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Early Years Foundation Stage

In the Nursery and Reception classes at Merchants’ Academy, students are immersed in a wide variety of books, stories and songs from around the world. They are given opportunities to experience different cultures through play and directed learning. They are assessed on the early learning outcomes specifically in their knowledge and understanding of the world.

Key Stage One

In Years 1 and 2, students study geography through the Edison Learning Curriculum, which is topic based. There are also wow days when Geography is taught as a special event. This also includes opportunities to immerse in different cultures. Students are also taken on trips to different locations in order to widen experiences.

Yr 1

Hello, I am new here;  Bonjour, je suis nouveau ici

(Geography and Science)

School building and grounds, Key human and physical features of its environment. Comparison with Morocco, Marrakesh - features and climate

What can we learn about our world from stories?(including Wales, Scotland and Ireland)

Geography -Find and locate the countries and capitals on world map, globe and Google Earth


Where will we go for a great day out?

Our Great Exhibition

(History, Geography)

Education, railway journeys, The Great Exhibition

Sig Individualss:

Geography: Routes and London





Pride in Place

What do we like about our place? What makes us proud of our place?

(History and Geography)


Buildings, shops, homes, streets and spaces

The Great Fire of London Sept 2 1666



What makes us like other animals?

 (Science & Geography)

Y2 Science

Geography - Location of creatures in hot and cold areas, mountains, deserts, oceans, jungles, forests, lakes



How did families have fun in the past?

The Seaside

(Geography and History)

Robert Stephenson railway networks and The Rocket

George Hudson the Railway King 1800-1871

Local railway line builders – Morton Peto and Lowestoft; George Tomline and Felixstowe

Sir Peter Hesketh Fleetwood and Fleetwood

Developing the Global Dimension in your Curriculum

Why are the Ancient Greeks so significant for us?

Where did it happen? When did it happen? History and Geography in the news – ongoing LU Y1/2


Key Stage Two

In Years 3-6, students are taught geography through the Edison Learning Curriculum, which is topic based. There are also ‘Wow’ days when geography is taught as a special event. This also includes opportunities to immerse in different cultures. Students are also taken on trips to different locations in order to widen students’ experiences.

Year 3

Let’s go on an adventure. Would we like to visit Guatemala?

(Geography, History and D&T)

Guatemala City and the Lowlands region

Mayan civilisation AD900 and What was happening here at this time? Alfred the Great, Athelstan


Year 4

Why do we speak English at school? Where did English come from?

(History, Geography and Drama)

Overview of the Romans, Anglo-Saxons and Vikings arrival and settlement of the British Isles.

Depth study of a local example of one of them.

Stories selected from Boudica, Sutton Hoo, Augustine, Alfred the Great, Bede

Should we stop eating chocolate?



Origins of Chocolate – Mayan and Aztec societies and the spread to Europe

Biography in a bag – Cadbury and Fry




Year 5

Why would someone build a castle in England? Why don’t we build them now?


A study of an aspect of history or a site dating from a period beyond 1066 that is significant in the locality.

Sig individual: William of Normandy and 1066+, Edward 1st 1272-1307


Year 6

Has there ever been a better time to live here?

A study over time tracing how several aspects of national history are reflected in the locality (this can go beyond 1066)

Possible aspects: political, military, economic, social

(6.3 We are market researchers)

Why do some creatures no longer exist? (not D&T see Summer 2)

Context David Attenborough’s Big Egg


Y6 Science

Evolution & inheritance

Geography – islands Madagascar & the Gallapagos

Why was Charles Darwin the most dangerous man in England in 1859?

Biography in a bag


The Great UK Geographical Challenge


Regions of the United Kingdom



YEARS 7, 8 AND 9

Geography is arguably one of the most important subjects’ students are taught. Many of the issues in our news today link to geography and so the aim of the Merchants’ Academy Geography Department is to equip our students with the knowledge, skills and empathy to understand and engage with some of society’s and the environment’s biggest challenges. Students are taught a range of topics and skills in Years 7-9 that aim to introduce students to a wide variety of places, human and physical processes and geographical issues. We employ an enquiry approach that refers to real examples often in lessons, which helps students to ask important questions about the world and adds relevance to their learning. The topics taught are an important foundation for those students who take Geography further to GCSE or A Level.

Year 7

Year 8

Year 9

Term 1: Finding My Way Around Geography


Term 2: People & Living Spaces



Term 3: Riveting Rivers

Term 1: Cracking Coasts



Term 2: The Development Race and Superpowers



Term 3: Epic Ecosystems & Extreme Environments

Term 1: Tectonic Hazards



Term 2: Weather & Weather Hazards



Term 3: Climate Change and Geographical Challenges

Topics studied and content covered include:


YEARS 10 & 11

Course Title: GCSE Geography
Exam Board: AQA
Qualification: GCSE

About the course

This exciting course is based on a balanced framework of physical and human geography. It allows students to investigate the link between the two themes, and approach and examine the battles between the man-made and natural worlds.

Students will travel the world from their classroom, exploring case studies in the United Kingdom (UK), higher income countries (HICs), newly emerging economies (NEEs) and lower income countries (LICs). Topics of study include climate change, poverty, deprivation, global shifts in economic power and the challenge of sustainable resource use. Students are also encouraged to understand their role in society, by considering different viewpoints, values and attitudes

The course equips students with the knowledge and skills to understand and engage with some of the big geographical challenges facing our society today.

