‘’The more you know about the past, the better prepared you are for the future’’– Theodore Roosevelt
At Ann Edwards Primary School, children are taught about key historical events from Britain’s past as well as the wider world showing respect towards how these have influenced our lives today. We provide a broad and differentiated curriculum that fulfils the requirements of the National Curriculum for History and beyond, ensuring the development of historical concepts, knowledge and skills; and for the children to study life in the past. When the children first start school, they build a solid foundation of knowledge that is developed through learning and understanding key vocabulary related to time that they continue to build on throughout their time at Ann Edwards Primary School. We encourage children to persevere with their historical knowledge and to use what they have learned from the past to ensure that we make a better future for all.
In EYFS, history is taught as the Early Learning Goal (ELG) ‘Past and Present’ which involves children talking about the lives of people around them, about the past from stories and as well as look at similarities and differences. In Key Stage One, children are taught to develop an awareness of the past, to identify similarities and differences of life in different periods, to use a wide historical vocabulary and to use sources to show their understanding of key events. They also learn to understand how we find out about the past and to ask and answer questions. In Key Stage 2, children are then taught a range of topics from the Iron age to World War 2 that deepen their understanding of chronological understanding; Historical Understanding; Historical Enquiry; Interpretations of History; Organisation and Communication. They are encouraged to think and behave as historians by exploring different types of historical sources and by promoting thoughtful discussions about key events. The children are encouraged to use key historical vocabulary in every lesson from Early Years to Year 6.
We ensure that we link the learning in history to other subjects such as reading, writing and maths. For example, Key Stage 2 learn about roman numerals in maths and all year groups use key historical texts within their English lessons. ‘Vlad and the Great Fire’ is a very popular book in year 1 and 2!
To install a love of history, we encourage the use of hook days, trips and visitors to make history come alive through immersive experiences that all pupils will remember. We design our history curriculum to make full use of resources within the immediate and wider local area enabling children to develop a deep understanding of the rich history of their locality. Some excellent examples of this are our local historical studies of the Roman Villas in Chedworth to the exploration of Edward Wilson from Cheltenham.
The overarching aim for History in our school is to ensure that pupils are given opportunities to learn and develop an interest and understanding about the life of people who lived in the past. We teach children a sense of chronology, and, through this, they develop a sense of identity, and a cultural understanding based on their historical heritage. Thus, they learn to value their own and other people’s cultures in modern multi-cultural Britain and, by considering how people lived in the past, they are better able to make their own life choices today. In our school, history makes a significant contribution to citizenship education by teaching about how Britain developed as a democratic society. We teach children to understand how events in the past have influenced our lives today; we also teach them to investigate these past events and, by so doing, to develop the skills of enquiry, analysis, interpretation and problem-solving.
Our objectives in the teaching of history are:
- to foster in children an interest in the past, and to develop an understanding that enables them to enjoy all that history has to offer;
- to enable children to know about significant events in British history, and to appreciate how things have changed over time;
- to develop a sense of chronology;
- to know and understand how the British system of democratic government has developed and, in so doing, to contribute to a child’s citizenship education;
- to understand how Britain is part of a wider European culture, and to study some aspects of European history;
- to have some knowledge and understanding of historical development in the wider world;
- to help children understand society and their place within it, so that they develop a sense of their cultural heritage;
- to develop in children the skills of enquiry, investigation, analysis, evaluation and presentation.