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History

History Intent Statement

Intent
At Mill Lane Primary School, it is our intent that the history element of our curriculum will help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world and inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past.

Our starting point for the History curriculum was ensuring it meet the needs of our diverse school community.  As a school, we have a large proportion of children who are EAL, an above average percentage of SEND and have a highly deprived catchment area.  Being mindful of the schools priority to promote aspiration and inspiration for all pupils, we used our local area and local historical figures to show how everyone, no matter what their background might be can achieve their goals and dreams.  With this in mind, we started with the National Curriculum statements are transferred the these into long-term plans with a huge focus on including links to our local area thus engaging and meeting the needs of our pupils.

Our long-term plan sets out objectives which link and build on prior knowledge and understanding. These identify a ‘golden thread’ of learning, which is built upon in our spiral curriculum, where children build upon and develop their previous knowledge, skills and understanding.  The teaching of specific historical vocabulary is continually embedded, reinforced and revised throughout all lessons, as our History focus flows through other subjects.

Where possible the long-term plan follows a chronological pathway, especially in KS2.  The exceptions for this are the more abstract topics, for example, the Mayans, which we have delayed until Year 6 when have secured a timeline of events and are able to place new learning within this. 

Implementation

Staff are aware and follow the long-term plan for History.  They know precisely what needs to be taught and when. The best quality of education is ensured throughout all Key Stages through effective termly monitoring of books, learning walks, and pupil and teacher voice.

This robust approach has ensured the quality of teaching in History is at least good across all Key Stages.  Teachers are aware of how to encourage an enquiry based style of learning, even with young children.  In EYFS and KS1, children are encouraged to see the link between their own lives and the time or event they are studying.  As children progress through school, they tackle problems and key questions linked to their specific topic.  Ultimately, we encourage pupils to work collaboratively, developing research skills, and acquiring critical thinking and reasoning skills, as they analyse a range of sources of evidence.  As a school, emphasis is placed upon enquiry-based teaching, which supports and embeds our children’s skills and ability to interpret and analyse relevant evidence from historical events.

The children in our nurture class are taught using their own personalised curriculum.  They access a hands-on curriculum that follows the thread of the whole school planning.  Their work is differentiated following assessments using PIVATs and personal assessments. 

Impact

Lesson observations and learning walks and have evidenced that teachers are providing a broad and balanced history curriculum.  Book scrutinies show that children can demonstrate that they are acquiring the key knowledge identified on the long-term plans and that they reflect on their learning from the previous lesson by responding to marking.  Pupil voice reflects the growing chronological and historical understanding children require to use skills and vocabulary across the subject.

At the end of each term, teachers use their judgements to grade the children on the work completed.  This data is analysed termly by the subject leaders. If necessary, any disparities are addressed by the subject lead through further CPD if necessary.

Analysis by the subject leader has enabled a consistency in approach to the teaching of history across school. This is evidenced through the monitoring of children’s books and through termly conversations with pupils.

A comprehensive list of educational visits and experiences helps children to develop a love for history.  Teachers ensure that children understand how history can be used in future careers and learning.  As a school, our long-term approach to history helps our pupils to ensure a wider level of understanding of the world around them.  Children understand cultural and religious diversity and can see historically how our world has been moulded by significant historical events that we study as a school.