The Cockburn John Charles Geography Department aims to develop students who have enquiring minds and a sense of adventure. Our dynamic and purposeful teaching approach ensures that our students enjoy engaging lessons both inside and outside of the classroom. The department runs numerous field trips and residential visits each year. In the last school year these have included a visit from Zoolab where Y7 students were given a talk about plant and animal adaptations, GCSE fieldwork in Hornsea and Mappleton plus a second fieldtrip at the Energy Recycling and Recovery Centre in Leeds.

Cockburn John Charles’ geography curriculum aims to ensure that all students:

  • develop knowledge of the location of globally significant places including their defining physical and human characteristics.
  • understand the processes that give rise to key physical and human geographical features of the world, how these are interdependent and how they bring about spatial variation and change over time.

Cockburn John Charles’ geography curriculum aims to ensure all students have the skills needed to:

  • collect, analyse and communicate with a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork that deepen their understanding of geographical processes
  • interpret a range of sources of geographical information, including maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS)
  • communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length.

All these skills are required to succeed at GCSE level.

Key Stage 3

Year 7

What will my child learn about in Geography this year?
Ecosystems- In this topic students will study blistering hot deserts and torrential tropical rainforests. We will look at where they occur, their characteristics and how animals are adapted to survive in these biomes.

The Horn of Africa– Students study the variety of human and physical geography within the continent of Africa, developing an appreciation that Africa is a continent of contrasts. We will then focus in on the Horn of Africa to investigate its varied climate, people and places.

Rivers- Students will study rivers along their journey from source to mouth. We will discover what landforms occur along the journey and what geographical processes cause them to form.

Tectonics – Students study the causes, effects and responses to natural hazards.

UK settlements People and Places – Students study the physical and human geography of their home country.

Year 8

What will my child learn about in Geography this year?
Asia – Students study the physical and human geography of this rapidly changing continent and understand how the UK is interdependent with Asia.

Coasts – Students study coastal processes, their impact upon the land and how the UK coastline can be sustainably managed.

Global Fashion – Students will go on a journey of discovery to find out the origins of everyday items of clothing, from the cotton farmers to the workers who make our clothes.

Weather and climate – Students study what creates our day-to-day weather and how these phenomena can impact on different people and places. We may also have the opportunity to carry out a small piece of geographical fieldwork within the school grounds.

Population – Students will discover more about our ever growing population. We will discuss how things might change in the future and the variety of challenges this will bring.

Controversial Geography (decision making) – Students will be set a problem which needs to be solved.  They will need to work together to design the best possible solution and present their findings to the rest of the class.

What type of homework will be set in Year 7 and 8?
Homework is set in geography to meet one of three requirements.

  1. Consolidate understanding from the lesson. For example, answering further questions on a topic, creating mind maps or completing revision tasks for an assessment.
  2. Deepen understanding of the current topic. For example, through further research using the internet or newspapers.
  3. To introduce a new topic. For example, research tasks or watching documentary archive on the internet.

How will my child be assessed in Geography?
Students will be assessed through a range of assessment techniques; these will include, extended pieces of writing, shorter exam style questions, visual presentations and spoken presentations. By using a range of assessment techniques students develop a range of skills and they have the opportunity to be assessed in their preferred learning styles.

How can I support my child’s learning at home?
The best way to support your child’s geography at home is by ensuring they have a quiet area to complete their homework.

Further to this ensure your child watches a suitable new programme such as ‘Newsround’ and discuss current affairs with them.

When discussing places or viewing places on the TV, show your child where that place either in an Atlas or using a web based map. You could buy a world wall map for their bedroom.

If you are on journey encourage your child to find your location and route on a map, you could ask them to direct you. When on a journey talk your child through the route; which direction are you heading, how far is the journey, and which cities will you pass on the way.

If you are visiting a park, theme park or anywhere that has a map ask your child to direct your movements.

Encourage your child to use Google Earth and Geoguesser.

Key Stage 4

The GCSE Geography course (AQA 8035) is a varied and dynamic course in which students study a range of physical and human geography topics.   The qualification is tested in three exams which take place at the end of Year 11.

Paper 1: Living with the physical environment – Exam Monday 18th May 2020

  • The physical geography exam
  • Worth 35%
  • 1hr 30mins

Paper 2: Challenges in the human environment – Exam Wednesday 3rd June 2020

  • The human/economic geography exam
  • Worth 35%
  • 1hr 30mins

Paper 3: Geographical applications – Exam Thursday 11th June 2020

  • The skills exam – involving the issue evaluation and fieldwork
  • Worth 30%
  • 1hr 15mins

For 2019/2020, students in Year 9, students will study:

The Living World

UK Physical Landscapes (rivers and coasts)

Urban issues and challenges

In Year 10, students will study:

Urban issues and challenges

Natural hazards

The challenge of resource management

Compulsory fieldwork enquiries

In Year 11, students will study:

The changing economic world

Natural Hazards

Revision and issue evaluation

Please note, to support students revision guides are available from your child’s geography teacher to support revision at home.

What will my child learn in GCSE Geography?
UK physical landscapes (coasts and rivers) – Students will study the physical processes which shape our coastal and fluvial landscapes. In these topics students will discover how particular land forms are created and how they change over time. Students will also identify how humans interact with these environments through flood protection and environmental damage.

The challenge of resource management- Students will investigate how we manage our resources across the globe including food, water and energy. They will reflect on how efficient this management currently is and how it could be made sustainable for the future.

The living world- Students will discover the characteristics of different ecosystems from around the world. This includes studying the hot, humid climate of the tropical rainforest and the scorching heat of hot deserts. Students will learn how different plants and animals are adapted to live in these harsh areas.

The changing economic world- Students study how the world economy has changed in the recent past and how it may change in the future. We will delve into the inequalities that exist within the global economy and how these issues lead to uneven development. Students will also investigate how we can reduce this inequality through fair trade, debt relief and tourism.

The challenge of natural hazards- Students build upon their key stage three knowledge to develop a detailed understanding of tectonic theory. Students will study the impact and management of natural hazards in both rich and poor countries.

Issue Evaluation – Students study a range of information sources including: maps, newspaper articles, photographs, graphs and viewpoints all related to a particular geographical issue. Using the information they gather from these sources students will complete a decision making exercise where they make a decision and justify their decision with evidence from the sources.

Geographical enquiry- Students will carry out two different geographical enquiries during their time at Cockburn John Charles. Students will explore topics related to their studies and carry out fieldwork to answer their key questions. The current Year 10 are investigating longshore drift at Hornsea and tourism in Bridlington.

Geographical Skills – Throughout the course students will develop the ability to read and infer information from a range of maps. Students will also develop the ability to draw and interpret a range of graphs.

What type of homework will be set?
Homework is set in geography at GCSE generally aims to consolidate understanding from the lesson. For example, answering examination style questions on a topic, creating mind maps or completing revision tasks for an assessment.

How will my child be assessed in Geography?
Students will be set past GCSE examination questions. This enables them to develop their exam technique alongside their geographical knowledge.

Useful websites  – Then click the AQA tab at the top of the website. – Interactive activities to support revision. – GCSE past paper questions.

For further information please speak to your child’s Geography teacher.