At Orchard Park Community Primary School, our high-quality history curriculum allows pupils to develop a curiosity, fascination and understanding of the world around them and their own heritage. From the start of their learning journey, pupils will develop a well-rounded knowledge of the past and its events, with intention to improve every child's understanding, becoming increasingly critical and analytical thinkers. Meaningful links throughout the history curriculum and with other subjects are formed in order to strengthen connections for all pupils.
The history curriculum enables our pupils to develop knowledge and skills, differentiate between source types, drawing on similarities and differences within a given period and across history previously taught. Pupils will be able to explain how interpretations in history may differ, asking their own historical themed questions to broaden their understanding and prior knowledge.
As a heritage school, we strive for children to take pride in knowing the importance of where our school is situated and where they live. Children will understand their local heritage and how it relates to past historical events. They will discover that although we are a new community we have a rich historical past liking back to the Iron Age and the Romans. Our local historic context is embedded in the school curriculum, aiming to engage parents, carers and the wider community in discovering the importance of where the school is built.
We want our pupils at Orchard Park Community Primary School to enjoy and have a love of learning for history. We strive to do this, not only through our experiences within the classroom setting, but through educational trips and visitors.
History at Orchard Park is taught through our topics over the year, so that children can achieve depth within their learning. The children understand that all events within history form a chronological timeline. The progression throughout the History Curriculum allows children to place historical eras previously taught on a timeline, building on their knowledge as move from Nursery to Year 6. As a staff, we have identified the key knowledge and skills of each topic, this is mapped out within the progression of skills document. Historical understanding, as well as children’s spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is further supported through the school’s topic-based curriculum. Children are also able to learn about careers related to history from members of the local and wider community through visitors to the school and during educational trips.
Learning within the history curriculum will also be supported through the use of knowledge organisers. This will enable learning to be scaffolded, providing all children with support to retain new facts and vocabulary in their long-term memory. Knowledge organisers will be used as an overview for pre-teaching, a guide to understand prior knowledge of objectives, key terminology and vocabulary taught whilst supporting home learning.
At the start of our history topics, children experience a ‘WOW Day/Super Start’. This is either a morning session or a full day. The aim of a WOW Day or Super Start is to capture the children’s love for learning and inspire them to discover and extend their subject knowledge. The day consists of a range of activities that incorporate different elements of the curriculum subjects. It allows teachers to gain an understanding of knowledge that children already know and gives the children an opportunity to think of questions that they would like to investigate during the half term. This helps to inform the programme of study and also ensures that lessons are pitched appropriately, taking into account children’s prior knowledge and starting points. Staff will use assessment for learning to ensure that lessons are targeted to meet the children’s needs and will help to plan for next steps.
A range of resources and artefacts will be used to teach the history topics throughout the year groups. These will also include bespoke resources from Heritage England, providing children with information about their local history.
Work produced is of good quality and demonstrates depth of knowledge and understanding that pupils have acquired as well as enquiry skills and vocabulary in an appropriate sequence. Topic books will show evidence of a broad and balanced history curriculum and demonstrate children’s acquisition of identified key knowledge. Children will show enjoyment for taking part in history lessons and look forward to finding out and discovering more. Half termly projects will be completed by children at home. These will be derived from the topic being taught that half term. Children then present these to the rest of the class before putting them on display in the corridor for all pupils at Orchard Park Community Primary School to see. As children progress throughout the school, they will develop a deep knowledge, understanding and appreciation of historical events and key changes in the past. There will be clear links that show the children how the past has impacted the present day.