Thornton Dale C of E Primary School

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 Our Intent 

Our History curriculum is taught through a positive learning environment based on our Christian vision to feel safe, nurtured and valued. Children are able to take risks and feel happy and safe to do so. Our history curriculum ensures children can develop and then explore questions, to ignite and inspire their curiosity about the past. Our innovative approach to teachingis built on the foundations of a child-centred curriculum, where children’s interests, ideas and opinions are valued. These are enhanced through our focussed Learning Missions and the use of specialists and purposeful visits. Staff have the highest expectations of all children and previous learning is revisited to allow connections to be made and to enable children to remember more over time. Children are encouraged to have high expectations of themselves and believe that they can achieve the best that they can possibly achieve. Children are encouraged to take pride in their work and celebrate their achievements. Opportunities to display their work and articulate their learning allows them to use recently taught vocabulary and to explain their reasoning and deductions.  

  • Children become confident in the skills required by historians and can articulate the subject's distinctiveness. These include asking perceptive questions, thinking critically, weighing evidence, sifting arguments, and developing perspective and judgement. 
  • To build an understanding of chronology, ordering events, places and people.  
  • To extend their knowledge around significant events, people and places that have impacted Britain and the world over time.  
  • To help pupils to understand the complexity of people’s lives, the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups, as well as their own identity and the challenges of their time.  
  • To ensure that any gaps in learning, as a result of COVID, are closed and pupils meet at least age related expectations in History. 
  • To ensure that the lack of consistency in the coverage of the history curriculum is addressed. 


 Our Implementation 

  • In EYFS, History is taught through a play-based curriculum that encourages the children to talk and ask about the lives of people around them and develop their understanding of what the past is. This may be done through stories, through discussions around settings, characters and events that occur.  
  • History is taught through cross-curricular ‘Learning Cycles’. The curriculum is mapped from the N.C requirements in EYFS to Year 6.  
  • The curriculum progresses each year (See curriculum progression document) ensuring the development of knowledge, skills and vocabulary. 
  • Learning Cycles are taught through a variety of approaches, which may include teacher led sessions, or independent ‘focus tasks’ based on the National Curriculum objectives. The children may then have a choice of additional activities to further learning, practise retrieval and apply their knowledge to different contexts.  
  • Learning Cycles begin with 'planting the seed'  to capture children’s interests, engage them in their learning and end with 'harvesting the learning' to celebrate the learning journey. High quality core texts are used to further enhance the curriculum. 
  • The curriculum is designed to ensure that it links to real life, relevant local contexts so that historical learning is relevant for our children. 
  • Knowledge organisers are used to ensure key knowledge and vocabulary is introduced. Teachers ensure that knowledge organisers build on previous learning and that pupils retain this vocabulary.  
  • All pupils have access to higher order thinking tasks. 
  • History is a subject driver for at least two learning cycles per year.  
  • There are regular opportunities to discuss the past, plot events chronologically and compare/contrast what is happening now to what happened in the past. 
  • The Opportunities Pledge ensures that every child has access to a wide range of opportunities that enhance our innovative and creative approach to the curriculum. 
  • A range of high quality primary and secondary sources are used. 
  • Local resources and history studies engage and motivate pupils. 

The impact

  • Progressive and sequential history curriculum coverage is established 

  • A progression of skills is evident throughout all year groups 

  • Whole School Subject boards allow children to reflect on and remember their learning over the year. 
  • History show high quality, progressive learning.
  • Children speak enthusiastically about their history learning and the experiences they have been offered. 


 Our History Lead is Alice White