Key Stage 3 Geography
Key stage 3 Geography begins with a focus on Geographical skills and knowledge. This includes developing more sophisticated use of maps and digital systems as well as, consolidating knowledge of the UK, the world and its different continents, countries, oceans and landscapes. Later in Year 7, our classes focus on the Geography of Africa where our students start to explore some of the ideas related to trying to develop areas experiencing poverty. In the summer, the focus is on practical research skills and fieldwork, including a decision making exercise based on work in our local Phear Park.
In Year 8, Geography is taught for two lessons a week which allows for topics to be studied in greater depth. This also includes themes from both Physical and Human Geography. We study the causes and consequences (both good and bad) of an increasingly globalised world, investigate the natural and human processes affecting our rivers and coastlines and have an in depth study of tropical rainforests. In the summer, the focus is on Plate Tectonics and earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunamis. This includes a research project with a practical dimension, as many of our students choose to present their research as a model, based on one particular volcano which is designed to help other people to understand the details of that particular example.
In Year 9, whilst we return to one lesson per week, the aim is to continue the depth of study developed in Year 8. The year is divided into two halves. The first combines both Human and Physical Geography as we consider how environments around the world have been altered by human activity and how any problems caused may best be solved. This includes studies on climate change, investigations into changing polar lands, mountains, deserts and oceans. With the 'BBC Blue Planet' series and the increasing awareness of the problem of plastic in the oceans, this course has gained a greater relevance than ever. In the second half of year 9, the focus is on global population change – areas where the population has grown, where it has declined, the growth of cities and the development of slums, as well as different strategies around the world to try to manage population change and migration.
Throughout Key Stage 3, our students are provided with a range of opportunities to access different styles of learning and in their assessments they should expect a variety of written tests, oral presentations, extended written tasks and research challenges. In all cases, we really do try to encourage our students to follow the news and current affairs as it really helps them to develop as a Geographer.