Our geography curriculum identifies the knowledge and skills that pupils are to learn.  The knowledge in geography is organised into 2 forms: Substantive Knowledge and Disciplinary Knowledge.

Substantive knowledge sets out the content that is to be learned. By following the national curriculum, we address this through four interrelated forms:

  • locational knowledge
  • place knowledge
  • human and physical processes (or ‘environmental’)
  • geographical skills.

Through a high-quality geography education, we aim to inspire in pupils, a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives.

Teaching equips pupils with knowledge about diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes.

Our curriculum ensures that pupils' progress, and their growing knowledge about the world, helps them to deepen their understanding of the interaction between physical and human processes, and of the formation and use of landscapes and environments.

Geographical knowledge, understanding and skills provide the frameworks and approaches that explain how the Earth’s features at different scales are shaped, interconnected and change over time.

Disciplinary knowledge considers how geographical knowledge originates and is revised. It is through disciplinary knowledge that pupils learn the practices of geographers.

Our geography curriculum reflects teachers’ careful thought about what is to be taught, the rationale for it, the sequencing of learning and the relationships between the forms of knowledge. With this in place, pupils are likely to know, remember and be able to do more.



The national curriculum for geography aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • develop contextual knowledge of the location of globally significant places – both terrestrial and marine – including their defining physical and human characteristics and how these provide a geographical context for understanding the actions of processes
  • understand the processes that give rise to key physical and human geographical features of the world, how these are interdependent and how they bring about spatial variation and change over time
  • are competent in the geographical skills needed to:
    • collect, analyse and communicate with a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork that deepen their understanding of geographical processes
    • interpret a range of sources of geographical information, including maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS)
    • communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length