Our Intent

At Rawmarsh Community School we aim to ensure our Geography curriculum is designed to sequence learning and embed the key skills that are required to develop curious students into competent Geographers.

Our curriculum empowers students to develop their interest around a wide range of interlinking themes that expose students to a wider world beyond that of the local community. Our 5-year curriculum builds on prior learning and ensures that we nurture student’s skills for learning so they develop over time.

Geography is central to curriculum and experiential learning and enrichment. We ensure all our students who study Geography in Year 7, 8 and 9, and those who study it throughout the 5-year course, see a world beyond the classroom, community and borough. Our intention is to develop a curriculum that helps students develop into well-rounded human beings ready and able for the challenges of the world beyond school.

How we intend to remove barriers

In Geography we remove barriers to learning and support students’ ability to access the curriculum through the development of literacy, numeracy, oracy skills and vocabulary acquisition. 

Misconceptions do not go unchallenged and the supportive environment within each and every lesson ensures that students develop their own literacy and vocabulary in a high challenge, low fear environment.


Students are given many opportunities to read widely and often with students directed to geographical studies as well as researching independently. Pupils take part in flipped learning opportunities where they read the information and teach each other information as well as being involved in carousel activities where pupils are required to go and find out the information themselves. 


Throughout each year of the curriculum numeracy, statistical and graphical skills are sequenced to become more complex over time to ensure students build on the fundamental aspects of each one and develop their confidence and aptitude.


in order to develop their oracy within a subject specific contex pupils are given opportunities to talk about their learning. Staff challenge use of geographical language and will direct pupils towards the correct terminology when appropriate. Pupils take part in flipped learning opportunities where they read the information and teach each other information as well as being involved in carousel activities where pupils are required to go and find out the information themselves. 


Students are introduced to key subject specific vocabulary and have regular opportunities to reinforce their understanding through low stakes testing. Key geographical vocabulary is highlighted to the pupils and pupils are guided as to use these in questions.

How we develop skills for learning

Students are given opportunities to develop their skills for learning and each and every lesson. Engaging starter activities help students to know more and remember more by challenging their ability to recall key the key concepts of prior learning. Our aspiring geographers are expected to demonstrate interpretation, analysis and evaluation across the curriculum within our decision making activities. Students are presented with a variety of information and challenged to use it to be critical, analytical and divergent in their thought process in order to reach a valid hypothesis or justified opinion.

The skills for learning process within the Geography curriculum both reinforces the key Geographical skills content and helps our students to know, remember and be able to do more at each stage of the curriculum. Skills are tested throughout the years and knowledge built on due to all the exams being at the end of Y11, so pupils are required to remember more as they go through the curriculum.

How we foster personal attributes

In Geography our curriculum intent embodies that of the school. We are committed to ensuring we do not only teach students the knowledge and skills that will help them pass examinations but we also provide them with the exposure to the wider world context in order to develop them as well rounded individuals. Our curriculum demands independence, resilience and responsibility in line with Rawmarsh Way.

Geography exposes students to different cultures, languages and experiences that broaden their horizons and demand they think of themselves as members of a local, national and global society. We aspire for all our students to become avid Geographers who demonstrate empathy, tolerance, understanding, aspiration and respect so they are prepared to be active citizens in the local community and beyond.

How we intend to enrich student experiences and broaden the horizons of students

Geography is a curriculum that must go beyond the classroom. To this end we broaden the horizons of all our students and enrich their experiences through a range of experiential and investigatory learning. All our students have exposure to learning beyond the traditional mainstream lesson and have opportunities to enrich their experiences. Our fieldwork opportunities, both practical and virtual through students into a world beyond the community in which they know.

Our Curriculum in Geography

Year 7

In Year 7, students learn about the many different interactions between people and places at different levels of development and in a variety of cultural contexts. They explore locational and place knowledge worldwide and tackle the complex nature of rural-urban interactions in areas such as Kenya, Haiti and the UK as a whole alongside  our own local setting. Students have opportunities to investigate the physical and human Geography around tectonic hazards. Within our water unit of work students are exposed to the complex nature of human and physical interactions and how these lead to consequences such as flooding, drought, water poverty and how these consequences are managed. 

Students develop key Geographical skills that will ensure they are ready for their next stage of learning such as an introduction to cartography including scale, grid reference and atlas skills. In addition, they are introduced to key numerical and statistical skills that are fundamental to the well rounded Geographer. Throughout the year students are exposed to skills of greater complexity and difficulty in order to sequence skills development. 

We aim to bring fieldwork in to the curriculum. The students will have the opportunity to study rural and urban interactions when they focus on the sustainability of the nearby village of Wentworth.

Year 8

In Year 8, students learn about the diverse nature of our physical world through our rivers and coasts topic where they continue to question the influence we have on nature. The aim is to bring this topic to life by studying river  processes at Langsett. The location of Langsett will also allow students to revisit the Leisure and Tourism topic from Year 7. They are introduced to the world’s natural and human processes and how they intertwine with one another in a multitude of ways. Our weather hazards unit allows students to explore the characteristics, impacts and harsh realities of anticyclones and depressions. It builds on the tectonic hazards topic covered in Year 7.

