The Woodfield History Curriculum
At Woodfield, we believe that history education should inspire children’s passion, enthusiasm and curiosity about the past. It is an interesting and exciting subject which helps us to understand about other people’s lives and the process of change. It also enables us to make sense of the wider world. History tells us why we live the way we do and forms part of our identity. Teaching history should equip pupils with knowledge about Britain’s past and the wider world, ask perceptive questions, think critically, sift arguments and weigh evidence. We aim to inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. History draws on other areas of the curriculum, for example using maths skills to understand a time line, scientific enquiry skills to research historical events and literacy skills to communicate ideas. This enables children to apply their learning, knowledge and skills in a cross curricular way.
As Historians, we want the children to:
- Develop their knowledge of people, events and contexts in history from a range of historical periods
- Work with a range of historical evidence and sources to find out about the past
- Ask questions about the past
- Think critically about history and communicate their ideas
- Develop a passion, enthusiasm and curiosity about the past
- Know that the past can be interpreted in different ways
Throughout all of the history curriculum, children are expected to use our ‘Learning Powers’. For example, when looking at historical sources the children will need to be curious and to use co-operative learning. They will also need to be reflective about how they have worked as historians and identify ways in which they could improve. By using our ‘Learning Powers’ in history, as we do throughout the curriculum, we aim for the children to become independent learners and to be able to explore the possible answers.
The history curriculum at Woodfield has been designed to ensure it links closely to the National Curriculum. Long term plans and progression grids support teachers in the planning and teaching of history.
Our curriculum sets out a clear breadth of topics. In EYFS this is rooted in children’s everyday experiences. As they move into years one and two, they start to look at famous people such as Neil Armstrong, Louis Braille and Mary Anning. Children also learn about historical events for example The Gunpowder Plot and changes within living memory by looking at old toys and inventions. As they progress into KS2, they look at periods of history such as The Ancient Egyptians, The Anglo-Saxons and The Roman Empire. Our Long Term Plan gives an overview of these topics.
Our curriculum is also underpinned by developing key skills and concepts that, as historians, children should understand and confidently develop. We return to these again and again across each year group. These include:
- Investigating the past and interpreting evidence
- Developing an overview of world history
- Understanding chronology
- Communicating historical information
- Developing a vocabulary ladder related to time
Our History progression map document gives an overview of these skills and concepts.
Special Educational Needs and History
Effective quality first teaching is the key to enabling all children to participate and develop their historical knowledge and skills. Differentiation within lessons is a vital component to ensure that a balance of support and challenge is achieved by all learners.
Challenge and support specific to history may include:
- Varying the types and number of artefacts and sources used
- First hand experiences
- Pre-teaching of more advance vocabulary
- Providing picture clues or sentence stems
Pupils not secure within a lesson sequence are noted and adjustments made to the differentiation or level of support given. Similarly, added challenge is given to those pupils requiring it. This may be through questioning or the use of written work.
Throughout each lesson formative assessment takes place and feedback is given to the children through written or verbal feedback (in line with our marking policy), close the gap and extension tasks.
In written work, letter formation and grammar is corrected in line with the marking policy and children in Year 2 are encouraged to check and correct their work using purple polishing pens.
Through the explicit teaching of history skills, both teachers and learners assess their skills continuously throughout the lesson. To help children get a deep level of understanding, historical skills and concepts are revisited, for example in year 1 children will have a basic understanding of chronology at an age appropriate level but by revisiting this they will have a deeper level of understanding by year 2. Quizzes, book looks, learning walks and pupil voice interviews are used by the subject lead to monitor this.
End of Key Stage Expectations
By the end of Key Stage One, as historians, children will be able to:
- describe where key historical people and events fit into a chronological framework
- talk about and describe changes to the way we live within living memory
- discuss significant events and people beyond living memory
- have a secure understanding of key historical vocabulary
- ask and answer questions using historical sources
- explain how we find out about the past