The history curriculum is designed to ensure appropriate diversity in the significant figures that children learn about.
At Bromet Primary School we thoroughly enjoy and engage well in our history topics, through a range of mediums with the aim to encourage inquisitive learners and inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past. At Bromet, we believe “a high-quality history education will help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world” (National Curriculum).
We cover various topics, from learning our personal and family history to the Victorians and so on. This is necessary, as history helps to develop the understanding of “process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups” (National Curriculum). We also promote history through the use of our class blogs, to showcase and celebrate our learning. Additionally, we provide relevant cross-curricular links with the core and foundation subjects, as it is important to widen the children’s learning to develop essential enquiry skills. Our lessons are centred around a key question to encourage the children's curiosity and ensure they are coming up with their own opinions alongside their foundational understanding of a topic. We use (and expect the children to use) a high level of historical vocabulary within our lessons to develop the rhetoric of all learners including vulnerable groups and children with EAL.
We believe that the implementation of successful history teaching is essential to inspire a love of learning and encourage a diverse understanding of different cultures and heritage. Lessons between year groups and within each class are progressive, meaning that over time children deepen their understanding of local history and that of the wider world. Research and the use of historical enquiry develops inquisitive learners who take on the role of historians and critically evaluate their findings.
Rationale of our Chronology Curriculum
At Bromet we begin our understanding of chronology in EYFS; the youngest children need to start with now and work backwards. They look at the changes within living memory, relating life now to how they have changed throughout their life as well as making family trees and simple timelines. These ideas are brought to life with linked texts. Vocabulary plays a crucial part in the teaching and learning within EYFS in developing children's awareness of historical concepts such as time, chronology and placing oneself in a timeline (yesterday, today, tomorrow etc).
KS1 builds on this by also looking at the local history of where they live so that it is the most relevant to the children's lives. In Year 1 and 2, our children are more able to understand beyond living memory so can go back further in time. They develop the idea of chronology from learning about The Great Fire of London, Remembrance and Guy Fawkes etc. The children finish KS1 with a solid understanding of why we study history - to remember these significant events and individuals from a long time ago and their relevance today. This further develops a concrete understanding about chronology, in preparation for KS2.
In KS2 we map the curriculum by starting with with the earliest times. We start with a study of early Britain, before looking at the four earliest civilisations (which were at the same time as the Bronze Age). At the start of a new unit, the topic is situated within its correct time period and the children are encouraged to relate their new learning with civilisations they have learnt about from the same era, around the world. As the children move into upper KS2, we study a unit over a long arc of time, encouraging the children's understanding of how the chronology of the period they are studying intertwines with that of the rest of the world. We explicitly teach in chronology in KS2 to make the concepts easier to explore and to allow the children to carve out their own learning journey through the ages. The NC states that children should "understand historical concepts such as continuity and change, cause and consequence, similarity, difference and significance, and use them to make connections, draw contrasts, analyse trends" and these come through in all aspects of our curriculum and through our Enquiry based Scheme of Work.
The following images reflect just some of our history learning!
We focus a lot on pupil voice and provide the children the opportunity to express their ideas and understanding.
"History is about the past and learning about important people, like Florence Nightingale. I enjoy learning about famous people and looking at pictures from a long time ago." (Year 2 pupil)
"I love learning about the past and finding out about things that were different - like laws. I really like history trips as well!" (Year 4 pupil)
“I like history because you learn about all of the different cultures and their past. I also like that you learn all about how people learnt in the past, and how different the learning system is now.” (Year 6 pupil)