National Curriculum Consultation 2012
During spring and summer 2012, the GA worked hard to create a complete set of proposals for a new geography curriculum. This work drew heavily on our 2011 Geography Curriculum Consultation (read the full report of the findings). The proposals are outlined below.
Between September and October 2012 this page was viewed nearly 4000 times while the Key Stage Content PDF had more than 1000 downloads.
We received 195 responses to the consultation through the questionnaire, the comments area and in individual emails and letters. Our thanks go to everyone who got involved - your views will help shape our response to government when the public consultation opens.
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About the proposals
The GA's proposals emphasise the essential core of geographical content which should be taught to every pupil. This is our response to the 2010 White Paper The Importance of Teaching, which stated that 'The National Curriculum should set out clearly the core knowledge and understanding that all children should be expected to acquire in the course of their schooling' (para 4.7).
The essential core is therefore not all that pupils will be taught. The diagram below shows the relationship between the subject core and the curriculum taught in two different schools:
The GA supports this new focus on subject rigour, but we do not support a 'curriculum of compliance'. A curriculum that narrowly focuses on a set of given facts and expects children to passively absorb them is not what we want. We believe that our proposals will promote professional engagement, encouraging teachers and students to be involved with geography as a subject discipline (which of course does include enabling facts!). The GA uses the term curriculum making as a way of describing teachers' work in this way, emphasising the need to balance the competing demands of student requirements, pedagogic technique and the subject discipline.
When we published our manifesto A Different View in 2009, we laid down some of the foundations for our current National Curriculum proposals. A key element was the identification of thinking geographically as being one of the outcomes of studying geography in schools - this is defined in our proposals and has become their cornerstone.
Please read through the following documents and leave your feedback below.
1. Thinking Geographically (PDF)
This short paper will help you and your colleagues discuss what it means to 'think geographically' and why this is important.
These show how students can progress through the key stages as they develop their ability to think geographically.
This is a list of content for each key stage. It shows the core requirement, each beginning with a guiding question. This can be read like a course 'specification' or syllabus, and the basis for your scheme of work.
4. Content exemplars (PDF)
Five exemplars (one from each key stage with Key Stage 2 split in two) which have a broad description of the content and specific assessment indicators.
Your opinions will make a difference. We will reflect them in our discussions with the government about the requirements of the curriculum and the views of teachers. We will also use them to inform the next phase of our work.
- Do you support the GA's proposals?
- Is the level of detail appropriate?
- Do the proposals provide the right level of support for planning, teaching and assessing geography?
- Do the aims and key stage 'outcomes statements' provide a clear rationale?
- What further support do you think is required to implement such a curriculum successfully?
You can use the open comment box at the foot of the page to respond freely to one or all of these questions.
Alternatively, please complete the following questionnaire which we think should take around ten minutes once you have read and absorbed the materials.
Comment on this page
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