At St. Barnabas and St. Paul’s Primary School, we believe that a well-rounded History curriculum provides our children with an opportunity to gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. We have carefully designed our History curriculum so that children gain this knowledge as they progress through school. A high-quality History education helps pupils 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 knowledge and skills gained and developed in History are also transferrable to many other areas of the school curriculum including: Art, Literacy, Reading, Writing and Science.
Through our History curriculum, at St. Barnabas and St. Paul’s, we strive to inspire pupils’ curiosity and fascination about the past that will remain with them for their rest of their lives. Through the teaching of History, we aim to equip pupils to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments and develop perspective and judgement. Our aims are to fulfil the requirements of the National Curriculum for History by providing a broad, balanced and differentiated curriculum ensuring the progressive development of historical concepts, knowledge and skills.
At St Barnabas and St Paul’s Primary School, we intend to provide children with an exciting and high-quality History curriculum, in order to understand Britain’s past and the wider world (Primary National Curriculum in England, 2014). Through our carefully sequenced curriculum, we aim to develop a true love for History in each and every child, in order to inspire pupil’s curiosity and desire for knowledge that will remain with them for the rest of their lives.
Learning starts in the Foundation Stage with a curriculum based around quality texts. This allows us to focus on children’s knowledge of changes within their memories and the skills of knowing the differences between past and present. Building on this further in KS1, we focus on recent memories to events that are beyond memory through a 'book' based curriculum, improving children’s understanding and comprehension, as well as understanding key concepts of time.
Feeding into lower KS2, we carefully build on the children’s historical understanding through the progressive development of historical concepts and chronological understanding from Ancient History such as Ancient Egypt and the Romans. This allows children to develop skills of recognising and categorising features of key eras, thinking critically, weighing evidence and specialised skills of justifying and evaluating based on their own judgements. Following on from this, our intent in Upper KS2 allows children to embed chronology further by looking at modern history such as World War II. The repetition of skills allows children to develop a sense of time and view interconnections of civilisations.
To encompass our intention, with the use of our high-quality books used for planning and pleasure, our children will become increasingly confident in using subject specific vocabulary so that pupils develop a wider range of spoken language. Therefore, oracy, language development and reading are at the heart of our curriculum.
History teaching at St Barnabas and St Paul’s has a wide application to everyday life, teaching the children to enjoy learning about the past and to have a better understanding of the society in which they live.
The aims of teaching history in our school are:
• to inspire pupils’ curiosity to discover more about the past and to develop an understanding that enables them to enjoy all that history has to offer;
• to enable children to know about significant events in British history and to appreciate how things have changed over time;
• to develop a sense of chronology;
• to know and understand how the British system of democratic government has developed and contribute to a child’s citizenship education;
• to understand how Britain is part of a wider European culture and to study some aspects of European history;
• to have some knowledge and understanding of historical development in the wider world;
• to help children understand society and their place within it, so that they develop a sense of their cultural heritage;
• to develop in children the skills of enquiry, investigation, analysis, evaluation, debate, interpretation, problem solving and presentation.
· To equip children with the ability to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments and develop perspective and judgement through use of their History knowledge and understanding.
· To gain and deploy a historically grounded understanding of abstract terms such as ‘empire’, ‘civilisation’, ‘parliament’ and ‘peasantry’ and other age appropriate terms.
· 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 analysis.
Overall, the breadth of our History education, at our Church of England primary school, will equip our children with the cultural capital needed to become well-rounded and confident individuals who impact positively on society.
“The more you know about the past, the better prepared you are for the future.” – Theodore Roosevelt.