Battle for the place of geography

16th January 2009 at 00:00

I was sad to read recently that subjects such as geography, history and religious studies would not be distinct subjects in key stages 1 and 2.

I am fairly new to teaching, but have become aware that geography is battling to survive as a curriculum subject. Geography is more important today than ever. If those in authority do not see the importance of climate change and sustainability in the world, I am concerned for the future.

Young people need to become global citizens and to learn about their local area, their country and the world. With the planned changes, history, geography and religious studies would come under the banner of "human, social and environmental understanding". The advantage of not having them as distinct subjects would allow teachers to introduce them in other parts of the curriculum.

It is an interesting idea and offers much scope for primary teachers. But are we not doing a variation of this already? In my department, we incorporate literacy, maths and ICT into lessons with great success.

We need to reclaim our topics and rebrand geography as a 21st-century subject.

Mike Tidd, Curriculum leader of geography, Cove School, Farnborough, Hampshire.

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