All pupils at Airthrie have the opportunity to study Geography and History (Humanities) in both Key Stage 1 and 2. Airthrie’s location makes it a great place to explore the vibrant history of Cheltenham Spa as well as its interesting geography on the edge of the Cotswolds and its proximity to the Forest of Dean.
Key Stage 1
Pupils develop knowledge of the world, the United Kingdom and the local environment. They learn key geographical and historical vocabulary and skills, such as first-hand observation and a sense of chronology. Separate lessons are taught separately in Topic.
Key Stage 2
Geography at Airthrie is designed to inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people. They develop knowledge of globally significant places and learn about the processes which give rise to key physical and human geographical features of the world. Pupils collect and analyse data gathered through experiences of fieldwork that deepen their understanding of geographical processes. Fieldwork takes place in the local area, making use of The River Chelt and the Forest of Dean. They also learn to interpret geographical sources such as maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems such as online Ordnance Survey mapping and symbols, Google maps and four and six figure grid referencing. The aim is to explore world geography in a fun and challenging way, whether it is visiting our local area, studying rivers or exploding their own volcanoes! In Year 6, all pupils are encouraged to attend a long-weekend residential visit to Osmington Bay in Dorset where they can explore a coastal area while having fun.
In History, the pupils continue to develop a chronologically secure knowledge and understanding of the past, establishing clear narratives within and across the periods they study. They are encouraged to think for themselves and to draw conclusions from evidence. They should understand how our knowledge of the past is constructed from a range of sources and are taught that History is a problem-solving subject and that they are active learners in making connections and discovering more. The subject is brought alive for the pupils by visits to numerous sites of historical importance: the Corinium Museum, Cirencester; the National Roman Legion Museum, Caerleon; Gloucester Cathedral; the Commandery, Worcester; and the Dean Heritage Centre in the Forest of Dean, to name but a few.
Our topics follow those outlined in the National Curriculum and we use both whole-class and small group teaching; we include opportunities for enquiry-based research noting connections, contrasts and trends across time and place. Pupils are encouraged to use a wide variety of rich resources, to take risks and to undertake independent research in Upper Key Stage 2.