Ysgol Stanwell School

Archer Road, Penarth, Vale of Glamorgan, CF64 2XL


Head of Department
Mrs H Jarman
Mr M Baldwin
Mr J John
Mrs J Laity
Ms L Morgan
Mrs R Selman
Mr R Sheldon

All pupils in Stanwell School study Geography at Key Stage 3 and have the option to continue with their geographical studies in Key Stage 4 and Key Stage 5. Geography is taught in 5 dedicated classrooms as well as having access to the schools Resource Centre, ICT Suites and the local outdoor environment. Stanwell pupils are given the opportunity to develop their geographical techniques, knowledge and understanding while taking part in local, national and international fieldwork.

The Department’s achievements are successful across all age groups providing a range of teaching and learning strategies that are taught by 6 full time staff that are fully trained in all aspects of geography.

Geographical Association LogoThe Geography Department at Stanwell School is a member of the Geographical Association and has taken part in a number of Worldwide Quiz Events.

Geography and ICT

ICT is of paramount importance to the Geography department. We have regular scheduled access to a resource room and the Humanities set of MacBooks, where pupils are able to access geographical websites which include GIS, Google maps, interactive games and geographically linked websites such as Volcano World.

Digimap For SchoolsPupils are encouraged to use a range of websites when researching for their courses. Many of the relevant sites are indicated in their personal Unit Booklets e.g. Digimap For Schools.

Interactive Whiteboards can be found in all geography teaching rooms allowing pupils the chance to learn by interaction. The whiteboards also give a visual element to the subject “A picture paints a thousand words”.

Pupils can also access Geographical resources during homework club on a Wednesday and Thursday night where they have the opportunity to use the IT rooms and Humanities MacBooks to complete their individual investigations, research case studies or practice their maps skills via the internet or in the geography area on public.

For up to date information follow the department on Twitter: @GEOG2XL.

Key Stage 3

In Geography we enable pupils to develop their geographical skills, knowledge and understanding through learning about places, environments and issues at a range of scales in selected locations within Wales, the EU and the wider world. Pupils are given the opportunities to study:

  • Local issues in urban and rural environments
  • The processes and landforms of rivers
  • People and the planet, including population patterns change and movement
  • People as consumers – the chocolate industry
  • The rich and poor world – Fair Trade and globalisation
  • The hazardous world – volcanoes and earthquakes
  • Threatened environments – Tropical Rainforests
  • Tomorrows Citizens – climate change
  • Issues in the wider world – living sustainably
  • Geography in the news and topical events
  • Fieldwork to observe and investigate real people and places

Programme of Study

Year 7 Year 8
Wales and Urban Issues Geography of Chocolate
Rivers and Water Aid Plate Tectonics
Tourism and National Parks TRF
Weather and Climate Change Population
Geography in the News – Hurricanes

Key Stage 4

Pupils at Stanwell follow the WJEC GCSE Course. This specification is divided into two units; each has a balanced content of physical and human themes. The core unit is divided into three physical and three human themes with an underpinning knowledge of key processes and patterns that form the basis of an understanding of environmental interactions and an appreciation of the importance of sustainability in those interactions. The option units offer a choice of three physical and three human themes, each extending the knowledge and understanding of key concepts. Pupils choose one physical option, one human option and one other.

The themes chosen for study involve working at different scales, in different parts of the world including the UK and Wales, countries at different stages of development, and different environments. A variety of places are studied at a range of scales in different parts of the world and in different types of environment. The contribution of physical and human processes to the development of geographical patterns, the geographical characteristics of particular places and environments, and their interdependence is illustrated in both units.

Paper 1 (Core)

Unit of Study Themes Specific Topics Controlled Assessment
The Physical World Water River processes and landforms and Managing Rivers 25% of final grade fieldwork opportunities for collection of study
Climate Change Causes and effects and reducing its impacts
Living in an Active Zone Hazards at plate margins and reducing risk
A Global World Changing Populations World population distribution and future changes in distribution and structure
Interdependence Trends in globalisation and impacts of globalisation
Development Measuring patterns of development and achieving the Millennium Development Goals

Paper 2 (Option)

Unit of Study Themes Specific Topics Controlled Assessment
The Physical World Changing Coasts Coastal processes and landforms, Managing Coasts and Future coastlines 25% of final grade fieldwork opportunities for collection of study
The Global World Retail and Urban Change The changing city centre, changing patterns of retailing and alternative futures
Tourism The changing nature of tourism, the impact of tourism and sustainable tourism


As a department we firmly believe that field trips are an important tool for learning. We can learn different geographical skills on them, work as part of a team, develop important presentation skills, visit new places and discover a unique fashion sense involving mainly wellies and fleeces!

