Our History Subject Lead is Miss Smith
History is a complex subject that helps teach children about their current place in time. By learning about history in primary school, children gain a better understanding of key concepts such as cause/consequence, problem solving, critical thinking, imagination, empathy, and reasoning. Chard has a rich local history that children should gain a good understanding of while at primary school. Primary level history should also extend children's knowledge of the past beyond 'local' boundaries. By learning about world history, children gain an understanding that chronologies vary, and that decisions taken in the past have real world consequences still felt today.
Children to understand History as a chronological narrative.
Children to have an understanding of historical concepts, such as change and continuity.
Children to have an understanding of how evidence can be used to answer historical enquiries
History at Manor Court Community Primary is taught with an emphasis on links to previous learning before building in new learning. History is taught with a focus on thematic topics rather than purely isolated time periods. This helps to build in a sense of chronology naturally, and recaps this regularly. There is clear progression in key history concepts across the year groups, with emphasis on revisiting and building on skills as well as knowledge. History is also taught with a focus on local history in the Autumn term, British history in the Spring term and world history in the Summer term for all year groups. Children acquire History skills through each lesson having a skills-based objective. These skills are recapped throughout the year and have a focus on using sources. By the end of primary school, our aim is for children to have a secure grasp of key historical concepts such as chronology, cause/consequence and provenance of sources. Children should also be making links across the curriculum, and across themes/topics studied in History in previous terms/years. Progression can support a greater understanding of concepts and vocabulary within History. For example, terms used in Foundation stage (before, now, after) can be replaced by more sophisticated language/accuracy as children move up through school. The History plans show progression and demonstrate a deepening understanding of how chronology and themes studied link together. For example, children in Year 6 have a chronological understanding of the topics they have covered during primary and should be making links across topics.
In Early Years and Foundation Stage, children are taught about understanding the world and this is an early learning goal. During EYFS, children will talk about the lives and roles of people around them. They compare things in the past to how they are now, drawing on their own experiences and on texts they have shared, and they use the settings, characters and events they encounter in these stories to develop their understanding of the past.
In KS1, as well as having focuses each term (local history/British history/world history), children are taught about changes in living memory and events beyond this as well as the lives of significant individuals. In KS1, sources are used to draw out information about the past/compare with the present. The nature of sources can demonstrate progression e.g., photos, pictures, writing, diary entries, letters, reports, as well.
In KS2, Children are taught to question historical sources as they move through school and develop critical thinking skills (e.g. Who made this? Why was this made?). As well as having focuses each term (local history/British history/world history), children are taught topics such as the Roman Empire, Ancient Greece, WW2, Margaret Bonfield, as well as a local history studies.
History skills are taught throughout the school and are built on each year. Children are taught how to investigate and interpret the past, to understand chronology and to communicate historically throughout their time in primary school. Progression is clear within this. For example, in Year 1 investigating and interpreting the past involves children observing and handling evidence to ask questions about the past. Whereas, in Year 6 this involves children selecting suitable sources and reasoning their answers.
History is monitored and evidenced through book work and lesson observations. Each term, books are checked for progression and evidence. This is as well as lesson observations being carried out and planning being checked. History books clearly demonstrate that key concepts and knowledge is being learnt/retained and that children are developing their skills through enquiry and source-based work. There is a range of activities in books, that are all history focused. Teachers plan for their year groups following the NC. The long-term History plan for the whole-school ensures children can link together their learning chronologically and thematically. A skills sheet is highlighted which tracks which skills have been taught.
Through careful monitoring of progress made throughout lessons and the outcome of work produced, additional support is offered to those who are finding a particular concept or skill difficult. These can take place when appropriate, whether that is within the lesson or separately. Those who have understood concepts more easily will be given additional challenges to progress to, applying their skills in a variety of contexts and developing their creativity and independence further.
Our aim is for all children to have an understanding of History as a chronological narrative, of historical concepts and of the use of evidence within History. Teachers differentiate all lessons, adapting them according to their class needs. Teachers may use small group work and extra adult support to work with children with additional needs. An enquiry framework means that most topics are accessible to all children and resources can be picked carefully to ensure they are accessible. Teachers are also able to scaffold work so that children can draw independent conclusions based on evidence.