History Curriculum at Phoenix Community Primary School
At Phoenix Community Primary School, it is our intent that the history element of our curriculum will help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world and inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past. As our pupils progress, they will become equipped to ask questions, think critically, evaluate evidence, sift arguments, and develop judgements. We want our pupils to understand 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 pupils develop a secure knowledge that they can build on, our History curriculum is organised into a progression model that outlines the skills, knowledge and vocabulary to be taught in a sequentially coherent way. When covering each of these strands, the content will be carefully organised by each year group through a long term plan. Content knowledge, vocabulary and skills will then be planned for at a greater level of detail in the medium term plan. History is delivered through subject specific teaching organised into blocks under a theme. Meaningful links with other subjects are made to strengthen connections and understanding for pupils
History is taught through topic work. Topics are taught on a two year rolling cycle so every child visits each topic once. This also allows teachers to work together across year groups to support planning, resources and trips. Teaching history within topics means learning is delivered within a relevant context and builds on prior learning helping children make links and make progress.
Our curriculum prioritises:
- Early and secure literacy skills centred around rich language development, oracy (expression through speech)
- Reading, because this is what our pupils need.
- Pupils at all stages are given the opportunity and are expected, to present their learning in front of other pupils
- The use of subject specific vocabulary embed understanding and knowledge.
All learning will start by revisiting prior knowledge. This will be scaffolded to support children to recall previous learning and make connections. Staff will model explicitly the subject-specific vocabulary, knowledge and skills relevant to the learning to allow them to integrate new knowledge into larger concepts.
History is taught through topic work. History has a focus 3 terms in each academic year and each term has a substantive theme. These substantive themes include; Power & Empire, Travel & Change and Victory & Defeat. This also allows children to build on their knowledge of these themes year on year and prepare our learners to be secondary ready. Our historians will be given a variety of experiences both in and out of the classroom where appropriate to create memorable learning opportunities and to further support and develop their understanding.
Children are assessed within the lesson through questioning and observations with teachers making notes and changes to next lessons as they evaluate learning. We have developed a progression document with clearly identified development in concepts and vocabulary as well as historical skills. Teachers use this document to assess pupils' learning before, during and after a topic recording the outcomes for the subject leader. Pupils assess what they know at the start of a topic and what they have learned by the end using strategies such as mind mapping, knowledge grids and through oracy lessons. Floor books are used to gather evidence of the children’s knowledge and are recapped through the topic and throughout the year. Assessment is gathered through the year using the media platform SeeSaw as well as through the children’s books and the class’ floor book.