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Faculty: Humanities
Geographical concepts Environmental issues

Geography

“Geography is the subject which holds the key to our future.”

Michael Palin

Our aim is to stimulate and encourage the girls to develop an understanding and awareness of geographical locations, concepts and skills, in an ever-changing world. ‘Think local, act global’ is a mind-set that promotes responsibility as a global citizen, making contributions to a sustainable and inclusive future.  Students are encouraged to understand their role in society by considering different viewpoints, values and attitudes.

 

Forms I – III

In order to widen perspective and look at different people, places and environments on a larger scale, a series of case studies and independently researched projects is explored. These include native tribes of rainforests, organic farming, natural hazards, globalisation of the fashion industry, contrasts in development and fieldwork investigations.

Trips to the New Forest, the Living Rainforest, Cheddar Gorge and Rushall Farm, in Berkshire, form the basis of local study and fieldwork. A trip to Barcelona, Spain ensures first-hand cross-curricular experience of this EU country.

 

GCSE

The Edexcel A course enables students to explore the world, the challenges it faces and their own place in it as well as to help prepare them to succeed in their future choices.

There are 3 units based on The Physical Environment (the changing landscapes of the UK – Two studies from coastal and river, Weather hazards and climate change – Two studies of tropical storms and drought and Ecosystems, biodiversity and management – Two studies of tropical rainforests and temperate deciduous woodlands), The Human Environment (Changing cities – Two studies including a UK city and a city in a developing or emerging country, Global development – A study of a developing or emerging country and Resource management – A study of energy or water) and Fieldwork/ UK Challenges where each girl will undertake 3 days of fieldwork and prepare a write-up on which she will be examined.  There is also a study drawing across knowledge and understanding from The Physical Environment and The Human Environment relating to 4 key challenges facing the UK: resource consumption and environmental sustainability, settlement, population and economic, landscape and climate change.

 

A Level

Girls follow the AQA Geography specification, examining the interaction of people and their environments in a wide range of contexts and locations, over space and time and at different scales.  The aim is to excite students’ minds, challenge perceptions and stimulate their investigative and analytical skills.  This qualification is linear, meaning that students will sit all their exams and submit all their non-examination assessment at the end of the course.

There are 3 units based on Physical Geography (Water and carbon cycles, Coastal systems and landscapes as well as Hazards), Human Geography (Global systems and global governance, Changing places, Population and environment) and a Geographical Investigation defined and developed by the student (3000 – 4000 words).

 

Beyond the Classroom

Alongside the commitment to fieldwork trips for every year group, the Geography department supports the view that Geography is for all.

This year the A level Geographers have an opportunity to join with the Lacrosse tour for a field trip to the NW Pacific Coast.

An annual whole school Geography/Photography competition takes place with an interesting theme for staff and students to explore, such as Scapes (2016) and Calm and Chaos (2015). A special badge has been commissioned to celebrate the girls’ achievements.

Regular quizzes appear on the electronic board where current phenomena such as sinkholes and polar vortices appear and girls are challenged to win merits and prizes.

Geography is dynamic and our ‘News of our World’ and annotated whiteboard world map reflect ever-changing issues and impacts across the globe.