‘The Humanities’ – Geography and History

Geography

– ‘The study of geography is more than just memorising places on a map.  It’s about understanding the complexity of our world.’  Barack Obama

Intent

At Boston Pioneers Academy we believe that inside each of our learners is an innate sense of curiosity and exploration that must not be allowed to lie dormant.  Geography is, by its very nature, an investigative subject and through our Geography curriculum we intend to provide our learners with opportunities to:

  • Find out about diverse locations and communities.
  • Learn about natural and man-made environments
  • Understand the Earth’s key physical and human processes
  • Know where places are, what they are like, and how they are linked to other places
  • Ask questions about the world around them
  • Undertake geographical enquires through fieldwork
  • Draw conclusions from their enquiries and explain their findings
  • Share well-balanced opinions, which demonstrate good knowledge and understanding about current issues in society and the environment
  • Develop a broad range of geographical vocabulary and be able to apply this appropriately in different contexts

Over time, our learners will gain a growing knowledge about the world and understand more deeply the interaction between physical and human processes, and the formation and use of landscapes and environments.  They will learn how to communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length.

However, above all else, the over-arching aim for our Geography Curriculum is to inspire within our learners a curiosity about, and fascination with, the world and its people which will remain with them for the rest of their lives.

Implementation of Geography in EYFS

Learners develop a range of geographical-related knowledge and skills during their time in EYFS, although Geography is not taught directly as an explicit subject. Rather, geography is encompassed in the EYFS through the Prime area of learning: ‘Understanding of the World’, which incorporates children’s understanding of ‘People and Communities’ and ‘the Natural World’. The focus in the EYFS is on learners developing their knowledge of other people, the places where they live and different aspects of the environment and beginning to note similarities and differences between them.

Utilising our indoor and outdoor environments, our learners are offered a variety of experiences that help them to reflect on their own life and those of others around the world. For example, they are able to observe changes in the weather and seasons. We also promote recycling and respect for living things to encourage our learners to think about how we can look after our planet and ourselves.

Implementation of Geography in Year 1 – Year 6

At Boston Pioneers Academy our Geography Curriculum is informed by and aligned with the National Curriculum (2014). We teach geography as a discrete subject using an enquiry-based approach.  However, we make links to other subjects where appropriate to do so.  For example,  Geography is highly interlinked with History and Science, and it is important for us to build upon those links in order to support our learners in deepening their knowledge of the world around them.  Along with History and Science, I.T. also plays an important role in our Geography curriculum, with Digimaps (an online mapping tool) being used across both Key Stages to support children in developing their map skills.  

By adopting an enquiry-based approach, our learners will learn to collect, interpret and present data using geographical methodologies.  They will also learn to follow the fieldwork process of question, observe, measure, record and present.

The curriculum content has been arranged in such a way as to ensure that it is most appropriate for the developmental age of our learners. With this in mind, our youngest learners learn about their immediate surroundings and as the children’s capacity to take on wider knowledge develops, they study places further afield and in greater depth.

The main components of study at KS1 include:​ 

  • Developing learners’ core knowledge about the world (continents & oceans), the United Kingdom (countries) and their locality (Boston)  
  • Developing knowledge of similarities and differences in the human and physical geography of a small area of the United Kingdom (Skegness) and of a small area in a contrasting non-European country (Boston, USA). 
  • Identifying seasonal and daily weather patterns in the United Kingdom and the location of hot and cold areas of the world in relation to the Equator and the North and South Poles. 
  • Developing learners’ core geographical vocabulary – including words relating to human and physical geography.​ 
  • Developing learners’ field work skills, including making first-hand observations, measuring and recording to enhance their knowledge.​ 
  • Developing learners’ core geographical skills including using maps, atlases and globes; using simple compass directions; Using aerial photographs to identify landmarks and basic human and physical features; plus making simple maps and using/ constructing basic symbols in a key.​

 

The main components of KS2 study include:​ 

  • Extending their knowledge of place, space and scale by studying a range of other countries, cities and environmental regions, their topographical features and land-use patterns.​ 
  • Developing a deeper understanding of physical geography and its associated vocabulary, including: climate zones, biomes and vegetation belts, rivers, mountains, volcanoes, earthquakes and the water cycle.​ 
  • Developing a deeper understanding of human geography and its associated vocabulary, including: types of settlement and land use, economic activity including trade links, and the distribution of natural resources including energy, food, minerals and water.​ 
  • Further developing learners’ field work and enquiry skills so that they are increasingly able to develop their own questions and carry out investigations.​ 

You can view our long term plan for Geography here:

Below are what our Curriculum Drivers look like in Geography:​

You can find out more about how our Geography curriculum supports the Spiritual, Moral, Social and Emotional development of our learners below:

Geography Long Term Plan

Our Knowledge and Skills progression ladder for Geography, our medium-term plans and our linked knowledge organisers are available by contacting the Academy’s Geography lead: kimberley.bolland@bostonpioneersacademy.net

History

“We are not makers of history. We are made by history.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

Intent

At Boston Pioneers Academy we aim to create within our learners a keen interest in the past, which arouses both their curiosity and motivation to learn. This subject is particularly important to us due to the rich history in the immediate locality of the academy.

Through our history teaching, we aim for our learners to understand the complexity of people’s lives; the process of change; the diversity of societies and the relationships between different groups; as well as their own identity and the challenges of their generation.  Over the course of their time with us, our learners will develop a broad range of knowledge about events and people from the past, their impact on today’s society, and will begin to understand the connections between local, regional, national and international history.

Implementation of History in EYFS

Although History is not taught as an explicit subject in EYFS,  History is encompassed in the EYFS through the Prime Area of ‘Understanding of the World’, which incorporates ‘Learning about People’, ‘Cultures and Communities’ and ‘Past and Present’. 

The understanding of chronology starts in EYFS with our learners being introduced to the concepts of time and change starting with developing their understanding of the terms: today, yesterday, tomorrow and then looking at how they themselves have changed since birth. Our learners will talk about past and present events in their own lives and in the lives of their family members.

Through our cross-curricular units of work, we aim for our learners to be able to achieve the ELG for ‘Past and Present’ by the end of EYFS, demonstrating their ability to:

Understanding the World

 

 

Past & Present 

Talk about the lives of people around them and their roles in society.  
Know some similarities and differences between things in the past and now, drawing on their experiences and what has been read in class.  
Understand the past through settings, characters and events encountered in books read in class and storytelling. 

Implementation of History Year 1 – Year 6​

At Boston Pioneers Academy our History Curriculum is informed by and aligned with the National Curriculum (2014).  We teach history through an enquiry-based approach as a discrete subject, yet make links to other subjects where appropriate to do so, for example Geography when studying invasions, etc. Our English teaching is also often linked to the history learning in order that our learners can develop a deeper understanding by applying and recalling their historical knowledge in a different context.

KS1 History

Key components which will be covered in KS1 are:

  • Developing learners’ knowledge and understanding of chronology
  • Developing learners’ knowledge, skills and understanding of similarities and differences between ways of life in different periods in history
  • Developing learners’ knowledge of historical vocabulary, including common words and phrases relating to the passing of time
  • Developing learners’ knowledge in relation to how we find out about the past in a variety of ways
  • Developing learners’ knowledge of changes within living memory as well as events beyond living memory that are significant nationally or globally, including the Battle of Hastings 1066.
  • Developing learners’ knowledge of a diverse range of significant individuals from the past who have contributed to national and international achievements. These include Mary Anning, The Wright Brothers, Amelia Earhart, Christopher Columbus & Matthew Flinders.

KS2 History

In KS2, we have selected specific historical periods to reflect the needs of Pioneers’ Learners & the rich historical resources in the area:

  • We study the Bronze Age as Flag Fen, (the only place in the UK where original Bronze Age remains can be seen in situ) is within close proximity of the Academy and Lincolnshire is a predominantly agricultural area and so the development of early-farming will assist our learners in understanding the shaping of their locality.
  • We study the Romans as in Roman times, Lincoln was a Roman city equal in importance and the city played a strategic role in the Roman conquest of Britain.​​
  • We teach two post 1066 units of history, one being of particular significance for the local area: The Battle of Britain (Woodhall Spa being the home of the Dam Busters and Lincolnshire playing a vital role in WW2 / aviation history).  Our second unit: The Victorians, is a comparative study of changes to education in the UK over time. Many of the school buildings that exist in Lincolnshire today were built during this time, providing a tangible link to this period.  This includes our own former premises.
  • The Egyptians have been selected for the study of the achievements of the earliest civilisations, not only because our learners are particularly fascinated and interested in this period of history; yet also as it has direct links with our locality, with the Egyptians being great agriculturalists.
  • The non-European society we have selected for study is the Mayan civilisation, also due to the strong links the Mayan civilisation had with farming and also as it complements the teaching of our MFL, which is Spanish.
In addition to our core history teaching, we undertake a ‘Heritage Week’ each year which has a focus on local history, the focus of this being sites of Historical interest in Boston, which was a significant port in the Medieval Period and in 1369 held the wool staple.

You can view our long term plan for History here:

Below are what our Curriculum Drivers look like in History:

You can find out more about how our History curriculum supports the Spiritual, Moral, Social and Emotional development of our learners below:

History Long Term Plan

Our Knowledge and Skills progression ladder for History, our medium-term plans and our linked knowledge organisers are available by contacting the Academy’s History lead: nicole.cannon@bostonpioneersacademy.net