Curriculum Intent

The Geography curriculum has been designed to build students knowledge, confidence and experience in understanding the challenges facing the planet in the 21st century. Throughout all key stages, students investigate both human and physical topic areas and the relationships between the two disciplines. We aim to immerse our students in the multicultural and diverse world that we see around us and enable them to be compassionate global citizens and to better understand the challenges that may face them in their future careers.

Students learn key concepts in their Foundation years, studying topics such as Sustainability, Climate Change and Development. This is underpinned with thematic units that apply those key ideas to regions around the globe. The Year 9 Keystone curriculum is based around developing students’ geography and critical thinking skills through the study of more complex concepts, in preparation for GCSE and A Level.

Geographical skills are embedded within units of work throughout all key stages. Students develop their cartographic, graphical, ICT and GIS skills. Fieldwork enquiries enable students to apply their skills, knowledge and understanding within both human and physical Geography. Students undertake fieldwork in the local Maidstone area, investigate river processes and urban development and A Level students take part in 4 fieldwork days in London, Dungeness, Margate and Maidstone, investigating coastal processes, globalisation and regeneration.


The Geography curriculum encourages students to make connections with the wider school curriculum eg the study of physical processes in Science, creativity and critical analysis in English and History and the quantitative skills of Mathematics.

Foundation Years: Years 7 and 8

Year 7

  • Geography Skills – Map Skills, Geographic Information Systems, Fieldwork Skills
  • Geography of the UK – Understanding the Geography of Kent and the UK
  • Weather and Climate – “How does climate differ around the globe?”
  • Energy of the UK – Understanding the energy resources of the UK and investigating the question “Will the UKs energy mix ever be 100% sustainable?”
  • Russia – “Is the Geography of Russia a blessing or a curse?”

Year 8

  • Coastal Processes – “What happens when the land meets the sea?”
  • Globalisation – “How is the world shrinking?”
  • Glaciers – “How does Ice Change the world?”
  • Global Development - “What are the key factors that cause a global development gap?
  • Water – "What affects global water availability and how might this change in the future?”
  • Africa – “What challenges and opportunities does Africa face?”

Keystone Year: Year 9

  • Tectonic Processes - Understanding the impacts of tectonics processes on the human and natural environment
  • Population and Migration - What are the causes and impacts of rapid population growth?
  • Middle East - What role will the Middle East play in the future world?


GCSE: Years 10 and 11

Exam Board: Pearson Edexcel

Year 10

Students study topics from the three units: The Physical Environment; The Human Environment and Geographical Investigations:

  • The changing landscapes of the UK including coastal landscapes and processes and river landscapes and processes – students investigate the physical geography of the UK including river and coastal landforms.
  • An investigation of the downstream changes on the River Tillingbourne – students attend a field trip to collect data from the River Tillingbourne and produce an individual report.
  • Changing Cities – students study the characteristics of two contrasting cities; Birmingham and São Paulo.
  • Resource Management – students investigate the different types of resources including an in-depth study of energy resources.
  • Weather hazards and climate change – students investigate the UK’s weather, changes in climate over time, tropical storms and drought.

Year 11

Students study topics from the three units: The Physical Environment; The Human Environment and Geographical Investigations:

  • Ecosystems, biodiversity and management – students investigate the characteristics of two contrasting ecosystems, deciduous woodlands and tropical rainforests.
  • Global development – students look at the reasons for the contrasting levels of development globally and undertake an in-depth investigation of India.
  • An investigation into the changes to central/inner urban area of Maidstone. Students attend a fieldtrip to collect data from Maidstone and produce an individual report.
  • UK challenges – students investigate the main challenges facing the UK including climate change, population growth and increasing pressures on the natural environment.

Geographical skills are also an important component of the GCSE and these will be incorporated into lesson.  By the end of the GCSE students are able to analyse, draw and interpret: photographs, map extracts, sketch map, diagrams, graphs, tables of data, satellite images and use GIS.

A Level: Years 12 and 13

Exam Board: Pearson Edexcel

Year 12

Area of study 1: Dynamic Landscapes

  • Tectonic Processes and Hazards – students study the reasons why some locations are more at risk than others from tectonic hazards, examples of recent hazard events and how tectonic hazards can be managed.
  • Landscape Systems, Processes and Change – students study the reasons why coastal landscapes differ, how coastal erosion and sea level rise alter coastlines and how they can be managed.

Area of study 2: Dynamic Places

  • Globalisation – students investigate the causes and impacts of globalisation as well as the studying the consequences of globalisation for global development.
  • Regenerating Places – students investigate the reasons why places vary in their characteristics and evaluate the success of regeneration strategies in both rural and urban areas.

Year 13

Area of study 3: Physical Systems and Sustainability

  • The Water Cycle and Water Insecurity – students investigate the hydrological cycle, it’s influence on the human and physical environment, and why water insecurity is a global issue.
  • The Carbon Cycle and Energy Security – students investigate the carbon cycle and its influence on the physical and human environment.

Area of study 4: Human Systems and Geopolitics

  • Superpowers – students investigate how superpower countries have changed over time and the impact they have on the human and physical environment.
  • Migration, Identity and Sovereignty – students investigate the impacts of globalisation on international migration, how nation states are evolving in a globalised world, the impacts of global organisations in managing global issues and the threats to national sovereignty.

Students will attend four on-day field trips and undertake an individual piece of coursework based upon their fieldwork.  This NEA (non-examined assessment) is worth 20% of the entire A Level.