When it comes to Geography we normally cover the topics together (my son is in year 5 and my daughter is in year 8) and it works really well. My youngest has jumped right in and done Rivers, Erosion, Biomes, Tectonic plates and Weather with his older sister quite happily (I know I am missing some but those are what jumps to mind). We do the “theory” part together and then I often give them slightly different activities based on their ages. It just works so I really have no intention of changing that. But at the moment my daughter is working through Pride and Prejudice and we are doing a lot of longer written activities on it and my son is not joining in with that. So we had a bit of a think about what he could work on while she did her English Literature and he came up with some activities on the UK and Europe (and granted we have probably not done enough on this side of Geography). I wanted something that he could work though almost independently (because I am very involved in the Pride and Prejudice work), possibly a set where he could read about an area and then do a linked activity – well that was the idea. So I had a look and although I could find possible options on Twinkl just for ease I decided to go with the CGP Books (mainly because I could order the books, not worry about printing out pages and he could just get on with it.)
Now I have not been a huge fan of the CGP KS2 books in the past, I found the History ones a bit brief and well History is one subject that we really dive into. We read historical fiction books, we do art, we watch documentaries, we tend to jump right in and I just never felt like the CGP History books fitted in with our style. But because he was going to try this “module” more independently, more as a separate topic I thought they might work well. And they did. He has already flown through his UK set and is just about to start the Europe set. And yes, there are sections where I do feel I would like more detail but we are looking at this as a chance for him to work independently and give him a good foundation (in other words I will be coming back to some areas in more detail later on possibly as a joint activity with both kids).
So what do you get? The Study Book and the Activity Book really do work together. For every double page in the Study Book you get a double page in the Activity Book and if you have read the Study book pages the kids can answer the activity book questions. They do NOT contain a set of “answers” but honestly the answers are in the text in the study book, you will not struggle to know if the kids have gotten the answers correct.
The Activity Book questions are also great foundation Geography questions. What I mean by this is they weave in questions about erosion, land formations, weather, biomes all kinds of topics that the kids do cover in more detail later on. Also the questions are not massive paragraph questions, so if your kid is not a keen writer they should be fine. And the questions include things like reading maps, weather graphs, grid locations, writing a postcards or creating an advertisement.
The UK Books covers (i.e. each double page deals with a separate section as follows)
- The UK
- The Organisation of the UK
- In the City
- In the Country
- Changes in land use
- North Eastern England
- South Eastern England
- Eastern England
- South Western England
- Western England
- Southern Scotland
- Central Scotland
- Northern Scotland
- South Wales
- Central and Northern Wales
- Northern Ireland
- Where do you Live?
The Europe Books covers (i.e. each double page deals with a separate section as follows)
- The countries of Europe
- Natural Europe
- Separate by Sea (The British Isles and France)
- The Centre of the Union
- The Iberian Peninsula
- Land of the Midnight Sun
- The Baltic Nations
- Land of the Alps
- In the Middle
- Following the Danube
- Crossing into Asia (a bit on Russia)
- The Eastern Edge
- At the Ends of Europe (Turkey, Armenia, Georgia)
- Around the Adriatic
- South Eastern Europe
- Working Together
So far we are really happy with these KS2 Geography Books.
Here are links for the 4 books mentioned in this post
KS2 Discover & Learn: Geography – United Kingdom Study Book: ideal for home learning (CGP KS2 Geography)
KS2 Discover & Learn: Geography – United Kingdom Activity Book: perfect for home learning (CGP KS2 Geography)
KS2 Discover & Learn: Geography – Europe Study Book: ideal for home learning (CGP KS2 Geography)
KS2 Discover & Learn: Geography – Europe Activity Book: ideal for home learning (CGP KS2 Geography)
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