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Reading Girls' School

Reading Girls' School


‘Geography explains the past, illuminates the present and prepares us for the future.

What could be more important than that?’ Michael Palin 2007

Head of department/faculty: Mrs N Ockerby

Introduction to Course

A high-quality geography education should inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. Teaching should equip pupils with knowledge about diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes. As pupils progress, their growing knowledge about the world should help them to deepen their understanding of the interaction between physical and human processes, and of the formation and use of landscapes and environments. Geographical knowledge, understanding and skills provide the framework and approaches that explain how the Earth’s features at different scales are shaped, interconnected and change over time.

Studying Geography will allow your daughter to develop the following skills:

  • communication skills
  • graphical and cartographical skills
  • technological skills including ICT and GIS
  • interpersonal skills through debate and discussion
  • literacy and numeracy skills
  • problem-solving skills
  • entrepreneurial skills and awareness of career possibilities.

Subject content KS3

Geography is taught taking a thematic, spiral learning approach based on the continents of the world.

  • Students in year 7 are taught:
  • Map and fieldwork skills
  • China - which includes development, river management and earthquakes.
  • Europe -Tourism, population, fold mountains and migration.
  • Great Britain - Rivers, coasts and resource management.
  • In year 8 students study:
  • Pole to pole which includes energy, plate tectonic theory, volcanoes and glaciation.
  • India which includes climate, quality of life and settlements.
  • Development and world cities

Subject content KS4

Throughout the GCSE Geography course students have the opportunity to consider a variety of geographical issues and, in doing so, become knowledgeable and critical geographers. There is a strong emphasis on the understanding of physical processes in the environment, as well as the management and mismanagement of resources by people.  Students also have the opportunity during this course to develop their fieldwork skills.

The course is divided into three main themes:

Section 1:     Living with the physical environment

In this section study will focus on the challenge of natural hazards including volcanoes, earthquakes and tropical storms. Weather and climate change are also a focus, followed by physical landscapes of the UK including coasts and rivers. Finally, the living world is studied which includes ecosystems such as tropical rainforests and hot deserts or cold environments.

Section 2:   Challenges in the human environment

This section covers population, urban growth, the changing economic world and global development.  Resource management including the global distribution of food, water and energy and in particular detail the demand for food resources globally is also a focus.

Section 3:  Geographical applications and skills

This section involves undertaking two different fieldwork tasks that will be assessed in the final examinations at the end of Year 11.  Pre-released material is received 12 weeks prior to the examination which will be studied in lesson time.

Exam board KS4: AQA Geography 8035

Typical lesson activities

Students are taught using a range of literacy activities, modelling, card sorts, map skills and mathematical skills.

Contact details for any questions: