


Year 11

Autumn Term
Spring Term
Summer Term
Half Term 1 Half Term 2 Half Term 3 Half Term 4 Half Term 5 Half Term 6

Paper 3 – Section B – Fieldwork Enquiry - Are sustainable transport schemes effective?

Pupils will apply their fieldwork skills to a human environment.  They will collect primary data and present this using suitable techniques. Pupils will evaluate their conclusions and data presentation.

Refresh & Revise

Pupils will complete timed questions in class and revision as part of weekly homework.

Paper 1 – Section C – River Landscapes

Pupils will explore river landscapes, enhancing and building confidence of the physical geography of the UK and linking closely with coastal landscapes. Pupils will investigate river landforms along the River Tees, causes of flooding and management schemes.

Paper 2 – Section A - Urbanisation and Megacities

Pupils will learn about the changing patterns of the urbanising world. A chance revise and connect prior learning from KS3.

Paper 2 – Section A - UK population & Case Study of a Major UK City: London

Pupils investigate the distribution of the UK population before embarking on an in-depth study of London.  The UK’s biggest and most important city provides an engaging case-study of opportunities and challenges for urban life in the UK. Pupils will consider how urban areas can become sustainable, balancing the economy, environment and social needs of their communities.

Mock Exam

Pupils will sit full length examinations and have the opportunity to evaluate strengths and areas for improvement.

Refresh & Revise

Pupils will continue to focus on targeted improvements from their mock exam as well as regular recall in class and at home.

Paper 2 – Section B – Changing Economic World – The Development Gap

Pupils will discuss how development is measured and portrayed. A complex and current topic linked to the conversation around decolonising knowledge. Pupils will investigate the causes and consequences of the global development gap alongside strategies to reduce this.

Paper 2 – Section B – Changing Economic World – A Case Study of Economic Change in a LIC/NEE

Pupils will examine a named country. They will learn about the economic changes in the context of Nigeria including the role of TNCs and international trade. They will how economic change has social and environmental impacts.

Paper 2 – Section B – Changing Economic World – The UK Economy

Pupils will be taught about deindustrialisation and the post-industrial economy of the UK. They will learn about the decline of traditional industry and attempt to comprehend the economics of the UK north-south divide. Economic Geography has implications for careers and employment patterns as well as patterns of growth and decline in the UK. Human Geography requires a complexity and depth of English language skills to support learning and developing written answers which will challenge even our more able Geographers.

Paper 2 – Section C – Managing Resources: Energy Option

Pupils will consider the complexity of energy supply and demands as well as the need to increase supplies.

Paper 3 – Section A - Issue Evaluation

A synoptic unit pulling together all prior skills and linking all four Assessment Objectives. Taught when pupils have had the greatest opportunity to develop skills and understanding across a broad curriculum. This year the focus looks at a Waste Incinerator near Cambridge.

Ongoing revision for terminal exams.

Timetabled revision lessons and focus workshops for groups and/or individuals.

PAPER 1- Living with the physical environment

  • May TBC - 1hr 30min

PAPER 2 - Challenges in the human environment

  • June TBC - 1hr 30min

PAPER 3 - Geographical applications

  • June TBC - 1hr 15mins


Additional Curriculum Information

Most Able

Students identified as Most Able may be given greater opportunities for extended writing or use of a more formal voice. Students may be stretched using extension activities and challenging questioning. Students may be given the opportunity to share expertise with a class or be challenged through reading materials. 


Geography at Jarrow school is open to study by all learners across both key stages, regardless of need or ability.  Classroom practice enables all students to access the curriculum. Teaching aims for the top, alongside scaffolding to meet the needs of learners. Accessing the curriculum is more challenging for some students than others, and this is where teacher skill and expertise is applied to meet individual needs. Strategies to support students may include support accessing more difficult vocabulary or sentence starters for answering questions. 

Assessment – Impact 

Throughout their Geography lessons, pupils will be assessed on their geographical knowledge, understanding and skills. Pupils will be tested regularly using low-stakes quizzing, checking for understanding as well as key word tests.  One piece of work will be identified per half-term for the purpose of assessment. This will usually be an examination or a piece of extended writing. At key stage three, assessment tasks will be differentiated to meet the ability of the students and allow all pupils to succeed.  At key stage four, assessment will initially provide support and structure, but there will be a gradual release leading to greater independence, enabling pupils to feel confident in their approach to terminal examinations. Whole-class feedback will identify any common misconceptions and SPaG errors including Geographical terminology.  Following teacher marking, pupils will be required to improve some aspect of the identified task as directed by their teacher. 


Throughout KS3 homework is set at least once per each half-term. Homework includes learning new vocabulary in preparation for tests, researching related issues and completing worksheet questions. Pupils may also be set work via the Educake platform which is marked online.

Pupils following the GCSE curriculum at KS4 receive homework each fortnight as a minimum.  Most homework tasks are linked to exam preparation either through specific revision tasks or by deepening and reinforcing understanding. Homework also includes correcting or improving written answers.  The current year 11 pupils complete revision homework every week using online revision websites.

Beyond the curriculum

Students are provided with enrichment opportunities such as learning outside of the classroom and extra-curricular clubs. For the past academic year Geog-Club has been jointly led by subject ambassadors and aimed at provided KS3 pupils with a less formal approach to Geographical understanding. In 2022, a group of Year 9 pupils completed a Geography confidence-building residential trip to the Lake District and Year 11 have undertaking extensive fieldwork along the Durham coastline.

Literacy & Subject Specific Vocabulary

Pupils frequently read in Geography lessons.  At key stage three, a core textbook provides a high-quality resource used in teaching.  At key stage four numerous texts are used to support learning.  All pupils are given opportunities to develop reading through a number of ‘guided reading’ tasks within lessons.

All key stage three pupils are provided with a key word glossary towards the start of any new topic. Pupils are tested in their understanding of these in lessons.

In key stage four, pupils are provided with a fact-file document that summarises all key concepts and gives a clear definition of vocabulary needed to access the topic. Pupils use this vocabulary in lessons and may be asked to learn terms for homework.

Unit 2: 20th Century Depth Studies

Section A The Roaring 20s: USA 1919-1929

Section B Depression and the New Deal: The USA, 1929-1941

Section C War in Vietnam, 1964-1975

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Jarrow School
Field Terrace
Tyne & Wear
NE32 5PR

Tel: 0191 4283200
Fax: 0191 4283202

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