At Key Stage 3 fieldwork tend to centre on the local area, with Year 7s visiting the FSC Discovery Centre at Margam and Year 8s visiting Cadburys World and Bristol Zoo to explore contemporary geographical issues.

At Key Stage 4 fieldwork involves GCSE investigations within the locality of South Wales. Previous destinations have included Penarth, Cowbridge, Cardiff and Tenby. In Year 9 pupils have had the opportunity to visit the site of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

At Key Stage 5 students have to complete two geographical enquiries as part of their studies (one Human and one physical investigation). In the past we have visited the FSC at Netttlecombe and the FSC Discovery Centre Margam. Other geographical areas on interest have included Three Cliffs Bay on the Gower and Regeneration in Cardiff Bay.

As a department we endeavour to give our students the opportunity to explore the wider world by organising International Fieldwork. Destinations have included Barcelona, The Bay of Naples and Iceland. . The aim of the International fieldwork is to allow students to investigate a range of human and physical landscapes in a variety of different countries.

Geography Events: 2015 – 2016

  1. September: Year 13 Deprivation in Cardiff
  2. October: Year 8 Cadbury’s World
  3. October: Geography department Open day
  4. October: Year 10 and 11 International Visit to Sicily
  5. November: Year 12 Field Studies
  6. December: Year 7 Field Studies Centre Discovery Margam
  7. February: Year 12/13 International Visit West Coast of USA
  8. February: Year 9 Coastal/ Tectonic Fieldwork
  9. February: Year 12 Regeneration in Cardiff
  10. June: Year 8 Bristrol Zoo for a Tropical Rainforest experience
  11. Easter Holidays: GCSE revision days

Geography Club

geo-club-2014Every Thursday between 3-4pm in F25 the Geography department runs a ‘Geography Club’ for Year 7 and 8 pupils to attend. The club is led by Mr John, but pupils are encouraged to carry out activities that they enjoy and find interesting. Larger projects in the club have included creating a papier mache volcano and 3D map, creating famous high-rise buildings from around the world such as the Empire State Building and Eiffel Tower using lollypop sticks and researching and preparing a presentation on a country they have close links with. During the summer term, the good weather enables us to utilize the school playing field and carry out investigative tasks created and led by the pupils.

Primary Liaison

Primary Liaison is an important element of our work and we enjoy good links with all our primary partner schools. The Geography department aims to work closely with its partner Primary Schools both to aid the transition for children from Year 6 to Stanwell and to aid continuity in the Geography curriculum.

An opportunity to spend a day at Stanwell School is offered to the pupils of all our feeder Primary Schools. During this day the children follow a timetable of lessons so that they can experience how the school works whilst having the security of the presence of their fellow class mates. Pupils attend a Geography lesson within the department to get a taste of what’s to come in Year Seven Geography at Stanwell.

During these geography sessions the pupils complete tasks linked to ‘It’s a hard Life’’ . The aims of these tasks are to Understand the Difficulties Facing People Living In Poorer Countries of the World.
Each summer the Feeder schools again return to Stanwell for lessons in geography. This provides them with an understanding of what is required from them and introduces them to the Geography team. Questions are answered to reassure the pupils and certificates are issued celebrating the completion of the work. Our bridging project is called ‘I’m a Year 6 pupil get me out of here’.

Our primary colleagues usually forward us samples of the pupil’s year 6 Geography work from our visit and both staff and pupils evaluate their Geographical experience so that we can monitor the level of understanding and the topics that pupils are familiar with before they begin Year 7. This proves invaluable for us to pitch work at the correct level early on in their secondary careers.

Geography Galleries

Geography News

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