Geography

The number of pupils opting for the subject and feedback from lesson observations show that many pupils enjoy geography at Ysgol John Bright! We are a close knit and hard working team and we make every effort to ensure that our teaching is varied, suited to pupil needs and up-to-date. All lessons are taught by the 4 specialist geographers and we occupy our own suite of 4 specialist rooms.

Geography examination results have, for several years, been above the school and national average. Being an optional subject means that our pass rates vary from year to year, but in 2009 30% of students gained A or A* grades at GCSE and 86.5% got at least a C with nobody below an E grade. At A level in 2009, 5 out of 24 students gained A grades with 88% gaining at least a C.

The subject leader and head of faculty is Mr Trevor Taylor. A lot of the development work, however is done on a joint basis. Mrs Naomi Whitham keeps us all in tune with ICT developments, whilst Mr John Bagnall has developed expertise in teaching of special needs groups and adapts lessons accordingly.

We have made great strides in the use of ICT to enhance learning over recent years and have developed our own e-mail facility (yjb@yahoo.co.uk) to encourage greater links with parents and to facilitate out of school learning. Most lessons are now taught through powerpoint, allowing us to import video clips and animations whilst also facilitating the adaption of work for different groups.

Units of Geography are taught within mixed ability Humanities classes in Year 7. In Years 8 and 9, pupils are in sets and have 2 geography lessons per week. We tend to have 3 G.C.S.E. groups and a C.O.E.A. group at Key stage 4, each having 3 lessons per week. At A level, group sizes have varied from 8 to 33 over recent years. Several pupils go on to take Geography or related courses at university; in recent years former students have climbed Everest and got involved in rainforest preservation programmes!

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