Curriculum Statement

Students will be taught a well rounded geography curriculum based around the concept of ‘We are global citizens…’. They will explore key geographical questions such as ‘how our world is becoming more dangerous?’ and ‘are humans sustainable?’ whilst also learning key map, graphical and mathematical skills to succeed in their day to day lives. At GCSE level 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). Areas 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. This further embeds our intent for our students to not only become; but understand why it is important to be a global citizen.

Students in Year 7 start their journey by learning about key geographical skills and investigative geography as these skills underpin their studies throughout their time at HGSC, this allows them to question what happens around them. These lead into the GCSE Specification where students go on to study different ecosystems, landscapes and natural hazards including climate change, which is thought to be the biggest hazard that we might face in the future. Assessment is carefully structured in Year 7 and 8 to introduce and refine geographical skills through a variety of assessments that are self, peer and teacher assessed. Students are assessed through quick knowledge tests as well as longer answer questions.

The same assessment procedure occurs at GCSE level; the assessment schedule is designed in a way that students practise and then refine a key command word in each term in order to both improve their exam technique as well as assessing their knowledge and understanding.

Students will learn the importance of being a global citizen as well as how their own actions can have global effects. They will learn how to live more sustainably in order to look after the planet on which we live. Being a geographer is being a global citizen and this underpins our love of geography. Leaving school with a wider understanding of our role in society will mean that we have been successful in the delivery of our geography curriculum.


Curriculum Overview

KS3 – We are global citizens

Year 7
Term Topic

Where in the world?

Introduction to fieldwork

2 Map skills
3 What is weather and climate?
4 What is the future of our climate?
5 What are the threats to islands around the world?
6 How is our world becoming more dangerous?


Year 8
Term 1 Topic
1 How unique are tropical rainforests?
2 Why and how do people live in hot environments?
3 What threats does the planet face?
4 How is the world’s population changing?
5 Are humans sustainable?
6 How does ice change the world?



Geography is the only GCSE where you can travel the world from your classroom. At Heanor Gate we follow the AQA GCSE curriculum.

The first unit is ‘Living with the physical environment’ and includes natural hazards, the living world and physical landscapes in the UK. The second unit is ‘The Challenge of the human environment’ and includes urban issues and challenges, changing economic world and the challenge of resource management.

Students also take part in a variety of fieldwork and gain a range of geographical skills including evaluating geographical issues.



At Heanor Gate we follow the Edexcel Geography A’Level which offers an engaging and contemporary 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 specification 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. This specification has four equally-weighted content areas of study, offering both compulsory and optional content, assessed through three external assessments and one piece of non-examination assessment. The course requires students to complete 4 compulsory days of fieldwork which are delivered through an exciting 4 day residential trip (approximate cost £260).



Curriculum Statement

It is our intention that students will leave their history education with a better understanding of how history is constructed and with the skills to tackle misconceptions from the past.

Students will understand that people in the past had hopes, faced fears and desired dreams but in the context that they were living in. They will appreciate that we are not smarter or better simply because we are born later. They will understand how the modern world came to be by studying the major chronological events in British, European and world history whilst also developing the skills necessary to debate, analyse, argue and persuade.

The curriculum is organised along broad chronological lines but we adopt a thematic approach whereby students are encouraged to explore continuity and change across the 11th and 20th century, for example the role of the government in advancing scientific change, the impact of war on changing societal structure.

Students will leave HGSC with the ability to critically reflect on the role of themselves and others within society. Such analytical awareness will enable them to pursue careers in law, the civil service and in other historical fields.


Curriculum Overview


Key Stage 3 History runs from Year 7, through to half way through Year 9. During this time students will engage with a curriculum that begins with the Viking attacks on Britain in the 800s C.E. and culminates with the outbreak of war in 1939 C.E.

In between these pivotal events students will try and work out;

  • Why the Normans were able to conquer and the impacts of that event on subsequent history
  • What life in the medieval world was really like
  • Why Genghis Khan is the most famous Mongolian i history
  • The reasons for the outbreak of Civil War in the 17th Century
  • Why the British wanted an empire
  • How Britain came to be a democracy
  • Why the First World War is still worth talking about and who should really get the blame for the Second World War.



Students study the development of medicine through time in a unit that allows them to chart social, scientific and medical developments from 1250-present. This is followed by a depth study on the nature of Elizabeth I’s reign. Students then go international with our study of the conquest, settlement and development of the American West during the 19th Century. Finally students will explore the rise and fall of the Weimar Republic and how Hitler rose to power and was able to set up the infamous Nazi regime. Students follow the Edexcel specification.



In Year 12 students will begin their studies of the early Tudor Monarchs with the rise of Henry VII, a suspicious, secretive, manipulative and influential king. The spot light is then stolen by Henry’s far more famous and flamboyant son and his six wives. The final part of this unit analyses the so-called ‘Mid-Tudor Crisis’ during the years of Henry VIII’s successors, Edward and Mary.

Students will also explore 20th Century Germany in its two periods of democracy and dictatorship. Students will study pre-war Germany; what life was like in the Nazi state at peace and during wartime; life in the divided Germany, including under the watchful gaze of the infamous Stasi.

Finally, students will study the development of Civil Rights in the USA since the end of the American Civil War. This covers developments for African Americans, including the famous Civil Rights campaigns of the 1950s and 1960s; the fight for equal rights for both women and workers; life for Native Americans; as well as the impact of global events on the USA. Students follow the OCR specification.