Students will learn to:

  • develop the ability to think creatively, for example, by posing questions that relate to geographical process and concepts that include questioning about spatial pattern and geographical change
  •  develop the ability to think scientifically by collecting and recording appropriate evidence from a range of sources, including fieldwork, before critically assessing the validity of this evidence and synthesising their findings to reach evidenced conclusions that relate to the initial aim of their enquiry
  • develop the ability to think independently by applying geographical knowledge, understanding, skills and approaches appropriately and creatively to real world contexts. In so doing they should appreciate that geography can be ‘messy’ i.e. that real geography does not always match typical or predicted outcomes.


The topics covered include:

  • Tectonic Hazards
  • Weather Hazards
  • Climate Change
  • Ecosystems including Tropical Rainforests and Deserts
  • Management of Ecosystems
  • Coastal Landscapes
  • River Landscapes
  • Urbanisation and Megacities
  • In-depth study of Rio de Janeiro
  • Change in Cities- focus on Bristol
  • Development
  • In-depth study of a Newly Emerging Economy (NEE) - Nigeria
  • Redevelopment of areas
  • How the UK’s economy has changed over time
  • Resource Management
  • Energy Usage and Resources


How it is assessed

Paper 1: Living with The Physical Environment. Written Exam 1hr 30mins. Worth 35% of the course.

Paper 2: Challenges in the Human Environment. Written Exam. 1hr 30mins. Worth 35% of the course.

Paper 3: Geographical Applications. Written Exam. 1hr 15mins. Worth 30% of the course.


Specification Link:

Sixth Form

MA16-Lower 6th and upper 6th


Course Title: A Level Geography                
Exam Board:  Edexcel
Qualification: A Level

About the course

The Edexcel A Level Geography specification offer an issues-based approach to studying geography, enabling students to explore and evaluate contemporary geographical questions and issues such as the consequences of globalisation, responses to hazards, water insecurity and climate change.

The content gives students the opportunity to develop an in-depth understanding of physical and human geography, the complexity of people and environment questions and issues, and to become critical, reflective and independent learners.

A Level Geography has traditionally been a subject that is well-received by university admission tutors due to its mix of science and arts traits. The scientific processes, mathematical techniques, evaluative essay skills and investigative project build a well-rounded and versatile student.

The wide variety of content covered by this specification also allows for easy progression to study Geography and its related sciences at undergraduate level.

Overview of content

Students study:

Component 1: Paper 1 (Paper code: 9GE0/01)

Overview of content:

  • Area of study 1, Topic 1: Tectonic Processes and Hazards
  • Area of study 1, Topic 2: Landscape Systems, Processes and Change – including optional sub-topics from which students choose one from two: 2A: Glaciated Landscapes and Change or 2B: Coastal Landscapes and Change
  • Area of study 3, Topic 5: The Water Cycle and Water Insecurity
  • Area of study 3, Topic 6: The Carbon Cycle and Energy Security


Exam Paper Structure

Section A: Tectonic Processes & Hazards

Section B: Landscape Systems, Processes & Change- Coastal Landscapes

Section C: Physical Systems & Sustainability

Contribution to final grade: 30% of final qualification, 105 marks

How it is assessed: Written examination: 2 hours 15 minutes

Component 2: Paper 2 (Paper code: 9GE0/02)

Overview of content

  • Area of study 2, Topic 3: Globalisation
  • Area of study 2, Topic 4: Shaping Places – including optional sub-topics from which students choose one from two: 4A Regenerating Places or 4B Diverse Places
  • Area of study 4, Topic 7: Superpowers
  • Area of study 4, Topic 8: Global Development and Connections – including optional sub-topics from which students choose one from two: 8A Health, Human Rights and Intervention or 8B Migration, Identity and Sovereignty


Exam Paper Structure

Section A: Globalisation/ Superpowers

Section B: Shaping Places- Regenerating Places

Section C: Global Development & Connections- Migration, Identity & Sovereignty

Contribution to final grade: 30% of final qualification, 105 marks

How it is assessed: Written examination: 2 hours 15 minutes

Component 3:  Paper 3 (Paper code: 9GE0/03)

Overview of content

The specification contains three synoptic themes within the compulsory content areas:

● Players

● Attitudes and actions

● Futures and uncertainties.

The synoptic investigation will be based on a geographical issue within a place-based context that links to the three synoptic themes and is rooted in two or more of the compulsory content areas.

A resource booklet will contain information about the geographical issue. The exam may include short open, open response and resource-linked questions. The examination includes 8-mark, 18-mark and 24-mark extended writing questions. Calculators may be used.

Contribution to final grade: 20% of the qualification, 70 marks

How it is assessed
Written examination: 2 hours and 15 minutes

Component 4: Non-examination assessment: Independent Investigation (9GE0/04)

Overview of content: The student defines a question or issue for investigation, relating to the compulsory or optional content. The topic may relate to any aspect of geography contained within the specification. The student’s investigation will incorporate fieldwork data (collected individually or as part of a group) and own research and/or secondary data. The fieldwork, which forms the focus and context of the individual investigation, may be either human, physical or integrated physical-human. The investigation report will evidence independent analysis and evaluation of data, presentation of data findings and extended writing. Students will be expected to show evidence that they have used both quantitative and qualitative data to support their independent investigation as appropriate to the environment and/or location.

Contribution to final grade: 20% of the qualification, 70 marks.

How it is assessed: The investigation report is internally assessed and externally moderated. The student will produce a written report of 3000–4000 words.

For further information: