Geography

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Rationale

In a world of increasing global integration and international mobility, it is critical to the wellbeing and sustainability of the environment and society that young Australians develop a holistic understanding of the world.

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Aims

The Australian Curriculum: Geography aims to ensure that students develop:

a sense of wonder, curiosity and respect about places, people, cultures and environments throughout the world
a deep geographical knowledge of their own locality, Australia, the Asia region and the world

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Structure

The Australian Curriculum: Geography is organised in two related strands: geographical knowledge and understanding, and geographical inquiry and skills.
Geographical knowledge and understanding strand
Geographical knowledge refers to the facts, generalisations, principles, theories and models developed in Geography.

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PDF documents

Resources and support materials for the Australian Curriculum: Geography are available as PDF documents. 
Geography: Sequence of content 7-10
Geography: Sequence of achievement 7-10  

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Glossary

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Year 7

Year 7 Level Description

There are two units of study in the Year 7 curriculum for Geography: ‘Water in the world’ and ‘Place and liveability’.

‘Water in the world’ focuses on water as an example of a renewable environmental resource. This unit examines the many uses of water, the ways it is perceived and valued, its different forms as a resource, the ways it connects places as it moves through the environment, its varying availability in time and across space, and its scarcity. ‘Water in the world’ develops students’ understanding of the concept of environment, including the ideas that the environment is the product of a variety of processes, that it supports and enriches human and other life, that people value the environment in different ways and that the environment has its specific hazards. Water is investigated using studies drawn from Australia, countries of the Asia region, and countries from West Asia and/or North Africa.

‘Place and liveability’ focuses on the concept of place through an investigation of liveability. This unit examines factors that influence liveability and how it is perceived, the idea that places provide us with the services and facilities needed to support and enhance our lives, and that spaces are planned and managed by people. It develops students’ ability to evaluate the liveability of their own place and to investigate whether it can be improved through planning. The liveability of places is investigated using studies drawn from Australia and Europe.

The content of this year level is organised into two strands: geographical knowledge and understanding, and geographical inquiry and skills. These strands are interrelated and have been developed to be taught in an integrated manner, and in ways that are appropriate to specific local contexts. The order and detail in which they are taught are programming decisions.

Key inquiry questions

A framework for developing students’ geographical knowledge, understanding and skills is provided through the inclusion of inquiry questions and specific inquiry skills, including the use and interpretation of maps, photographs and other representations of geographical data.

The key inquiry questions for Year 7 are:

  • How do people’s reliance on places and environments influence their perception of them?
  • What effect does the uneven distribution of resources and services have on the lives of people?
  • What approaches can be used to improve the availability of resources and access to services?

Year 7 Content Descriptions

Unit 1: Water in the world

Classification of environmental resources and the forms that water takes as a resource (ACHGK037 - Scootle )
  • classifying resources into renewable, non-renewable and continuous resources, and investigating examples of each type
    • Sustainability
  • describing how water is an available resource when it is groundwater, soil moisture (green water), and surface water in dams, rivers and lakes (blue water), and a potential resource when it exists as salt water, ice or water vapour
The way that flows of water connects places as it moves through the environment and the way this affects places (ACHGK038 - Scootle )
  • explaining how the movement of water through the environment connects places (for example, the melting of snow in spring feeding rivers and dams downstream)
  • investigating the environmental, economic and social uses of water and the effects of water as it connects people and places (for example, the effects of water diversion in the Snowy Mountains)
  • investigating the importance of environmental flows
The quantity and variability of Australia’s water resources compared with other continents (ACHGK039 - Scootle )
  • investigating the main causes of rainfall and applying their knowledge to explain the seasonal rainfall patterns in their own place and in a place with either significantly higher or lower rainfall
  • interpreting the spatial distribution of rainfall in Australia and comparing it with the distribution of that of other continents
  • using the concept of the water balance to compare the effects of rainfall, run-off and evaporation on the availability of water in Australia and other continents
The nature of water scarcity and ways of overcoming it, including studies drawn from Australia and West Asia and/or North Africa (ACHGK040 - Scootle )
  • Sustainability
  • investigating the causes of water scarcity (for example, an absolute shortage of water (physical), inadequate development of water resources (economic), or the ways water is used)
    • Sustainability
  • discussing the advantages and disadvantages of strategies to overcome water scarcity (for example, recycling (‘grey water’), stormwater harvesting and re-use, desalination, inter-regional transfer of water and trade in virtual water, and reducing water consumption)
    • Sustainability
  • examining why water is a difficult resource to manage and sustain (for example, because of its shared and competing uses and variability of supply over time and space)
    • Sustainability
  • investigating whether the use of water in their place is sustainable
  • investigating land use management practices that have adversely affected water supply, such as land clearing and some farming practices
    • Sustainability
Economic, cultural, spiritual and aesthetic value of water for people, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and peoples of the Asia region (ACHGK041 - Scootle )
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures
  • Asia and Australia’s Engagement with Asia
  • examining and comparing places in Australia and countries of the Asia region that have economies and communities based on irrigation (for example, rice production in the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area in NSW and the Mekong Delta in Vietnam)
    • Asia and Australia’s Engagement with Asia
  • exploring the multilayered meanings (material, cultural and spiritual wellbeing) associated with rivers, waterways, waterholes, seas, lakes, soaks and springs for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples
    • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures
  • examining bays, rivers, waterfalls or lakes in Australia and in countries of the Asia region that have been listed as either World Heritage sites or national parks for their aesthetic and cultural value
    • Asia and Australia’s Engagement with Asia
  • investigating the spiritual significance of water in an Asian culture
    • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures
    • Asia and Australia’s Engagement with Asia
Causes, impacts and responses to an atmospheric or hydrological hazard (ACHGK042 - Scootle )
  • explaining the physical causes and the temporal and spatial patterns of an atmospheric or hydrological hazard through a study of either droughts, storms, tropical cyclones or floods
  • explaining the economic, environmental and social impacts of a selected atmospheric or hydrological hazard on people and places, and describing community responses to the hazard

