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St Thomas More Catholic Primary School

Inspiration, Celebration and Education

History

History at St. Thomas More Catholic Primary School

Intent

Our ‘Journey through time periods’ history curriculum has been designed to cover all of the skills, knowledge and understanding as set out in the National Curriculum. The National Curriculum states that ‘a high-quality history education will help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. It should inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past.’

We have created a curriculum that allows us to constantly revisit and embed prior learning as well as developing a chronological awareness of history through time, highlighting similarities and differences and exploring change.

 

Our curriculum aims to ensure that all children:

  • know and understand the history of these islands as a coherent, chronological narrative, from the earliest times to the present day: how people’s lives have shaped this nation and how Britain has influenced and been influenced by the wider world;
  • know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations; the expansion and dissolution of empires; characteristic features of past non-European societies; achievements and follies of mankind;
  • gain and deploy a historically grounded understanding of abstract terms such as ‘empire’, ‘civilisation’, ‘parliament’ and ‘peasantry’;
  • understand historical concepts such as continuity and change, cause and consequence, similarity, difference and significance, and use them to make connections, draw contrasts, analyse trends, frame historically-valid questions and create their own structured accounts, including written narratives and analyses;
  • understand the methods of historical enquiry, including how evidence is used rigorously to make historical claims, and discern how and why contrasting arguments and interpretations of the past have been constructed;
  • gain historical perspective by placing their growing knowledge into different contexts, understanding the connections between local, regional, national and international history; between cultural, economic, military, political, religious and social history; and between short- and long-term timescales.

 

(National Curriculum, 2014).

Implementation

To ensure high standards of teaching and learning in history at St Thomas More Catholic Primary School, we implement a curriculum that is progressive throughout the school.  We believe knowledge and skills are of equal value and importance.  All learning will start by revisiting prior knowledge. It will be scaffolded to support children to recall previous learning and make connections. The use of the ‘History Knowledge Bank’ will allow for this.  Staff will model explicitly the subject-specific vocabulary, knowledge and skills relevant to the learning to allow them to integrate new knowledge into larger concepts.  Teachers have been provided with a bank of progressive vocabulary to support this.

In EYFS, historical skills and understanding are taught through ‘Understanding the World’ and continuous provision.  In Key Stage 1, history is taught as part of a half-termly unit, focusing on knowledge and skills stated in the National Curriculum.  This is linked to our school values of Inspiration (Lives of significant individuals in the past that have contributed to national and international achievements), Education (Events beyond living memory that are significant nationally or globally) and Celebration (Significant historical events, people and places in own locality).  In Key Stage 2, history is taught as part of a four weekly unit, ensuring coverage of all key topic areas through the year.  This ensures diversity in our curriculum.  This knowledge is then revisited and built upon the following year.  The allows for a broad and rich knowledge based curriculum.  In Year 6, children are given the opportunity to delve deeper into a particular theme and explore this through the different time periods e.g. religion, children, education, clothing, homes etc.

Where appropriate subject lead and teachers will offer a wide range of extra-curricular activities, visits, trips and visitors to complement and broaden the curriculum, which are purposeful and link with the knowledge that will be taught in class.

 

Impact

The impact and measure of our curriculum is to allow children to become increasingly critical and analytical within their thinking. Making informed and balanced judgements based on their knowledge of the past.  Children will become increasingly aware of how historical events have shaped the world that they currently live in. They will be equipped with historical skills and knowledge that will enable them to be ready for the curriculum at Key Stage 3 and for life as an adult in the wider world.

 

We want the children to have thoroughly enjoyed learning about history, therefore encouraging them to undertake new life experiences now and in the future.

Our History Learning in action!

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