Aims of the Department
Geography provides students with a deeper understanding of the world around them. In the next 50 years, the world is due to change more than it ever has done before and the Geography team at Trinity aim to help prepare our students for these changes. We want our students to see Geography as important, interesting, topical and relevant.
Strengths of the Department
We employ a variety of innovative teaching styles in the Geography department so that all students are able to reach their full potential. We tend not to rely heavily on textbooks but use them as a resource to dip in and out of.
We use thinking skills activities to great effect and have used the school’s excellent ICT facilities to provide opportunities for students to research major world issues and events such as the recent World Cup.
As well as the subject content, we also ensure that students are taught a variety of skills that they will need for their further education and employment. This includes data analysis, presentation skills, graphical skills, team work and independent learning.
We have forged links with Manchester University that have involved collaboration with the Archaeology and Anthropology departments. We have also successfully run volunteering opportunities where undergraduate and postgraduate students have helped our GCSE students with their internet researching skills. We run a successful fieldtrip to a local National Park each year in order for our GCSE students to collect data for their controlled assessments.
End of KS3 levels have improved year on year since 2012 and the number of students opting to take Geography at GCSE level has tripled since 2012.
KS3 Geography Curriculum
With the new National Curriculum there has been a move towards taking Geography back to basics.
In Year 7, students begin their Geographical education by studying the meaning of Geography and learning basic geographical fieldwork skills such as surveying and field sketching. We also learn how to read maps and complete a unit of work on worldwide locational knowledge. Students will also study diverse topics such as the weather, people and cities, climate change and China.
In Year 8 we begin with an emphasis on geomorphology – how the world around us is shaped by natural processes. Students will learn about river processes and features, coastal processes and features and glacial processes and features before moving onto a small unit of work all about flooding and its impacts on rich and poor countries. The second half of Year 8 is more human Geography orientated so students will learn all about development, aid and the role of charities in helping to relieve poverty. The final unit is all about the very topical and controversial issue of globalisation and we study the impacts of this through the global fashion industry.
In Year 9 there is more of a mix of physical and human geography. We begin with a unit of work entitled ‘The Restless Earth’ which is all about plate tectonics, earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanic eruptions – this tends to be very popular with students. The next unit focuses again on cities in particular urban morphology and urban models before looking at the issue of crimes in cities and where crimes may happen. During Year 9 we also learn about a variety of ecosystems namely the tropical rainforest, deserts and the tundra. The final unit of work is all about the geography of Africa.
KS4 Geography Curriculum
In Year 10, students will begin to learn the new AQA GCSE Geography Qualification. This offers a broad range of topics that have some familiarity from KS3 and also some new content. As with most subjects, there is now no controlled assessment and the final grade is awarded based on the results of three examinations.
Paper 1 – Living with the Physical Environment
- The Challenge of Natural Hazards
- The Living World
- Physical Landscapes of the UK
Paper 2 – Challenges in the Human Environment
- Urban Issues & Challenges
- The Changing Economic World
- The Challenge of Resource Management
Paper 3 – Geographical Applications
- Issue Evaluation
- Fieldwork Skills
Fieldwork is still an important element of all GCSE Geography courses and to this end there will be fieldwork opportunities in human and physical geography. The geographical skills needed to carry out effective fieldwork will be assessed in Paper 3.
KS5 Geography Curriculum
In the sixth form students follow the OCR AS and A Level course. This combines a number of core and optional units of study. The units are a mix of traditional geographical topics as well as more contemporary topics that prepare students for further study at higher education.
- Coastal Landscape Systems
- Changing Spaces; Making Places
- Hazardous Earth
- Fieldwork skills
- Earth’s Life Support Systems
- Global Migration & Human Rights
- Disease Dilemmas
- Independent Investigation
If students complete the full A Level then there is a piece of coursework that accounts for 20% of the total qualification. Students begin the preparation for this during the summer term of Year 12. It is a rigorous piece of work where students design, plan and collect data for their own Independent Investigation. This can cover any area of Geography that has an interest to each student.