History Curriculum Statement
History has always been held in high regard at Barleyhurst Park Primary School. Topics are informed by the National Curriculum and are sensitive to children’s interests, as well as the context of the local area. The history curriculum at Barleyhurst is carefully planned and structured using Curriculum maestro, to ensure that current learning is linked to previous learning and that the school’s approaches are informed by current pedagogy. In line with the National Curriculum 2014, we aim 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.
History is taught in termly topics throughout the year, so that children achieve depth in their learning. The key knowledge and skills that children acquire and develop throughout each topic have been mapped to ensure progression between year groups throughout the school.
At the beginning of each new history related topic, teachers refer to timelines to develop children’s understanding of chronology. Each topic is introduced with reference to the chronology of previous topics (including those from previous years). A ‘Wow Starter’ is used to engage and excite pupils at the start of each term. Existing knowledge is also discussed and this process informs planning which is responsive to children’s interests.
Key knowledge is reviewed by the children and rigorously checked and consolidated by the teacher. By the end of year 6, children will have a chronological understanding of British history from the Stone Age to the present day. They are able to draw comparisons and make connections between different time periods and their own lives. Interlinked with this are studies of world history, such as the ancient civilisations of Greece and the Egyptians.
Cross curricular outcomes in history are specifically planned for and these are indicated on the school’s medium term plans. Visits are also planned to support every topic; which allows pupils to take part in three school trips each year. Our trips support contextualised learning, as well as the acquisition of key knowledge and systematic development of key skills.
Planning is informed by and aligned with the National Curriculum. In addition, staff have access to Curriculum Maestro plans and pupils are able to learn from meaningful resources. The Curriculum Maestro 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.
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) aims for all children in reception to have an ‘Understanding of the World; people and communities, the world and technology’ by the end of the academic year.
Outcomes of work are regularly monitored to ensure that they reflect a sound understanding of the key identified knowledge.
Outcomes in topic books evidence a broad and balanced history curriculum and demonstrate the children’s acquisition of identified key knowledge.
Emphasis is placed on analytical thinking and questioning and children demonstrate a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world, in addition to being curious to know more about the past. Through this study, pupils ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement.
The school aims for all pupils to have confidence in their knowledge, as well as skills to make decisions, self-evaluate, make connections, accept challenge and become lifelong aspirational learners. We expect to see the children demonstrating our vision in their own behaviour in history lessons throughout the school year. This will enable our children, including those with SEND, to make expected or better progress in history.