Iver Heath

Nurturing happy, healthy, confident learners in a safe, rich learning environment

  • 'Thank you for all the guidance and support you have given our daughter. You have really instilled a lot of confidence in her!'
  • 'Words cannot express how grateful my husband and I are to all the staff for the hours of dedication and support that you have given our son throughout his time at the school!' (Parent)
  • 'Our daughter thoroughly enjoyed her experiences during her Forest School sessions and we enjoyed listening to her excited stories afterwards!'
  • 'Thank you for all your hard work, care and never ending support'.
  • 'Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all' Aristotle
  • 'It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression' Albert Einstein
  • 'Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire' WB Yeats
  • 'Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world' Nelson Mandela

Geography

Geography at Iver Heath infant School and Nursery

 Introduction

 Article 28: Every child has the right to an education

Article 29: Education must develop every child’s personality, talents and abilities to the full. It must encourage the child’s respect for human rights, as well as respect for their parents, their own and other cultures, and the environment.

 The Geography teaching at Iver Heath infant School and nursery is about developing an understanding of our world through experience, investigation and learning from secondary sources. Geography helps children to gain a greater understanding of the ways of life and cultures of people in their own environment and in other places. This will help to enable children to take responsibility for their role in society and to develop a caring attitude towards others, animals and plants in our environment.

Through their work in Geography, children learn about their local area, and they compare their life in this area with that in other regions in the United Kingdom and in the rest of the world. They learn how to draw and interpret maps, and they develop the skills of research, investigation, analysis and problem-solving. Geography teaching also motivates children to find out about the physical world, and enables them to recognise the importance of sustainable development for the future of mankind.

 Intent

 Our objectives in the teaching of geography are:

  • to enable children to gain knowledge and understanding of our local environment;
  • to enable children to begin to gain knowledge and understanding of other places in the world;
  • to increase children's knowledge of other cultures and, in so doing, teach a respect and understanding of what it means to be a positive citizen in a multi-cultural country;
  • to teach children to learn and use geographical vocabulary that is appropriate to their age and experiences;
  • to teach children to utilise geographic resources e.g. globes, maps, reference books and the internet;
  • to develop in children the ability to use age appropriate geographical skills such as drawing and interpreting maps;
  • to develop in children a growing awareness of geographical issues both locally and around the world;
  • to stimulate children’s interest in and curiosity of the world around them;
  • create and foster a sense of wonder about the world in which we live;
  • to develop in children a variety of other skills, including those of enquiry, problem-solving, computing and investigation;

Implementation

Early Years

As part of the EYFS curriculum the children experience the following:

  • opportunities to learn in the natural environment and to develop a sensitivity for the natural environment;
  • a developing understanding of the seasons and some of the impacts that they bring;
  • an awareness and a developing understanding of other environments around the world and the differences they would bring;
  • a growing understanding of other people’s customs and traditions which may be different from their own; 

Our curriculum provides for all these learning opportunities and enhances them further via the following activities:

Nursery

  • Play experiences using small world equipment on large scale play mats and in sand etc;
  • Play experiences on playground maps with road layouts etc;
  • Walks around the school environment;
  • Maps of both real and imaginary places available within the setting for exploration and discussion;
  • Regular discussions on the weather and weather changes
  • A topic on Homes which initially draws on the children’s own experiences of home and then also looks at different types of homes in and around our locality;
  • A visit to Iver Heath library during which road safety is also taught including naming key features such as road, pavement, zebra crossing, pathway;
  • Storytelling which involves stories from and about various places around the world;
  • Discussions led from children’s own life experiences such as holidays and visits to family who live in other parts of the UK or world;
  • During the whole school ‘World Week the children are introduced to experiences, stories and activities from another country within the UK
  • The use of remote control devices gives the children experience of using positional language.

Reception

  • Play experiences using small world equipment on large scale play mats and in sand etc;
  • Play experiences on playground maps with road layouts etc;
  • Walks around the school environment;
  • Maps of both real and imaginary places available within the setting for exploration and discussion;
  • Aerial view photographs and maps of the local environment within the classroom;
  • Regular discussions on the weather and changes in the weather highlighting comparisons with different times of the year and different places;
  • All children take part in Forest School once a week foe half of each term. This supports their understanding of weather, seasons, nature and their local environment;
  • The use of our second Forest School site at the junior school also enables learning of road safety and comparisons of two local areas;
  • Stories from around the world allow children to gain an awareness of different places in the world and to begin to understand some of the similarities and differences between these places and Iver Heath;
  • Discussion from children’s own experiences of holidays and visits to family who live elsewhere provide opportunities to develop all the children’s awareness of our world and all it has to offer;
  • A seasonal walk each term provides further understanding of the seasons and provides valuable opportunities to discuss road safety;
  • A visit to Iver Heath library provides learning in the locality and key features of the village e.g. library, junior school, footpath, car park;
  • The topic of Under The Sea provides opportunities to discuss different places in the world and to begin to use map making skills ;
  • The trip into London to visit the Aquarium provides opportunities to see various famous London landmarks;
  • During World Week the two Reception classes chose a country to study and all the children carry out activities and research about that country;
  • Also during World Week in mixed age groups all the children visit the other five countries being studied across the school.

