Guidelines for the use of Finding the ports of Britain

Activity title:
Finding the ports of Britain

Curriculum area: Geography

NC objectives: Geography: 2c), 3c), 6a) & 7a)

Main learning objective: To use maps and atlases accurately and to understand the hierarchy of settlements in a geographical context

Lesson plan ideas, activities and resource sheets

15 minutes

  • Discuss settlements in England and Wales and name the smallest settlement as a hamlet. Work up in size and make a list on the board with the children suggesting the answers (Hamlet, Village, Town, City, Capital City, County, Region, Country, Continent and The World). Think of examples of each classification.

  • Discuss what constitutes a place being a city and discuss the idea of needing a cathedral, despite many places with cathedrals not being a city and several cities being a city without a cathedral, eg Birmingham and Belfast.

  • Ensure the children know the county they live in and identify this on the sheet ‘4.1a The County we live in’.

  • Explain what a port is and what things are ideally required for shipping (sheltered water, deep water, road and rail transport links, local products to export, etc). Discuss the fact that not all ports are on the coast (i.e. Gloucester, Worcester, Manchester).

MAIN ACTIVITY: 20 minutes

  • Provide the pupils with the worksheet ‘4.1b Finding the ports of Britain’ and they must locate the main ports using an atlas or other secondary resources.

  • Early finishers could add some of the smaller ports.

PLENARY: 15 minutes

  • Show the worksheet ‘4.1b Finding the ports of Britain’ and go through the answers.

  • Conclude the lesson by identifying the ports of the Severn today (Collow Pill (Newnham), Sharpness and Avonmouth) and ports of yesteryear (Tewkesbury, Ashleworth, Gloucester, Minsterworth, Newnham, Bullo Pill, Purton, Gatcombe, Berkeley, Lydney, Cone Pill, Woolaston, Chepstow, Bristol).

Suggested extension activities or cross curricular links:

  • Use this for other counties in the UK.


4.1 Guidelines - Finding the ports of Britain

4.1a The County we live in

4.1b Finding the ports of Britain