Welcome to St Bede's School Geography page

Geography is a living, breathing subject constantly adapting itself to change. It is dynamic and relevant – a subject which holds the key to our future.

Michael Palin


Geography is about more than memorising places on a map. It is about understanding the complexity of our world, appreciating the diversity of cultures that exist across continents. And in the end, it’s about using all the knowledge to help bridge divides and bring people together.

Barack Obama



At St Bede’s RC Primary School we use the National Curriculum (please see link below) as the basis of our geography programme. Our vision through well planned, well-resourced and high quality teaching is to inspire the pupils to gain a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. Not only do we want to equip the pupils with the requirements of the National Curriculum but prepare them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life as a global citizen.

The aims of our geography curriculum are for all pupils to:

  • Have a secure knowledge of where places are and what they are like both in Britain and the wider world.
  • Have an extensive bank of geographical knowledge and vocabulary.
  • Have a comprehensive understanding of the ways in which places are interdependent and interconnected.
  • Gain fluency in complex, geographical enquiry and questioning skills.
  • Reach clear conclusions and explain their findings.
  • Gain fieldwork skills as well as other geographical aptitudes and techniques.
  • Have the ability to express well-balanced opinions, based on their knowledge and understanding of current global issues both in society and the world’s environment.
  • Have a passion for the subject and a real sense of curiosity about the world and the people who live here.

The importance of feeling confident with geography and its context and relevance to their daily lives is instilled from the beginning in Early Years right through to the children leaving us in Year Six and hopefully on their journey beyond primary school.




At St Bede’s we have planned the geography curriculum carefully to ensure progression through the year groups and to enable pupils to use and build on prior learning. Curriculum planning is enriched by staff members own knowledge, understanding, use of questioning and creativity. We change and adapt planning to meet the needs of our pupils, encourage enquiry based learning and engage the children in critical thinking. This enables the children to become decision makers, global citizens and provides the tools to succeed in life.  We believe that it is essential for children to gain a good balance of core knowledge (such as facts, vocabulary, locational knowledge) with a sense of place (where children use their senses, explore their emotions, values and opinions). Through this sequential planning, the skills and vocabulary also build year on year and through carefully considered local studies and fieldwork we ensure that the children have the opportunities to use their newly acquired skills first hand.

Pupils investigate a range of places, in Britain, Europe and the wider world, to help develop their knowledge and understanding of the Earth’s physical and human processes. We are equally committed to providing children with opportunities to investigate and make enquiries about their local area in Carlisle and the county of Cumbria so that they can develop a real sense of who they are, their heritage and what makes our local area unique and special.

Fieldwork is an essential part of developing geographical skills and we ensure that the children have opportunities to conduct fieldwork at school and using the fantastic surrounding environment of our location. All of these experiences transfer over when researching and finding out about other areas around the world that are not as easily accessible. We strive to use technology and different media, where possible, to bring the world into our classrooms in order for us to learn about global issues, different cultures and places further afield.

Teachers understand the core structure of the geography curriculum and how it is set out at St Bede’s School. They know what is taught when and can makes links to prior learning. We use Oddizzi curriculum mapping, schemes of work, resources and assessments to plot and monitor planning and progression throughout the school. Each year group is also provided with vocabulary lists and map work skills that progress through the year groups. This ensures curriculum coverage and that skills are built on year on year. Staff are actively encouraged to adapt planning based on the interests of the children, national and global events, opportunities for enquiry lead learning and the use of critical thinking. In addition staff develop and source resources, plan trips/visits and the use of fieldwork to support units where possible. Oddizzi provides the structure for the geography curriculum at St Bede’s School and that is then enhanced by the high quality teaching and planning of the teachers.

Geography is taught in half termly units. We ensure that the subject is taught discreetly so the children understand what the subject of geography is. Where possible, links are made with other curriculum areas but this does not impact on the geography focus of the unit being taught.  

We make links with parents by recording weekly work on Seesaw, sharing knowledge organisers both in class and at home and through updating curriculum information on the website. Through these methods parents are aware of the geography being taught including vocabulary and can further support their child’s learning at home.



Children make progress, are more knowledgeable about the world around us and are confident in talking about physical and human features of geography. Teachers adapt the curriculum to meet the needs of all children.

At the beginning of the year, each teacher will conduct a simple baseline assessment to gather information about prior learning. This will then enable the teacher to plug any gaps in learning before starting the new geography unit. Throughout the unit prior learning will be reinforced while introducing new skills, knowledge and vocabulary.

Key questioning and addressing misconceptions during lessons, quizzes and assessment of knowledge and skills takes place at the end of each unit to check the children’s understanding and provide next steps for future geographical units.  This information can be shared with parents and with their new teachers as they move through the year groups.



Cross curricular writing in Geography

Here are some photographs showing the Geography work we have been doing...