Our Planet, Our World

Year 3

Unit Overview

This project teaches children to locate countries and cities, and use grid references, compass points and latitude and longitude. They discover the five major climate zones. They learn about significant places in the United Kingdom and their closet city of Manchester. The skill of creating a sketch map is also developed in this unit of work.


Creating their own sketch map.


Labelling maps.

Making notes during research lessons.


Creating their own sketch map of the playground.

Unit Sequence: Learning Intentions

  1. Use maps, atlases, globes and digital/computer mapping to locate countries and describe features studied. Finding and naming countries and continents they are on. Where are features such as Victoria Falls, Lake Victoria etc? Locate equator, North and South Poles/hemispheres. Place picture labels on world map. Question examples Which country is furthest south in Africa? In which continent is Brazil? What is the capital of India? Of which country is Beijing the capital? Which countries border Lake Victoria?

  2. Use four-figure grid references and 8 point compass to describe the location of objects and places on a simple map. Using world map with grid references on locate countries, continents, features. Using a simplified fictional map locate features on this map using 8 point compass and give directions to get from one place to another to another.

  3. Analyse primary data, identifying any patterns observed. Locate countries and major cities in Europe (including Russia) on a world map. Using climate zones map answer questions about the world. Using an atlas research where European countries and cities are located and place on a map of Europe.

  4. Classify, compare and contrast different types of geographical feature. Using sorting cards provided on Cornerstones (Engage, lesson 2) sort features in to human and physical. Research information about key features within the U.K.. Record where these features are on U.K. map using Google Earth.

  5. Name, locate and describe some major counties and cities in the UK. What is a county? Find our county. Locate counties surrounding ours. Label on a map. Research what our county is famous for.

  6. Describe and understand key aspects of human geography, including: types of settlement and land use. Look at types of land use-agricultural, commercial, recreational, residential, transportation in the U.K. Look at rural and urban areas (population map), why are some places less urban? Use atlases to find out/give clues, e.g. mountainous, flood plains. Look at Manchester-why has it grown so much?-canals, industrial revolution,

  7. To name and locate cities of the U.K., identify key features and how some have changed over time. -Study the city of Manchester. Where is Manchester located in the U.K. Research any key physical features and human features (Flat, rivers, Cathedral, began as a Roman fort, important in industry, canals etc.), what does Manchester host-PRIDE.

  8. To use basic geographical vocab to refer to physical and human features. To record and present human and physical features in the local area using a sketch map. Zoom in from Manchester on Google maps to the town of Middleton to then the school grounds. Create own sketch map of the school grounds adding key features. Pick their favourite and least favourite place to play. Label these and give reasons.


Quiz on types of maps and what they are useful for.