Welcome to the Geography Department!

Our daily lives are interwoven with geography. Each of us lives in a unique place and in constant interaction with our surroundings. Geographic knowledge and skills are essential for us to understand the activities and patterns of our lives and the lives of others. 

1. Grosvenor, Center for Geographic Education, Why Geography Is Important (2007)

In the Geography department we believe that it is essential to understand our place in this world and that understanding this helps to support study in all other disciplines.  In Geography courses at all levels we look at how our lives are interwoven with the natural environment and with others,  we examine patterns and trends across the natural and human worlds and we investigate the impacts that natural processes and human choices have on each other.  In grade 9 Geography, we examine a variety of issues facing Canada both from a human perspective (Changing Population, Liveable Cities) and a physical perspective (Physical Environment, Managing Resources).  At the  senior level courses in the Geography department look at natural disasters and processes (Forces of Nature, CGF 3MI), trends and impacts of travel and tourism (CGG 3OI), impacts and implications of world events (World Issues, CGW 4UI), and how to manage our environment in a sustainable way (CGR 4MI).

Extra opportunities in Geography

The Environmental Club meets regularly throughout the school year.  Typical activities include planning green initiatives within the school (i.e. green bins; awareness campaigns), caring for hens (i.e. feeding, collecting eggs), caring for the PHS vegetable and flower gardens, tree planting, and more.   This is a student driven group supported by the Geography department.

Video: Welcome Grade 9’s

Student FAQs

Q: Can I take a grade 11 course in grade 10?

A:  Yes!  Senior Level geography courses such as “Forces of Nature” (CGF 3MI) and “Travel and Tourism” (CGG 3OI) can be taken in your grade 10, 11 or 12 year.

Q: I’m not good at maps!  Will I have a problem in Geography?

A: While maps are certainly a tool that we use frequently, there is so much more to Geography.   In Geography we learn to look at the world around us in a variety of different ways.  For example, when we study issues like climate change we want to look at the impacts on people, the environment, the economy and on politics.  Maps help us to understand those impacts but aren’t the only way.

Q: I love learning about natural disasters.  Is there a course for that?

A: Yes!  We recommend that you take “Forces of Nature” (CGF 3MI).  In that course we study hurricanes, volcanoes, earthquakes, climate change and more.  We learn about the science behind disasters and how society and the environment are impacted.

Parent FAQs

Q: Should I expect that my child will have homework in Geography?

A: Yes!  While we may not have homework every night, a certain amount of homework does need to be done each day.  In the absence of a particular assignment, students should be reviewing the topics of the day each evening, engaging in learning about current events and observing the world around them.

Q: Why should my child study geography?

A:  Geography is a way of looking at the world and can be used to support any discipline.  By taking geography courses your child will learn to look at the world through a variety of lenses and will learn to make connections between people, the economy, politics and the environment.  Students will develop skills that are transferable to many other disciplines.  Geography is a subject that provides pathways to many different careers including those in environmental science, sustainable development, geopolitics, engineering, urban planning, travel and tourism, landscape design, and many more.

Q: Is there an exam in Geography?

A: There is no exam at the Grade 9 level.  Instead, we will complete a number of “summative” assessments that allow students to communicate the knowledge in a variety of ways.  Types of assessments include, but are not limited to, infographics, essays, presentations, annotated maps and website creation.

Department Staff

Ms. Gardiner  laura_gardiner@wrdsb.ca  Department Head

Ms. Knarr  stephanie_knarr@wrdsb.ca

Mr. Peters galen_peters@wrdsb.ca

Mr. Tilt andrew_tilt@wrdsb.ca

Courses and curriculum documents

CGC1DI, CGC1PI Issues in Canadian Geography

CGF3MI Forces of Nature

CGG3OI Travel and Tourism

CGW4UI World Issues

CGR4MI The environment and resource management

Please read course descriptions under title Canadian and World Studies

Gr 9 & 10 Canadian and World Studies curriculum document

Gr 11 & 12 Canadian and World Studies curriculum document