“I have come so that you may have life and have it to the full.” John 10:10
The National Curriculum for History aims to ensure that all pupils:
- Gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world which helps to stimulate pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past;
• Are encouraged to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement;
• Begin to understand the complexity of people’s lives, the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups, as well as their own identity and the challenges of their time.
The history curriculum at St John’s Catholic Primary School is carefully planned and structured to ensure that current learning is linked to previous learning and that the school’s approaches are informed by current pedagogy. We want it to inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past and for our teaching to equip our children with the ability to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement. History helps us to understand the complexity of people’s lives, the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups. We hope that our curriculum will enable our children to gain a sense of their own identity within a social, political, cultural, religious and economic background.
Our Curriculum map is informed by the statutory and non-statutory requirements of the National Curriculum and is sensitive to children’s interests, as well as the context of the local area. History is taught in blocks throughout the year, so that children achieve depth in their learning and it is often linked to an overarching theme or topic of learning so that many cross-curricular opportunities for engagement and learning can be availed of. The key knowledge and skills that children acquire and develop throughout each block have been mapped to ensure progression year on year throughout the school. Each topic is introduced with reference to the chronology of previous topics (including those from previous years) through the explicit use of timelines. The KWL strategy (What I Know, What I would like to know and what I have learnt) is used to check existing knowledge at the beginning of each history topic and progress by the end of the learning sequence. Knowledge organisers are used so that key knowledge is constantly reviewed by the children and rigorously checked and consolidated by the teacher. Visits to the local area and use of artefacts from local museums support contextualised learning, as well as the acquisition of key knowledge and systematic development of key skills. The history curriculum is designed to ensure appropriate diversity in the significant figures that children learn about. Teachers’ cater for the varying needs of all learners, differentiating activities where necessary and as appropriate, and ensuring an appropriate level of challenge.
Outcomes in learning journals and across the curriculum, evidence our broad and balanced history curriculum and demonstrate the children’s acquisition of key knowledge and facts. By the end of year 6, children will have a chronological understanding of British history from the Stone Age to the present day and are able to draw comparisons and make connections between different time periods and their own lives. They will have a clear idea of how their studies of world civilisations and eras, such as that of ancient civilisations of Greece and the Egyptians, link back to British history and impact on their own existence. Emphasis is placed on ensuring that our children have acquired skills of analytical thinking and questioning, in addition to developing their curiosity to find out about the past. Children are then encouraged to use these skills across other areas of learning to allow them to continue to progress as they move away from primary education.
Examples of learning in KS1
Examples of learning in KS 2