Unit 2: Place and liveability

Factors that influence the decisions people make about where to live and their perceptions of the liveability of places (ACHGK043 - Scootle )
  • investigating their and others’ interpretations of the concept of liveability and choices about where to live (for example, connections to cultural groups, adolescent ‘bright lights’ attraction, retiree tree change and families with children locating near schools, and other facilities)
  • discussing the concept of liveability and the ways it is measured and comparing objective measures such as transportation infrastructure with subjective measures such as people's perceptions
    • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures
  • comparing student access to and use of places and spaces in their local area and evaluating how this affects perceptions of liveability
  • discussing that many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples choose to live on their Country/Place or might prefer to if they had the choice
The influence of accessibility to services and facilities on the liveability of places (ACHGK044 - Scootle )
  • comparing accessibility to and availability of a range of services and facilities between different types of settlements (urban, rural and remote) in Australia and other countries (for example, access to clean water, sanitation, education and health services)
  • examining the role transport plays in people’s ability to access services and participate in activities in the local area
  • comparing transportation and accessibility in Australian cities with cities in countries of the Asia region or Europe
    • Asia and Australia’s Engagement with Asia
  • Sustainability
  • researching the effects of air pollution on the liveability of cities
  • explaining the importance of water quality to the liveability of places, now and into the future
  • investigating the concept of environmental quality and surveying the environmental quality of their local area and its effect on liveability
    • Sustainability
The influence of social connectedness and community identity on the liveability of place (ACHGK046 - Scootle )
  • discussing the different types of places where people can feel included or excluded, safe or threatened, and evaluating how this affects perceptions about liveability of places
    • Sustainability
  • investigating the extent to which people in their place are socially connected or socially isolated and its effect on liveability
    • Sustainability
Strategies used to enhance the liveability of places, especially for young people, including examples from Australia and Europe (ACHGK047 - Scootle )
  • researching methods implemented in Australia and Europe to improve the liveability of a place, and evaluating their applicability to their own locality
  • developing a specific proposal to improve an aspect of the liveability of their place, taking into account the needs of diverse groups in the community, including young people (for example, through fieldwork in the local recreation area) or traditional owners (for example, developing bilingual signage or Indigenous garden projects in the local area)
    • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures
  • discussing the impact of housing density on the liveability of places
    • Sustainability
  • examining whether liveability and environmental sustainability can be enhanced at the same time
    • Sustainability

Observing, questioning and planning

Develop geographically significant questions and plan an inquiry, using appropriate geographical methodologies and concepts (ACHGS047 - Scootle )
  • developing questions about an area of focus in the geographical knowledge and understanding strand (for example, the causes of water scarcity or factors affecting the liveability of a place)
  • developing questions to investigate patterns of spatial distribution of rainfall in Australia and other places
  • using a range of methods, including digital technologies, to plan and conduct an information search about the quantity and variability of water in Australia and another country from another continent

Collecting, recording, evaluating and representing

Evaluate sources for their reliability and usefulness and select, collect and record relevant geographical data and information, using ethical protocols, from appropriate primary and secondary sources (ACHGS048 - Scootle )
  • gathering relevant data from a range of primary sources (for example, from observation and annotated field sketches, surveys and interviews, or photographs) about the impacts of and responses to a hydrological hazard, or the factors influencing decisions people make about where to live
  • collecting geographical information from secondary sources (for example, thematic maps, weather maps, climate graphs, compound column graphs and population pyramids, reports, census data and the media)
  • applying ethical research methods, including the use of protocols for consultation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities
    • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures
  • considering the reliability of primary and secondary data by finding out how and when it was collected, by whom and for what purpose
Represent data in a range of appropriate forms, for example climate graphs, compound column graphs, population pyramids, tables, field sketches and annotated diagrams, with and without the use of digital and spatial technologies (ACHGS049 - Scootle )
  • constructing tables, graphs, maps and diagrams to represent the data collected about water scarcity and liveability of places
  • creating an annotated diagram to show: how water flows through the environment and connects places; or the influence of environmental quality on the liveability of places
    • Sustainability
Represent spatial distribution of different types of geographical phenomena by constructing appropriate maps at different scales that conform to cartographic conventions, using spatial technologies as appropriate (ACHGS050 - Scootle )
  • creating a map to show the spatial distribution and patterns of liveability, using computer mapping software
  • developing a map to show the spatial distribution of measures of the liveability of their own place, or a selected hydrological hazard in Australia and another region of the world

Interpreting, analysing and concluding

Interpret geographical data and other information using qualitative and quantitative methods, and digital and spatial technologies as appropriate, to identify and propose explanations for spatial distributions, patterns and trends, and infer relationships (ACHGS051 - Scootle )
  • using aerial images of contrasting places to identify differences in housing density
  • using graphs, weather maps and satellite images to examine the temporal and spatial patterns of a selected hydrological hazard in Australia and another region of the world (for example, countries of the Asia region or of the Pacific region)
    • Asia and Australia’s Engagement with Asia
  • interpreting various types of maps (for example, weather, isopleth, topographic, political, thematic, diagrammatic)
  • using digital maps and overlays of an area to observe, describe and contrast the spatial associations of geographical phenomena (for example, the relationship between economic activities and river systems and the availability of surface water)
Apply geographical concepts to draw conclusions based on the analysis of the data and information collected (ACHGS052 - Scootle )
  • reviewing the results of an analysis to propose an answer to an inquiry question, using as an organiser at least one of the concepts of place, space, environment, interconnection, sustainability, scale or change
    • Sustainability

Communicating

Present findings, arguments and ideas in a range of communication forms selected to suit a particular audience and purpose; using geographical terminology and digital technologies as appropriate (ACHGS053 - Scootle )
  • presenting a report, supported by graphic representations, to communicate a reasoned argument (for example, to propose actions to ensure future water security)
    • Sustainability

Reflecting and responding

Reflect on their learning to propose individual and collective action in response to a contemporary geographical challenge, taking account of environmental, economic and social considerations, and predict the expected outcomes of their proposal (ACHGS054 - Scootle )
  • Sustainability
  • reflecting on personal values and attitudes and how these influence responses to an issue (for example, the effect of perceptions of crime on liveability)
  • proposing actions to respond to geographical issues related to environmental and economic sustainability (for example, ensuring a sustainable supply of water, after considering the possible outcomes for different groups)
    • Sustainability

Year 7 Achievement Standards

By the end of Year 7, students describe geographical processes that influence the characteristics of places and how the characteristics of places are perceived and valued differently. They explain interconnections between people and places and environments and describe how these interconnections change places and environments. They describe alternative strategies to a geographical challenge referring to environmental, economic and social factors.

Students identify geographically significant questions to frame an inquiry. They evaluate a range of primary and secondary sources to locate useful information and data. They record and represent data and the location and distribution of geographical phenomena in a range of forms, including large-scale and small-scale maps that conform to cartographic conventions. They interpret and analyse geographical maps, data and other information to propose simple explanations for spatial distributions, patterns, trends and relationships, and draw conclusions. Students present findings and arguments using relevant geographical terminology and digital technologies in a range of communication forms. They propose action in response to a geographical challenge, taking account of environmental, economic and social factors, and describe the expected effects of their proposal.


Year 7 Work Sample Portfolios