At Key Stage Three all pupils study Geography for three periods per fortnight. During this time, pupils are introduced to a wide range of geographical knowledge and skills. Textbooks provide the background while use of information and communication technology helps to encourage research skills. In Form 2 pupils may have the opportunity to study crime statistics from an on-line G.I.S. (Geographic Information System) called NINIS (Northern Ireland Neighbourhood Information Service).
In Form 1 we investigate the geography and weather of the BRA site. In Form 2 the pupils investigate the coastline at Holywood, County Down. They examine coastal defence measures including groynes, sea walls and rock armour. They also determine water percolation rates at different locations on the beach. This work is then submitted to their class teachers as a completed report.
At Key Stage Four we follow the CCEA Geography specification. Again, fieldwork plays a significant role in the curriculum. Pupils use the ICT suite to help analyse the data collected from the rivers fieldtrip to Tollymore Forest Park. This Fieldwork paper is valued at 20% of the GCSE award and allows for collection, analysis and presentation of information.
A-level builds on the knowledge and skills acquired at Key Stages Three and Four. At A2 level decision-making is introduced. Fieldwork includes gathering data for their AS examination based on the Urban Heat Island effect and in M6 we examine coastal protection at Dundrum Bay and Newcastle in Co. Down.