 Key Stage 1

Curriculum

Our children are taught the requirements of the national curriculum and this is enhanced further via the activities listed below. This curriculum is taught through a variety of methods including:

  • Discussion about issues and topics;
  • Debate and the expression of views and attitudes;
  • Developing a questioning approach that can lead to independent discovery.
  • Activities to promote the use and understanding of key geographical vocabulary.
  • Simple fieldwork and investigations within the school grounds and local area, using equipment such as compasses, maps, and thermometers;
  • Handling and using maps, aerial photos, globes, pictures and artefacts of people’s lives and work in order to develop a ‘hands on’ and investigative understanding of the world;
  • Reading and writing about people’s feelings and views on where they live, work they do, and lives they lead;
  • Talking to people in order to understand their views, attitudes and ideas about the world.
  • In Year One: 
  • Mapping skills starting with mapping the tables and then moving on to the classroom and playground;
  • Drawing line maps of a walk to school;
  • Drawing maps of stories which involve a journey e.g. The Runaway Chapatti;
  • Writing your own address and posting a letter to your home;
  • Walks around school and local environment identifying key features;
  • Studying the weather regularly in order to have a clearer understanding of what to expect of the weather during each season;
  • Exploring simple weather patterns within the UK and creating own weather forecasts;
  • Sorting simple features of a town and the countryside and so learning language such as: office, shop, supermarket, field, river, forest, farm, post office
  • The use of positional language such as left, right, forwards and backwards as part of coding beebots;
  • Identification of the countries of the United Kingdom and their capitals;
  • Identification of the seas/oceans surrounding the United Kingdom
  • Each Year One class researches a country as part of our school World Week and all the children visit the other five countries being studied during the week in mixed age groups;
  • Use of simple atlases and maps within the classroom environment;

 In Year Two

  • Investigation of the local environment including the naming of key features;
  • Mapping skills starting with the classroom, the school site and then moving on to the village of Iver Heath;
  • Revisit the identification of the countries of the United Kingdom and their capital cities;
  • Revisit the identification of the seas/oceans surrounding the United Kingdom;
  • Identification of the UK on a world map and/or globe;
  • Revisit simple weather patterns and introduce seasonal temperatures;
  • Research of a different environment in a non-European country;
  • Comparisons made between Iver Heath and the non-European locality;
  • Identification of the continents and the oceans of the world
  • Identification and exploration of the compass points of north, south, east and west;
  • Use of simple atlases and maps within the classroom environment;
  • Each Year Two class researches a country as part of our school World Week and all the children visit the other five countries being studied during the week in mixed age groups;
  • Resources 

All classes:

  • a variety of maps both imaginary and real;
  • access to digital maps eg google map and digimap.
  • Early Years classes
  • Small world equipment
  • Tuff spots
  • Beebots
  • Sand pits
  • Bikes etcKey Stage One classes
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  • Map of the UK
  • Map of the world
  • GlobeAvailable in the resource cupboard:
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  • Fieldwork equipment e.g. compasses, thermometers and rain gauges;
  • Further information and resources on a variety of countries and geographical themes.

Equal Opportunities

We provide equity of opportunity throughout our curriculum to ensure that all pupils are able to both contribute to and develop from the learning experiences Iver Heath Infant School and nursery offers.

Inclusion and Diversity

In whole class teaching differentiation for all pupils occurs through:

  • discussion;
  • well-focused and challenging questioning;
  • praise of individual contributions;
  • high expectations encouraging pupils to elaborate, suggest, make observations, reflect and speculate;
  • thinking time.

In individual, paired or group work differentiation will take place by resources, variety of tasks, response and support.

More able children are identified by the class teacher and their learning is enhanced through targeted questioning and/or extending written output.

Children with special educational needs (SEN) and English as an additional language (EAL) are supported using a variety of support materials suggested by class teachers, SENCO, The Specialist Teaching Service and other outside agencies. For children with physical disabilities, we endeavour to secure appropriate apparatus in order for them to access the curriculum and we consult with relevant outside agencies.

We ensure that we show children positive images of the gender groups in society. We celebrate the contribution that other ethnic groups and cultures make across the curriculum.

We identify those children for whom the school receives pupil premium funds and we ensure that support is given to these children as appropriate. The school may on occasion also offer financial support to these children, for example in the form of a payment for a trip.

 Homework

Whilst the school believes that our young children work hard during the day and therefore need some relaxation time after school, we are always interested in research and information gathering that our children are often keen to report on to their classmates.

When children have time in another country they are encouraged to report back on their experiences and to discuss similarities and differences.

Health and Safety

All staff ensure that Health and Safety regulations are adhered to when using equipment such as interactive whiteboards and CD players etc.

 Impact

  • Teachers assess pupils’ progress both formally and informally.
  • In Early Years each child is assessed in relation to criteria given by Development Matters statements from the Foundation Stage Curriculum and the Foundation Stage Profile. This and our own Creative Curriculum form the basis for the individual year group Geography Learning Ladders.
  • We use our Geography Learning Ladders in each year group to assess what pupils have achieved and from this plan what they need to revisit.
  • Our Marking Policy reflects the importance we place on immediate assessment and feedback. The Geography Learning Ladders can be seen on the school website at www.iverheathing.org.uk.
  • Monitoring and evaluation
  • Reporting to Parents
  • We have an open-door policy to discuss strengths and strategies to support learning in all areas of the curriculum.
  • The Governing Body  
  • The Governors monitor the teaching and learning of geography throughout the school via the governor responsible for the curriculum who reports to the Pupil Progress and Curriculum Committee.
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  • We hold two parents’ consultation evenings during the year, one in the Autumn term and the other in the Spring term. Written reports are given to parents at the end of the Summer term and parents have the opportunity to discuss these with the class teacher if they choose.
  • The monitoring of the teaching and learning in geography is carried out by the humanities team and the senior leadership team. This can be done via learning walks, book looks, data information and discussion with both children and teachers.
  • Above all, teaching and learning Geography should provide children with challenge and enjoyment. It should give them a love of the world, a desire to see the beauty of the world and a real thirst for knowledge and understanding about the human condition and their place in it.
  • October 2019
  •  This policy will be reviewed every three years or earlier if appropriate