Students are challenged to investigate how place and development have a crucial role in the management of these weather hazards. Students investigate other physical processes such as glaciation and look at the environmental issues that surround cold deserts. Students go on to explore environmental and social issues that focus on fashion, trade, migration and global cities. Within each topic, students are exposed to the changing nature of social decision making at different levels of scale and how the choices people, governments and global institutions make affect the world in which we live.  

Students are introduced to more complex cartographic skills such as river cross-sections, relief and the ability to interpret photographic evidence. Numeracy development starts to focus on graphical skills and how data can be interpreted to reach valid conclusions including complex data such as population pyramids. There is greater expectation that students construct a variety of data presentations and are challenged to use this, in addition to their cartographic development, to make informed geographical decisions.

Year 9

In year 9, students learn about how people interact with the physical environment.  Students start by exploring environmental hazards. This builds on the tectonic hazards and the weather hazards studied in Year 7 and Year 8. Environmental hazards then leads into the ecosystems topic where students are able to look at the interactions between the environment and people. They will be able to recognise the challenges faced by these ecosystems and the management strategies that are being implemented to address these challenges. Linked to both Environmental Hazards and Ecosystems is the issue of desertification. Students will study this issue alongside hot desert environments, which also builds upon the work studied in Year 8 on cold desert environments.

Year 9 will see a greater emphasis on using a wide range of geographical sources to investigate specific geographical issues. This will help the students make the transition into GCSE where in Year 11  students will need to apply their knowledge and understanding using secondary resources when investigating issue(s).

Year 9 fieldwork will reflect the experiences of the human fieldwork and the physical fieldwork that the students participate in during Year 10 and Year 11. The Y9 fieldwork will see students making more independent decisions when approaching the enquiry process. The students will be able to suggest hypotheses, collect primary data using appropriate techniques, understand how to present this data and be able to analyse the data to help prove or disprove their original hypothesis.

Year 10

Students follow the AQA GCSE specification.  

In Year 10 the students focus on physical geography by following the unit of work ‘Living with the physical environment’. They build upon the topics covered in Key Stage 3 when studying Section A –  The Challenge of Natural Hazards. This unit focuses on tectonic hazards (Year 7), Weather Hazards (Year 8) and Climate change (Year 9).

Section B – The Living World gives the students the opportunity to study tropical rainforests and hot deserts in a more indepth level than in Year 9.

Section C – Physical Landscapes in the UK gives the students an overview of the range and diverse landscapes that exist within the UK. The students build on their knowledge and understanding of coastal landscapes and river landscapes (Year 8). This section gives the students the opportunity to apply their geographical theory in fieldwork situations. The students will complete physical fieldwork at Burbage Brook, applying the theory of river processes to a real life situation.

Year 11

In Year 11 students will focus on human geography by following the unit of work ‘Challenges in the Human Environment’. They build on the topics covered in Key Stage 3 when studying Section A – Urban Issues and Challenges. The students will investigate Rio de Janeiro as a case study of a major city in an LIC/NEE, focusing on the causes of growth and how this urban growth has created opportunities and challenges. (Year 7) A case study of Sheffield will also be used as an example of a major city in the UK, focusing on urban change and how this change has created opportunities and challenges. This topic will also include a case study of an urban regeneration project, This will be investigated through the human fieldwork and give the students the opportunity to apply the theory to an urban regeneration project in Sheffield City Centre.

(Year 7) Section B – The Changing Economy, will look at global variations in economic development and quality of life. It will focus on how development can be measured. The causes of uneven development and strategies for reducing the development gap. (Year 7 and Year 8). Incorporated into this topic will be a case study of an LIC/NEE to illustrate the factors associated with the development of this country, including the role of TNCs and different types of aid. The students will have the opportunity to study the economic change that is currently taking place within the UK. They will look at de-industrialisation and the move to a post-industrial economy and how modern industrial development can be more environmentally sustainable.

(Year 9) Section C – The Challenge of Resource Management will allow the students to have an overview of how food, water and energy are fundamental to human development. (Year 7 and Year 9). They will then study food in more depth, focusing on how demand for food is increasing and how this can lead to conflict. Strategies for increasing food supply will be investigated.

SMSC (Spiritual, Moral, Social, and Cultural)

A significant part of the Geography curriculum is learning about a variety of different cultures and societies around the world. Students are taught about how indigenous peoples view their environment, and how the international community responds to natural disasters, instances of famine, drought and other humanitarian disasters (including refugee and migration issues). Also, how they are dealt with through discussion and debate.

Students also learn about social and economic inequality and how the imbalance of wealth can be addressed, including initiatives such as Fair Trade.

Recent Department News

Geography Staff

Mrs H Mayfield
Head of Humanities

Mr M Turton
Associate Headteacher

Mrs E Sheedy
Teacher of Subjects: Geography

Miss C Barker
Teacher of Subjects: Geography

Mr C Spruce
Teacher of Subjects: Geography

Exam Board

Please click the image below for exam board information.

Y9 Options Pathway

Please click the links below to view the options pathways and options form.

Reminder: Y6 Transition Evening - Wednesday 11th March - 5pm