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History

1

Intent

We aim to deliver a broad and balanced history curriculum which meets the objectives of the National Curriculum. We want to develop children’s interest in the past, arousing their curiosity and motivation to learn, in order to become confident and inquisitive learners.

Within our history lessons, we ensure there is a deep subject knowledge of local, British and World history that progresses from EYFS to Year 6 as well as a progressive sequence of skills which children develop over their time in school.

We aim for our children to possess a secure understanding of the chronology of significant events, ages and people within which the children can organise their knowledge of the past. This will then help them to recognise the impact of historical events on the development of society and the world we live in today.

We will equip children to develop and use their skills in historical enquiry, analysis, evaluation, and argument. Through investigation using primary and secondary sources such as pictures, stories, writing and artefacts we will encourage children to ask and answer questions about the past. Alongside this we aim to develop the children’s understanding that sources of information can have varying degrees of reliability and have been very much open to interpretation by different people at different times in the past.

Through our 4 golden themes of Lifestyle, Religion and Beliefs, Conflict and Controversy, and Key People and Places, we aim to teach children about commonalities and differences between different time periods and build up their knowledge in order to make their own comparisons and interpretations.

Whilst taking part in enquiries, children should be respectful of different cultures and their histories and understand that aspects of history can be viewed in different ways by different people. We want our children to develop a sense of identity through learning about the past.

Implementation

Our History curriculum is taught within 3 units per year for each year group. Within Early Years, History is introduced through ‘Understanding the World’ and has a main focus on the child’s personal history. Children are encouraged to talk about experiences that are familiar to them and how this may be different in the past. From Year 1 to Year 6 we use the Kapow scheme to deliver a broad, progressive series of units to develop the whole historian.

The scheme of work lays out the sequential steps to be taught so that new knowledge and skills build on what has been taught before and pupils can work towards clearly defined high quality outcomes. Each unit is introduced with reference to the chronology of previous topics including those from previous years meaning children have a good understanding of the history that has led to the unit they are about to study.

History is taught in discrete lessons which means children are able to secure their depth in their knowledge and skills over the duration of each of the units. Work is recorded in floor books in Reception and the early stages of Year 1 and then children move into their own history books for the rest of their time in school.

Each unit begins with a scroll at the start of their work which summarises the key knowledge to be learnt during that unit. Each child also has a list of key skills that they will be using in all 3 of their units across the year in their book. This way they can revisit particular skills several times and apply their learning to different units. Developing the use of the correct vocabulary in history is crucial and so key words are identified and listed on the scroll for each unit of learning. This is then used to assess knowledge and enables children to express and communicate their ideas and thoughts clearly and effectively.

Through using key disciplinary skills, we teach our children to ask questions, think critically, and evaluate evidence and arguments to enable them to develop perspective and judgment about the way the past is represented and the potential for bias in historical accounts.

Throughout the curriculum, children revisit important concepts in a number of different contexts through our 4 themes. This enables children to build on prior knowledge, deepen their contextual knowledge and make comparisons between units of history they have learnt.

Impact

By the time our pupils leave St Wilfrid’s, children have acquired all of the essential history skills and knowledge to support them in their future learning in key stage three and beyond. They demonstrate a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world and are increasingly aware of how historical events have shaped the world that they currently live in.

Children can explain the chronology of key events and are curious to know more about the past and ask perceptive questions. They have refined their historical skills, including identifying bias and recognising the validity of sources and are able to discuss and challenge each other's opinions on events in history.

As historians, children learn lessons from history to influence the decisions they make in their lives in the future. They can talk about our 4 golden themes in a range of different historical contexts and make comparisons between different periods of history using these themes.

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