“The more you know about the past, the better prepared you are for the future”
Theodore Roosevelt (26th President of the United States)
At Godolphin Junior Academy, we believe that History should ignite pupils’ curiosity to ask questions about the past and make links to the modern day world. We aim to bring History alive for our pupils through differentiated and engaging lessons. School visits and workshops underpin History as a valuable way of providing memorable first hand experiences to support pupils’ learning.
Our curriculum covers the skills and knowledge outlined in the National Curriculum through inspiring themes which relate to our Power of Reading texts. Skills are planned progressively, so that pupils, by the end of Year 6, will possess the ability to think critically about History and communicate ideas confidently as knowledgeable historians. Well-planned lessons will further develop their understanding of how to interpret and critically evaluate different types of sources of evidence. Pupils will also consider the lasting legacies of different civilisations on our modern world.
Pupils will have the opportunity to make clear links to broader themes by exploring key concepts like democracy whilst studying different civilisations and considering how these concepts are represented. Key vocabulary is taught within our schemes of work and lessons provide opportunities for pupils to use and apply their new vocabulary.
Through the use of classroom timelines, we endeavour to build pupils’ understanding of the chronological framework of British and World History, thus enabling them to make sense of new knowledge that they acquire and how it links to prior learning. Pupils will consider continuity and change of time.
Godolphin aims to foster a lifelong love of History which will continue for a lifetime.
Historical enquiry is central to the Godolphin Junior Academy curriculum. A range of primary and secondary sources are explored in engaging lessons. Pupils are taught to be discerning about sources and also to understand the challenges historians face when using different source material. Pupils are encouraged to link their experiences in Modern Britain with their understanding of the past when studying the impact of historical events, civilisations and famous people.
Each History unit taught in The Godolphin Junior Academy is linked with a Power of Reading text. This ensures immersion in the vocabulary, themes, and historical context. In addition to this, pupils are provided with opportunities to complete an extended piece of writing linked with each unit, showing their knowledge and understanding.
History is taught in blocked units; with 6 lessons in each unit. Pupils’ History work is completed in History books. Learning objectives are taken from the National Curriculum for Key Stage 2 and progression in Historical Enquiry is ensured by following the Park Federation Skills Progression document.
Teachers at The Godolphin Junior Academy enjoy providing pupils with an exciting and immersive History curriculum. Their subject knowledge is constantly developing thanks to whole school access to The Historical Society and Key Stage History websites.
Pupils feel success throughout their History lessons through stimulating and engaging lessons. Higher level vocabulary- linked with the units – is taught and assessed.
Exciting trips and external visitors provide pupils with hands on experiences to further develop their understanding of the topics covered. In each classroom, a consistent time line provides a context for all of the historical units studied. This provides opportunities for pupils to activate prior learning and knowledge.
History Curriculum Timeline
A Concept Curriculum
We have key concepts running through our history curriculum. Through these concepts we teach pupils the essential knowledge they need to know to be successful in their learning, and build upon this knowledge as they progress through each unit of history.
Our pupils are able to refer to our history concepts when making connections between historical periods and across the wider curriculum. We know that if pupils can make connections in their learning then they are more likely to embed this knowledge and remember it over time. This is because pupils have been given the opportunity to think deeply and recognise how knowledge is connected and related to their prior learning.
The history concepts that interweave throughout our history curriculum are:
Power, Beliefs, Language, Government, Revolution, Hierarchy, Civilisation and Trade
Pupils learn to place events in chronological order; analyse the effectiveness of different sources; understand the impact of significant events in British and World History; compare and contrast different societies in the past and use a wide range of historical vocabulary to ask and answer questions about the past.
At the start of each unit being taught, pupil’s prior knowledge and understanding is taken into consideration. Knowledge Seekers provides teachers with an in depth understanding of each child’s starting points and helps to direct the learning throughout the unit. Prior understanding of subject specific vocabulary is also assessed. At the end of each unit, pupils demonstrate how they have learnt more by repeating the assessment.
The assessment of pupil’s knowledge and understanding in History lessons can be found within curriculum books where levelled WALTs (learning objectives) are assessed on a lesson by lesson basis. Pupil’s work is given next steps and their response to this marking is also considered. Pupils show that they know more by applying their knowledge to an extended piece of writing for each unit.
Pupils enjoy History lessons at The Godolphin Junior Academy and their experiences help to create inquisitive minds with a desire for life long learning.
We provide a wide range of experiences for our pupils such as history days, workshops and trips and visits. Here is an example of our Year 4 pupils celebrating Anglo-Saxon Day. They all arrived at school quite excited to experience being an Anglo-Saxon for the day and they all looked amazing as they were transported back in time. The pupils dyed materials the Anglo-Saxon way (using turmeric) and designed tunics. They also learnt about long boats and shields. Year 4 thoroughly enjoyed the day and gained even further knowledge about life as an Anglo Saxon.