At MJS, we follow the National Curriculum for History.
Over the course of Key Stage 2, pupils will study the following units:
Our curriculum is developed so that children should leave school with:
History lessons aim to develop historical knowledge and concepts which are transferable to any period of history being studied and will equip children for future learning through a coherently planned sequence of lessons which progressively cover the knowledge and concepts required by the National Curriculum. These key historical disciplines and concepts, which are revisited throughout different units, are: Historical Interpretations; Historical Investigations; Chronological Understanding; Knowledge and Understanding of Events, People and Changes in the Past; Presenting, Organising and Communicating. Through our lessons, we intend to inspire pupils to develop a love of history and see how it has shaped the world they live in.
The intent in lower KS2 is that children can work in chronological order from prehistory (Stone Age to Iron Age) and ancient civilisations (Ancient Egypt) to 1066. Upper KS2 allows children to embed this sequence of chronology with a wider selection of ancient history such as Ancient Greece through to more modern history, including the Battle of Britain. This allows for children to truly develop and embed a sense of time and how civilisations were interconnected by building upon their prior learning. Children start to understand how some historical events occurred concurrently in different locations, e.g. Ancient Egypt and the Bronze Age.
By the end of Year 6, the pupils should have developed their knowledge of the story of Britain and some elements of history in the wider world, including ancient civilisations. They will have also developed their key disciplinary knowledge throughout their learning, which they will be able to apply to a range of further historical contexts.
Our curriculum is:
In order for children to know more and remember more in each area of History studied, there is a structure to the lesson sequence whereby prior learning is always considered and opportunities for revision and retrieval of facts and historical understanding are built into lessons. Through revisiting and consolidating substantive knowledge and concepts, our History lessons help children build on prior knowledge alongside introducing new knowledge and content. The introduction and revision of key vocabulary is built into each lesson. This vocabulary is then included in vocabulary triangles in children’s exercise books to ensure that children are allowed opportunities to repeat, revise and apply this knowledge.
Through enquiry, our pupils not only build their substantive knowledge and understanding but become increasingly adept at disciplinary thinking, conceptual understanding and the use of specialised vocabulary and technical terms. We structure learning in History to develop pupils’ chronological awareness over more extended periods of time. Our curriculum is ‘knowledge rich’ rather than content heavy as we recognise that if we attempt to teach historical topics in their entirety, we will create a very shallow learning experience for our pupils.
Learning and teaching in History is interactive and practical, allowing opportunities for pupils to work independently, in pairs and also in groups of various sizes both inside and outside of the classroom. Learning activities are varied to ensure that all pupils have opportunities to demonstrate their strengths. Similarly, we provide differentiated ways for pupils to record the outcomes of their work including concept mapping, annotated diagrams and the application of a wide range of writing genres. This will help knowledge become embedded and ‘sticky’ and ensure that our pupils can build on what they know and understand from one year to the next.
Each unit which forms our programme of learning and teaching in History sets out clear objectives for the pupils in terms of substantive and disciplinary knowledge and understanding. By the end of each unit, pupils should have developed a robust knowledge, which they can then use or build on in following learning. The outcomes of each unit of work serve to inform the teacher’s developing picture of the knowledge and understanding of each pupil and to plan future learning or address gaps in learning accordingly.