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King's Court First School

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History at King's Court School 


Our Vision

Here at King's Court, we strive for our children to be expert historians through delivering a broad and balanced experience in our history sessions, developing a coherent picture of Britain's past and the wider world. Children will be inspired, curious, and encouraged to develop their inquisitive minds and passion for the subject through explorations of the past. It is our vision to inspire a lifelong love of history within our pupils. History has changed our lives and is vital to the world’s future prosperity.



Our curriculum starts in the Early Years and progresses sequentially through to Year Four. In every lesson we focus on threshold concepts that ties the ambitious body of knowledge together with the characteristics children are developing.

These essential characteristics of mastery in History are:

• An excellent knowledge and understanding of people, events, and contexts from a range of historical periods and of historical concepts and processes.

• The ability to think critically about history and communicate ideas very confidently in styles appropriate to a range of audiences.

• The ability to consistently support, evaluate and challenge their own and others’ views using detailed, appropriate and accurate historical evidence derived from a range of sources.

• The ability to think, reflect, debate, discuss and evaluate the past, formulating and refining questions and lines of enquiry.

• A passion for history and an enthusiastic engagement in learning, which develops their sense of curiosity about the past and their understanding of how and why people interpret the past in different ways.

• A respect for historical evidence and the ability to make robust and critical use of it to support their explanations and judgments.

• A desire to embrace challenging activities, including opportunities to undertake high-quality research across a range of history topics.

Threshold concepts are taught repeatedly throughout the curriculum, linking learning into meaningful and rich semantic schemas.

In History the threshold concepts are:

  • Investigate and interpret the past

This concept involves understanding that our understanding of the past comes from an interpretation of the available evidence.


  • Build an overview of world history

This concept involves an appreciation of the characteristic features of the past and an understanding that life is different for different sections of society.


  • Understand chronology

This concept involves an understanding of how to chart the passing of time and how some aspects of history studied were happening at similar times in different places.


  • Communicate historically

This concept involves using historical vocabulary and techniques to convey information about the past.


WHY is history important? What's special about it here?

History is important as it gives children an understanding of how we have got to where we are today. By learning about events in history, children should be able to identify the fact that historical concepts repeat themselves and make comparisons with then and now.




Therefore, our aims are to ensure children experience a wide breadth of study and have, by the end of King’s Court, long-term memory of an ambitious body of procedural and semantic knowledge.

Our curriculum content and maps are carefully crafted and available on our website.



How do we teach history here?

In Key Stages One and Two, history is taught as a discrete subject every week every other term. During these sessions, pupils are given the opportunity to explore a specific topic or theme. It is an instrumental part of the school’s curriculum, structured on the Chris Quigley essentials, which aims to challenge, engage and inspire our pupils: allowing them to recognise their potential as historians. Elements of history are delivered to children in the Early Years Foundation Stage, through the Foundation Stage Curriculum (Understanding the World) and are incorporated into the termly topics.

At King's Court, we have designed our curriculum around specific 'Curriculum drivers' that reflect the locality, needs and interests of our pupils. These curriculum drivers are Community, Culture and the Arts. Curiosity is celebrated within the classroom and teachers create a positive attitude to historical learning within their classrooms, reinforcing an expectation that all children are capable of achieving high standards in history. Our curriculum balances out the skills needed to become expert historians as well as a clear progression of knowledge from the earliest stages. In Early Years, our pupils begin to think about changes in their living memory and begin to develop core language in relation to time such as 'before', 'after' and 'next.' As our pupils progress through school, they begin to think about changes further back into the past, eventually progressing on to Ancient Civilisations in Key Stage Two. As well as this knowledge progression, our pupils are encouraged to revisit and develop core skills by exploring artefacts, photos and are encouraged to use materials which promote research and problem solving. The school also actively promotes opportunities to engage with our local history through school trips to places such as Windsor Castle and Runnymede as the believed site of the signing of the Magna Carta.

Planning and delivery

Planning involves teachers creating engaging lessons, often involving high-quality resources to aid understanding of conceptual knowledge. Teachers use precise questioning in class to test conceptual knowledge and skills, assessing children regularly to identify those children with gaps in learning in order to plan for next steps.

Within each Milestone, students gradually progress in their procedural fluency and semantic strength through three cognitive domains: basic, advancing and deep. We build upon the learning and skill development of the previous years. Children are encouraged to refer back to previously studied topics, making links with common abstract themes, such as empire, power or legacy, to form strong, meaningful schema.

Effective subject leadership and regular monitoring show that our children understand and apply key principles within their work. At King’s Court, we have a rigorous monitoring process of the history curriculum that is kept up to date and contributes towards our school improvement plan.

Developing a strong Historical Schema - a connection between ideas:

Within each year group the development of continuous provision will support children to ‘bump’ into historical experiences on a daily basis through equipment, artefacts, books (fiction or non-fiction), technology, questions and conversations with adults. It will take the form of daily routines, replaces the teaching of some aspects of the curriculum and, in other cases, provides retrieval practice for previously learned content. The continuous provision approach enables pupils to reinforce and build upon prior learning, make connections and develop subject specific language.



The successful approach at King’s Court results in an engaging, high-quality history education that provides children with the foundations and knowledge for understanding the world. Our engagement with the local environment ensures that children learn through varied and first-hand experiences of the world around them.

Frequent, continuous and progressive learning - both inside and outside the classroom is embedded throughout the history curriculum. Whether it be through workshops, trips or interactions with experts and local organisations, children have the understanding that history has changed our lives and that it is vital to the world’s future prosperity.

At King’s Court, we demonstrate the success of our ambitious history curriculum as follows:

Concrete ways of seeing the impact of what our children achieve in history:

  • Contribution to a continuous timeline of events through history as they access new learning in their year groups.
  • Development of an informed understanding of historical periods and topics through before and after mind maps (Cold task and Hot task).
  • First hand experiences provided via visitors coming into school, workshops and field trips.
  • AfL practices such as peer and self-assessment, immediate feedback, helping pupils understand where they are in their learning, where they are going and how to get there and other activities to directly support progress.
  • Pupil’s books are scrutinised across teams and by the subject leader to monitor standards and progression.
  • Pupil voice - Images and videos of the children’s practical learning, Interviewing the pupils about their learning, during and after their experiences. Their opinions and interests are valued and included.
  • Photographic evidence of the learning that has taken place or currently taking place. Displays around the learning environment reflecting learning through the historical topics and themes.

Assessments for history are made over a period of time and are based on the evidence of more than one activity. They are made through observation, discussion and written work. The children are also involved in self-evaluating their learning. All staff use progression through the milestones, along with National Curriculum age related expectations, to support teacher assessment and annual report writing. Children’s achievements are reported formally during the school year and informally at parent and teacher interviews.


A child's perspective:

'We use mind maps to show our learning.'

'I loved wrapping my friend up like a mummy - it was so fun!'

'I drew Neil Armstrong and labelled his kit and equipment.'

'We learnt about Guy Fawkes and why we celebrate bonfire night and have fireworks.'

'I love our kahoot quizzes at the end of the topic to see what we can remember about what we've learnt!'

'I liked making my own hieroglyphs.'