Teachers support for Topics
For help with the structure and delivery of Hamilton’s Topics, see our User Guide to Topics.
This is a lively and fun topic to teach children fieldwork and observational skills as they study the geography of their schools, the grounds and the key human and physical features of the surrounding environment. We have included a final Block to help children compare their local area knowledge with a small area in Kenya.
Through a series of lively activities children will build upon their knowledge of parks in their local area. With the help of Steve Backshall they will explore features of parks and develop their geographical skills. Children will make a park model and present their research and findings in a park exhibition!
This Topic is written for Key Stage 1. If you want to use this Topic for a different Key Stage, you will need to consider how to adapt the outcomes, content, delivery methods, resources and differentiation, as well as the relevant National Curriculum objectives.
Steve Backshall introduces the sessions and the class challenge: To research their local park and how to improve it! Children begin by examining the painting Children in the Park by Paul Dupuy, exploring the features of parks and their likes and dislikes.
Visit the local park. Start with a scavenger hunt, use maps, compass points and directional language to explore the grounds. Make a vox-pop video and test the playground!
Children get to grips with maps! Steve teaches children about map symbols and keys. Children make a map of their local park and help a toy find some treasure!
Children will use straws, cardboard, wool and tape to make human/physical features for a park model.
Children will present their research and work Steve Backshall style- with enthusiasm! They will think about how they can campaign to change an aspect of their local park.
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