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 students, 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 students about diverse places, including natural and human environments, beyond their own locality. As students’ 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 students 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 students 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.

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, students 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.


7 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. Students will be introduced to data presentation methods central to population geography.

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.

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. Students will be taught about variation in development as well as the causes and consequences. Students will consider the work of NGOs decision of how to address issues of uneven development.


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.

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

Crumbing Coasts

One of our most dynamic environments – students will learn about coastal processes and how they result in change. They will explore interactions between the natural and the human environment. Many students will have visited coastal regions during the summer break and have their own experience to bring. Students 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 and Tropical Rainforests study

An awe-inspiring opportunity to explore the global diversity from an environmental viewpoint. Students will be introduced to global biomes including the climate and wildlife of the Tropical Rainforest.  Students will investigate the importance of the Tropical Rainforest Biome and the interdependence of this environment.  With the level maturity gained by now, students 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? Students 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? Students 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 Tropical Storms

Students will learn about the distribution and impacts of tropical storms through examples.  An exciting topic to challenge and engage the students 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. Students will be introduced to a range of exam questions.

Paper 1 – Section B Hot Desert Biome

Students will be taught about the distribution, ecosystem and opportunities of hot deserts through a detailed case study. An opportunity to build on prior KS3 knowledge and reinforce understanding of global biomes. 

Hot Desert continued…

Students will be taught about desertification.  Desertification is a complex issue that relies on understanding the intertwined threads of climate change, population change and ecosystems.

Paper 1 – Section A Tectonics

Students will learn about different types of plate boundaries and study examples form countries at differing stages of development.  Students will build on knowledge from key stage three. To grasp all of these complexities they will need to build on prior cartographic and study skills to access and comprehend this unit.

Paper 1 – Section C Coastal Landscapes

Students will learn about marine and sub-aerial process which produce distinctive coastal landscape around the UK.  Students will investigate coastal landforms along the North Sea coast including Holderness and Seaham.

Paper 3 – Fieldwork Primary Data Collection in Durham and Seaham

The absolute best way to study Geography, for real as Geographers in the field. An amazing opportunity to put theory to the test whilst learning the conventions of the enquiry process.


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


After a tumultuous two years, students will begin with a refresher of work completed during the various lockdown events. Following a return assessment key concepts will be reviewed and misconception addressed.

Paper 1 – Section C River Landscapes

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

Mock Exam

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

Paper 2 – Section A - Urbanisation and Megacities

Students will learn about the changing patterns of the urbanising world. A chance to explore a memorable, exhilarating and exciting city in a Low-Income Country or Emerging Economy.

Urbanisation continued

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 A - UK population & Case Study of a Major UK City: London

Students 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. Students will consider how urban areas can become sustainable, balancing the economy, environment and social needs of their communities.

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

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

Paper 2 – Section C Managing Resources: Energy Option

Students 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 students 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

PAPER 2 - Challenges in the human environment

PAPER 3 - Geographical applications



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, students will be assessed on their geographical knowledge, understanding and skills. Students 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 students 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 students 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, students 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. Students may also be set work via the Educake platform which is marked online.

Students 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 student’s 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 students with a less formal approach to Geographical understanding. Year 9 students have 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

Students 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 students are given opportunities to develop reading through a number of ‘guided reading’ tasks within lessons.

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

In key stage four, students are provided with a fact-file document that summarises all key concepts and gives a clear definition of vocabulary needed to access the topic. Students 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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