The national curriculum for history aims to ensure that all pupils:
- Know and understand the history of these islands as a coherent, chronological narrative, from the earliest times to the present day.
- Know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations; the expansion and dissolution of empires and characteristic features of past non-European societies.
- 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 analyses.
- Understand the methods of historical enquiry, including how evidence is used rigorously to make historical claims, and discern how and why contrasting arguments and interpretations of the past have been constructed
History has always been held in high regard at St Peter’s which aims 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.
The history curriculum makes full use of the immediate and wider local area, enabling children to develop a deep understanding of the rich history of their locality. Topics are informed by the national curriculum and in the context of the local area – Chester, Port Sunlight, Birkenhead Priory, Birkenhead Park and Liverpool have been used for local studies and to bring history alive in an engaging and interactive way.
History is taught in blocks throughout the year, so that children achieve depth in their learning. Key knowledge and skills for each year group have been identified to ensure progression across the school. By the end of Year 6, children will be able to draw comparisons and make connections between different time periods and their own lives, as well as studying world history, such as the ancient civilisations of Greece and the Mayans, children will have a chronological understanding of British history from the Stone Age to the present day. There will be many opportunities for cross curricular outcomes in history with strong links between history and literacy, enabling further contextual learning. Art and DT will also be used within History topics.
The local area is utilised to achieve the desired outcomes, with extensive opportunities for trips to enhance and bring learning to life – Chester for the Romans, Liverpool for the Swinging 60s, Birkenhead Park for links to the Victorian era to name but a few.
Planning is informed by and aligned with the national curriculum. Staff have access to the Historical Association plans and resources, however, teacher’s lesson design is not limited by this. A number of other resources and planning aids support teachers and children in their learning. 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. Children demonstrate historical skills as well as showcasing learning through cross curricular areas. Children also record what they have learned comparative to their starting points at the end of every topic.
Emphasis is placed on analytical thinking and questioning which helps pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world and are curious to know more about the past. Through their study pupils learn to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement.