Geography is a vocabulary intense subject that can be hard to understand for students who have difficulties with memory retention and learning new word meanings. Wherever possible, real life experiences, visits, objects and photographs should be used to teach new concepts and vocabulary.

Symbol support reinforces vocabulary in a precise way

  • unknown geographical vocabulary such as near, far, travel, journey, routes, features, attractive, holiday, costume, beach, transport, postcard, leisure; can be supported by symbols enabling pupils to have a greater understanding of their meaning.
  • Activities supported with symbols provide pupils with opportunities to over-learn specific vocabulary by repetition


Geography mountain symbols

Geography rivers symbols

SIP Resource Packs

Y3-6  Coasts
Y3-6  Rivers
Y1-2  Around Our School
Y1-2  Harry and Tilly go to the Seaside

For a full list of symbol resource packs visit:


QCA Learning Objectives

Unit 1 Around our School -the local area

To understand the variety of features that form part of the local area; understand the part people play in developing and changing the area

Unit 4 Going to the Seaside

To recall information about the local area and use this to help them study a contrasting area, e.g. the seaside; recognise how each environment is different and changing; use a variety of resources to find out information

Unit 14: Investigating rivers

To learn about rivers and the effects they have on the landscape e.g. the components of the water cycle; how rivers erode, transport and deposit materials to produce particular landscape features; and the characteristics of a river system in another part of the world

Unit 23: Investigating coasts

A unit about coastal environments at local and regional scales. Within the 'water and its effects on landscapes and people' theme in the programme of study, schools may choose to study rivers or coasts.

For more details:


Resources and Tips