Subject Lead: Mrs Jo Hartwell [email protected]
The curriculum for History at All Souls builds upon the programme of study outlined in the National Curriculum for England which can be found here.
What is our vision for History at All Souls?
At All Souls’ Catholic Primary School, we believe that History is an important way to develop pupils’ curiosity and enquiry as they learn about and from the past to become curious and active global citizens. As a subject, History is uniquely positioned to enable children to develop an awareness of time and chronology, through gaining a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s history, their locality and the history of the wider world. In order to become historians, children need to be regularly exposed to relevant and significant sources: primary sources are used to encourage pupils to evaluate and form their own opinions whereas secondary sources enable and facilitate children’s questioning of reliability – a skill so crucial in our modern era. We believe that children of all abilities and needs can flourish in History due to the ability to tailor the approach to teaching and learning in a unique, multi-sensory and enquiry-driven style. Through drama, debate, discussion, immersive experiences and the use of artefacts history should be brought to life for children. By having an understanding of the concept of change over time, we hope that All Souls’ children reflect on how the past affects the present and use this to inform their actions as Catholics in today’s world which is as rich in diversity as its past. Ultimately, children should leave All Souls’ inspired by the History curriculum that they have experienced and passionate to know more, remember more and enquire more about the past as they enter Key Stage 3.
How do we achieve this vision?
Our History curriculum provides complete coverage of the National Curriculum programmes of study for Key Stages 1 and 2. A clear, deliberately planned curriculum map, based upon Rising Stars History ensures that pupils gain a coherent knowledge of Britain’s history, our locality of Coventry and the history of the wider world.
Throughout the academic year, children in each year group engage in three discrete History-themed units, delivered in half-termly blocks, alternating with units from our Geography curriculum. During these units, weekly lessons provide children with opportunities to learn more and remember more, through the regular revisiting of prior learning, the introduction of new vocabulary and knowledge and opportunities to follow lines of enquiry to progressively become more skilful historians. This progression of skills focusses on children’s historical knowledge, concepts and enquiry and is broken down into small steps within the school’s History Progression Framework to allow all children to make progress and succeed. Children’s work completed within History lessons is documented and celebrated within their humanities exercise books.
Teachers are given flexibility in their timetabling of History, recognising that different units, concepts or lines of enquire are best approached in different ways: some concepts or knowledge fit the ‘traditional’ hour-long lesson approach whereas others may need longer or shorter amounts of time to enable children to achieve the desired outcomes.
Where possible, learning within the classroom is enhanced by educational visits within the local or regional areas or through the invitation of visitors into school. These vary from year to year, depending upon availability and specific cohorts but have, in recent times, included visiting local area sites such as the War Memorial Park, Coventry Transport Museum, Coventry Cathedral and Lunt Roman Fort, and those further afield such as the Black Country Museum, Harvington Hall and the Heights of Abraham. We feel incredibly fortunate to live in an area that is so rich and diverse in heritage and history.
Teachers look for opportunities to immerse children into history through themed days where we role play and place ourselves in the shoes of those who have walked before us, imagining and experiencing a day in their life. Within lessons carefully sourced artefacts, rich use of multimedia resources and deliberately-designed activities engage children creating a sense of awe and wonder. Purposeful cross-curricular links ensure that the knowledge and skills gained within History lessons are enriched through opportunities within the art and design, computing, design technology and English curriculum.