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Curriculum Rationale: Geography

Our geography curriculum aims to create powerful geographical knowledge that transcends the everyday experiences of our pupils.  We want our pupils to leave King’s Leadership Academy Hawthorne’s with the knowledge, skills and understanding to explain how the world works in a uniquely geographical way.  Pupils will be able to explain the physical and human processes operating at different scales, including how they have shaped both societies and environments, and how they will do so in the future. We want our pupils to ‘think like a geographer’; to be curious and critical, consider alternative futures, apply knowledge and develop synoptic links. We want our pupils to ‘act like a geographer’ through the development of cartographic, graphical and enquiry skills, amongst others. Ultimately, we want our pupils to become the best geographers they can be. 

Our curriculum at King’s Leadership Academy Hawthornes focuses on ‘powerful geography’ as outlined by Mark Enser (2021). The curriculum is underpinned by the following key concepts: place, space and scale, interdependence, landscapes and processes, and change. 

We aim to ensure that all our pupils who are disadvantaged or have any special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) have access to a carefully planned curriculum. Our curriculum aims to provide pupils with SEND with explicit systematic teaching and rehearsal of knowledge. We also ensure that these pupils have the time they need to study important subject content in geography.

Curriculum Intent: Geography

The King’s Leadership Academy Hawthornes geography curriculum has been developed to ensure that all pupils:

  • develop contextual knowledge of the location of globally significant places, including their defining physical and human characteristics and how these provide a geographical context for understanding the actions of processes 

  • 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 

  • are competent in the geographical 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


Year 7 Long Term PlanYear 8 Long Term PlanYear 9 Long Term PlanYear 10 Long Term PlanYear 11 Long Term Plan


For each curriculum overview, additional documentation is available upon request. This documentation outlines more precisely the exact subject knowledge that your child must know and remember. These documents also include the types of teaching activities that subject staff have chosen to help your son/daughter learn the curriculum here at King’s Leadership Academy Hawthornes.


In order to check how well our pupils are learning the curriculum, teachers use a full range of assessment techniques. These include diagnostic questions to reveal your child’s geographical preconceptions and common misunderstandings, questioning and end of topic/learning cycle assessments.