History Curriculum Statement
History has always been held in high regard at St Thomas’s School and we have a key focus which links to the curriculum theme of ‘Where are we going and who will we meet?’. The history curriculum at St Thomas’s makes full use resources within the immediate and wider local area enabling children to develop a deep understanding of the rich history of their locality. This will maximise the outcomes for every child so that they know more, remember more and understand more.
Topics are informed by the national curriculum and are sensitive to children’s interests, as well as the context of the local area. The history curriculum at St Thomas’s is carefully planned and structured to ensure that current learning is linked to previous learning and that the school’s approaches are informed by current pedagogy. In line with the national curriculum 2014, the curriculum at St Thomas’s aims to ensure that all pupils;
History can be taught in blocks throughout the year, or weekly depending on the teacher’s preference. The ultimate aim, to ensure as many children as possible achieve greater depth in their learning. Teachers have identified the key knowledge and skills of each topic and consideration has been given to ensure progression across topics throughout each year group across the school. By the end of year 6, children will have a chronological understanding of British history from the Stone Age to the present day. They are able to draw comparisons and make connections between different time periods and their own lives. Interlinked with this are studies of world history, such as the ancient civilisations of Greece and the Islamic civilisation.
Cross curricular outcomes in history are specifically planned for, with strong links between the history curriculum and literacy lessons enabling further contextual learning. The local area is also fully utilised to achieve the desired outcomes, with opportunities for learning outside the classroom embedded in practice. Planning is informed by and aligned with the national curriculum. Consideration is given to how greater depth will be taught, learnt and demonstrated within each lesson, as well as how learners will be supported in line with the school’s commitment to inclusion. Outcomes of work are regularly monitored to ensure that they reflect a sound understanding of the key identified knowledge. Within our knowledge-rich approach, there is a strong emphasis on people and the community of our local area.
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) follows the ‘Development Matters in the EYFS’ guidance which aims for all children in reception to have an ‘Understanding of the World; people and communities, the world and technology’ by the end of the academic year.
Outcomes in topic and literacy books, evidence a broad and balanced history curriculum and demonstrate the children’s acquisition of identified key knowledge. Children have opportunities to review the agreed successes at the end of each session and are actively encouraged to identify their own target areas, with support from their teachers. Children also use KWL grids to record what they have learned comparative to their starting points at the end of every topic.
Emphasis is placed on analytical thinking and questioning which helps pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world and they are curious to know more about the past. Through this study pupils learn to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement. We also provide further relevant and contextual learning through engaging members of the community in developing the children’s learning and providing positive role models for children to learn from.
School Trips and Visits
School trips and visits are important to bring history to life for children. We try to ensure the children have as many opportunities as possible.