History at King's Court School
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 will be encouraged to develop their inquisitive minds and passion for the subject through explorations of the past.
Through using the Chris Quigley interwoven approach, we aim to ensure that learning takes place through a change to long-term memory and that all of our pupils experience a wide breadth of study.
In both Key Stages One and Two, the aim is to help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. It should inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past. Our policy ensures that every child has fair access to the History Curriculum and is provided with a breadth of experiences that should promote a healthy, positive relationship with the subject; embracing curiosity and allowing pupils to ‘become historians.’
Through the teaching of History, we aim:
- To stimulate curiosity about the past.
- To develop research skills needed to access relevant information.
- To increase knowledge and understanding of the history of Britain, Europe and the world.
- To help pupils develop a sense of identity through studying the history of their locality.
- To give opportunities to convey understanding / interpretation of past events in a variety of ways.
- To provide situations which foster independent / co-operative activities.
- To develop independent research skills through enquiry-based learning.
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 which is structured off of 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 (Knowledge & Understanding of the World) and 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. Along with Geography, History is presented to the pupils at King's Court as a larger 'theme', with History and Geography being taught in termly blocks within each long term.
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 artefact's, 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 references to our local area such as Runnymede as the believed site of the signing of the Magna Carta.
The aspects of History that are taught cover:
In the EYFS, pupils are encouraged to develop suitable language that transfers into the areas of being able to organise information in a chronological order. Pupils are encouraged to think about language such as time connectives to order their thoughts and structure them appropriately. They are also encouraged to recount important events within their living memory during ‘show and tell’, and recognise key changes over time according the Early Learning Goals (Understanding the world.) In Key Stages One and Two, pupils are given access to continuous provisions such as timelines to organise key events of study. Language is still modelled and encouraged with all pupils as they look to fit key events from their studies into the correct chronological order.
Historical Knowledge and Understanding
Pupils are introduced to a wide variety of events and significant historical figures in their studies in Key Stages One and Two. As a part of the Chris Quigley framework, pupils will often revisit events multiple times to help them develop a deeper, more meaningful understanding of the events and figures they encounter. Throughout their studies, pupils are given a variety of opportunities to think about history in different contexts, exploring changes in living memory, local history and international events of historical significance. In the EYFS, pupils begin to think about historical understanding through the Development Matters Early Learning Goals (Understanding the world.)
Interpretation of History
As pupils become more confident in areas of Historical study, they are also given opportunities to explore different types of evidence, exploring different interpretations of key historical events or figures. King’s Court provides a wide variety of resources on loan from the local Museum. Based on the Chris Quigley Essentials, as pupils revisit specific areas of history, they are encouraged to think about what they have learnt, and how this could potentially change the way they perceive these events. Pupils are encouraged in Key Stages One and Two to follow their own interpretations of Historical events/significant figures and back up their ideas with evidence that is gathered over a period of time to form a persuasive argument.
Pupils are encouraged to follow their own interests in History at King’s Court, and are given the skills to do this through Historical Enquiry. In Key Stages One and Two, pupils are given a wide range of opportunities to explore specific areas of History in great detail. They are encouraged to ask questions, and are given the tools which allow them to find their own answers. Pupils are encouraged to question why and how things might have happened as a part of the Chris Quigley curriculum format, moving on from the facts they have learnt and using them in constructive ways that support curiosity and passion for their individual interests.
Assessments for history are made over a period of time and are based on the evidence of more than one activity. The children are also involved in self-evaluating their learning.
- All staff are involved in the assessment of children’s progress.
- Children’s achievements are assessed through observation, discussion, written work.
- Children complete a 'Cold task' at the start of a unit and a 'Hot task' at the end to demonstrate the learning that has taken place.
- All staff use the 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.