At St Mary’s we believe that our History Curriculum will inspire and help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. Our teaching methods encourage students to think critically, weigh evidence, form opinions, develop perspective and judgement.
We aim to provide a high-quality history education for all our pupils. We want them to be able to make links between the past and our lives today as well as be able to identify some of the causes and consequences of historical events.
History is taught in blocks throughout the year, so that children achieve depth in their learning. At the start of the new topic of learning, children are provided with detailed knowledge organisers, which contain key facts, dates, and vocabulary that they are expected to master. In addition, we use the KWL strategy (‘what we know’, ‘what we would like to know’ and ‘what we have learnt’) questions to allow for students to inform teachers of their existing knowledge and express what they are hoping to discover. Class teachers can adjust lesson plans accordingly.
Class teachers’ plans outline the history units each year group will cover over the course of the academic year. Our long-term plans also include some of the non-statutory history topics and objectives. We have chosen to include other non-statutory objectives that help to build, deepen and complement the statutory aspects of our history curriculum.
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 and world 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. We also focus on inclusion and take in BAME cultures and civilisations and how people from BAME backgrounds have contributed to such historical events such as the world wars and advances in medicine.
When delivering our history curriculum we make links, when appropriate, to work in other subjects such as geography, English, R.E. and science. In a typical history lesson our pupils are provided with time to:
- review and consolidate previous knowledge
- discuss objectives, key vocabulary and success criteria
- identify and develop (build on) historical knowledge and key skills
- take part in independent and collaborative tasks
- self-evaluate and review their learning and that of others
Throughout the year we also provide opportunities for our pupils to increase their cultural capital by arranging educational visits to places of historical interest and importance, including museums and galleries. This is so our pupils are able to make sense of history and put periods within their historical contexts.
Our History curriculum is of high quality, demonstrates progression and well is sequenced to age related expectations. At St Mary’s we aim for the majority of our students to:
- reflect on standards achieved against planned outcomes
- have a secure knowledge of people, events and concepts of the historical period covered.
- build on and maintain a good understanding about how the world has changed over time
- demonstrate a growing knowledge and understanding of events in the past, historical interpretation and historical enquiry.
- be inspired by what they have learnt and continue to develop their love of history
- work collaboratively and independently to become more effective historians
- enrich their knowledge and understanding of a particular historical period through visits and visitors
- be able to discuss their learning