History Intent, Implementation and Impact
History Curriculum Aims & Rationale
The national curriculum for history aims to ensure that all pupils:
At Sacred Heart Primary School our intent is to provide a high-quality history education, which ensures depth and breadth and teaches knowledge and skills progressively, providing plenty of opportunities for children to build upon and embed previous knowledge. Through discreet history lessons, our curriculum aims to ignite children’s curiosity about the past in Britain and the wider world. Through finding out about how and why the world, our country, culture and local community have developed over time, children understand how the past influences the present. Children understand that through history, we can learn about how decisions can affect our own futures and those of the world. Teaching equips pupils to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh source material and develop perspective and judgement.
Children study termly themes to allow time for depth of understanding. Each theme has a key history or geography driver and is centred around ‘Big Questions’, which are used to assess children’s knowledge. Our curriculum teaches both the knowledge, skills and vocabulary that children need to be successful historians. The aim of the Key Stage One curriculum is to develop and enhance children’s basic skills within History, building upon children’s learning and experiences from early years and equipping them with the essential knowledge and skills to thrive within Key Stage Two. Within Year One, the children focus on developing their knowledge of their personal history and local area, researching and asking questions before moving on to learn about historical figures beyond living memory and significant British events. Within Year Two, the children research historical figures and significant events beyond living memory, consider how past societies differ from Britain today, identify some historical sources of evidence and develop their knowledge of chronology. This lays the foundations of historical skills and knowledge before children move onto Key Stage Two, where they study whole time periods and past civilisations in greater depth. The programme of study in Key Stage Two is sequenced chronologically to allow children to build an ongoing timeline and a coherent understanding of how life in Britain and the wider world has changed and developed over time. Previous learning is constantly revisited to ensure children have a secure knowledge. The curriculum has also been sequenced to allow for more mature topics e.g. the Holocaust or the Industrial Revolution to be studied when the children have the required prerequisite of skills and emotional resilience.
Following the mapping out of topics in accordance with our rationale, we have developed specific skills progression grids for each curriculum subject. For History, these are divided into the categories of ‘Chronology’, ‘Investigating and Interpreting the Past’, ‘Building a Knowledge of World History’ and ‘Communicating Historically’. Skills within each area, build sequentially. Every history topic is enriched by visits from experts or members of the public e.g. a zoom call with a Holocaust survivor in Year 6; and opportunities to visit museums, stately homes or areas of historical significance e.g. Stratford Upon Avon. Enrichment opportunities are carefully mapped against our Romero Charter to ensure that all children are accessing a wide range of experiences to help them develop both personally and as a learner.
Upon leaving our school at the end of Key Stage 2, our pupils should have developed a secure knowledge and understanding of historical figures, events and societies from the historical periods they have studied. They should be able to think critically, evaluate source materials and communicate confidently both orally and in their writing. Through in depth study of the Big Questions, children should be able to think independently, debate and reflect on their own opinions and the opinions of others. Furthermore, as a consequence of inspiring and engaging lessons, pupils should have developed a passion for history and a genuine curiosity about both the past and the world around them.