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Literacy and numeracy

Geography lessons offer great scope for developing students’ literacy and numeracy and provide plentiful opportunities for students to develop effective reading, writing and numeracy skills and communicate orally. Promoting literacy and numeracy is seen as a responsibility for all teachers in the National Curriculum.

The DfE Frameworks for ITT and ECTs emphasise that every teacher can improve students’ literacy by explicitly teaching reading, writing and oral language skills. Good literacy and numeracy skills are necessary for geographical study to help students understand geographical concepts, develop their geographical thinking and communicate ideas.

The DfE ITT criteria (2023) require that prior to the award of QTS trainees must demonstrate competence in the following areas:

  • Speaking, listening and communicating using standard English grammar and clear pronunciation. You should use vocabulary relevant to the situation to convey instructions, questions, information, concepts and ideas with clarity. Teachers should read fluently and with good understanding.
  • Writing that is clear, accurate, legible and coherent, using correct spelling and punctuation. It should reflect the high standards of accuracy their professional role demands.
  • The numeric ability to use data and graphs to interpret information, identify patterns and trends and draw appropriate conclusions. Teachers need to interpret pupil data, understand statistics and graphs and complete mathematical calculations fluently.

Any shortfalls in a trainee’s English and mathematics must be undertaken by the trainee teacher. It is your responsibility to secure this, which will be assured by your ITT provider.

Start by looking at these aspects of literacy and numeracy.