At Vine Tree Primary we shape our history curriculum to ensure it is fully inclusive to every child. Our aims are to fulfil the requirements of the National Curriculum for History; providing a broad, balanced and differentiated curriculum that encompasses the British Values throughout; ensuring the progressive development of historical concepts, knowledge and skills; and for the children to study life in the past.
We aim for a high quality history curriculum which should inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about Britain’s past and that of the wider world. History is about real people who lived, and real events which happened in the past. History is concerned with sequence, time and chronology and is the study of evidence about the past; it gives us a sense of identity, set within our social, political, cultural and economic relationships. History fires the children’s curiosity about the past in Britain and the wider world and plays an essential part in preparing us for living and working in the contemporary world. Pupils consider how the past influences the present, what past societies were like, how these societies organised their politics, and what beliefs and cultures influenced people’s actions. As they do this, children develop a chronological framework for their knowledge of significant events and people. They see the diversity of human experience, and understand more about themselves as individuals and members of society. What they learn can influence their decisions about personal choices, attitudes and values. In history, children find evidence, weigh it up and reach their own conclusions. To do this they need to be able to research, sift through evidence, and debate their point of view – skills that are prized in adult life.
Our teaching equips pupils with knowledge about the history of Britain and how it has influenced and been influenced by the wider world; know and understand about significant aspects of the history of the wider world like ancient civilisations and empires; changes in living memory and beyond living memory; learn about the lives of significant people of the past; understand the methods of historical enquiry and be able to ask and answer questions. We want our children to enjoy and love learning about history by gaining this knowledge and skills, not just through experiences in the classroom, but also with the use of fieldwork and educational visits.
In ensuring high standards of teaching and learning in history, we implement a curriculum that is progressive throughout the whole school. History is taught as part of a half-termly or termly topic, focusing on knowledge and skills stated in the National Curriculum. At Vine Tree, we ensure that history has the same importance given to it as the core subjects, as we feel this is important in enabling all children to gain ‘real-life’ experiences. We use a progressive knowledge-based curriculum and ensure our units are planned to include specific key questions.
Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)
In Early Years the curriculum is carefully planned to provide all children with a wider understanding of the world around them. Children begin to make sense of their own family history and use their own life experiences to build a sense of the past and present. Timelines are introduced of their time in Reception so all children gain an understanding of the passing of time and that events that are relevant to them can be ordered chronologically. Children also understand the past through settings, characters and events encountered in books as well as having varied opportunities to explore and role play different roles within society.
The impact and measure of this is to ensure that children at Vine Tree Primary are equipped with historical skills and knowledge that will enable them to be ready for the curriculum at Key Stage 3 and for life as an adult in the wider world. Carefully planned entry and exit tasks allow for formative and summative assessment learning opportunities and provide the opportunity for children to demonstrate what they know.