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History at Widmer End Combined School

 

Intent:

At Widmer End Combined School, we believe that through the delivery of high quality history lessons throughout the school, we will inspire children to become curious and passionate about the past, encouraging them to think and act as historians. In doing so, they will develop their understanding of the importance, relevance and influence of historical events upon our modern day lives. Children’s learning will be linked to a range of exciting and engaging topics designed to enable children to revisit, investigate and interpret the past. They will develop an ability to understand chronology and build an overview of Britain's past as well as that of the wider world. To encourage children on their journey to becoming active and engaged historians we will support them in developing the following essential skills, knowledge and characteristics:

 

  • An excellent knowledge and understanding of people, events and contexts from a range of historical periods, including significant events in Britain's past.
  • The ability to think critically about history and communicate ideas confidently to a range of audiences.
  • The ability to cooperate, support and challenge their own and others ‘ views using historical evidence from a range of sources.
  • The ability to think, reflect, debate, discuss and evaluate the past by showing empathy for others, formulating and refining questions and lines of enquiry.
  • A respect for historical evidence and the ability to make critical use of it to support their learning.
  • Enjoyment in embracing challenging activities, including opportunities to undertake high quality research across a range of history topics.
  • A developing sense of curiosity about the past and how and why people interpret the past in different ways.

 

Implementation:

To ensure high standards of teaching and learning in History, our curriculum is designed to enable every child to build individual resilience and become curious and inquisitive thinkers, whilst developing skills of cooperation and connection both with their peers and the past. Children will be given opportunities to evolve these skills and characteristics through a progressive, coherent curriculum embodied within a rich narrative. Each class will deliver a termly or half termly topic, focusing on the knowledge and skills stated in the National Curriculum. Class teachers will ensure opportunities are made for cross curricular learning, wherever possible, so that aspects of historical learning are reinforced in other parts of the curriculum.

 

The planning process will collectively look like this,  teachers will:

  • Create long and medium term plans in each subject. These plans will ensure progression and depth, concentrating on skills suitable to the year group.
  • Ask challenging and leading questions so pupils can answer and further their curiosity by applying their learning in a philosophical manner.
  • Plan exciting trips and in school visits by experts, that will enhance the learning experience.
  • Will effectively assess children’s skill development through formative assessment.

 

To support teachers in successfully implementing the above, the History coordinator aims to:

  • Develop and create a progressive framework that focuses on the key skills children will build on at every stage of their primary learning journey. This will be shared with all staff so everyone is conscious of the learning and skills that have been developed in earlier years and where they are leading to in future years.
  • Support teachers with developing cross curricular links with the wider curriculum.
  • Take on personal CPD so as to be able to offer high quality support and advice to colleagues on any issues or development ideas related to History.
  • Monitor pupil progress, through book scrutinies, formative assessment and lesson observations.
  • Seek to create and provide external links for whole school and class based learning opportunities.

 

Impact:

The History curriculum at Widmer End Combined School is high quality, rich and engaging. The teachers enjoy delivering it and as a result children are engaged and excited throughout their Historical learning journey. Delivery is well thought out, well delivered and in line with National Curriculum objectives. As a result, children are provided plentiful opportunities to engage deeply with subject areas and develop critical thinking and investigative skills associated with Historical enquiry. If children are keeping up with the curriculum they are deemed to be making good or better progress. 

 

All children very much enjoy their learning of history throughout their years with us and will eagerly discuss, in great detail, Florence Nightingale, the Stone Age, the Romans or any other topic indulged in during their time in our school. This enthusiasm and energy is, in and of itself, a measure of the impact of quality teaching and learning that occurs within History and beyond. This energy underpins a hunger for furthering knowledge and harnessing a wide range of skills that can be applied across all areas of every child’s learning.

 

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