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History Curriculum Coverage - Years One to Six


Why teach history?

History helps children to gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain's past and that of the wider world. It should inspire their curiosity to know more about the past. Through the effective teaching of history, children ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments and develop perspective and judgment. History helps children to understand the complexity of people's lives , the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups, as well as their own identity and the challenges of their time.  Our team leader for history is Emma Sutton and the link governor is Helen Ellis.



The National Curriculum for history aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • know and understand the history of these islands as a coherent, chronological narrative, from the earliest times to the present day: how people's lives have  shaped this nation and how Britain has influenced and been influenced by the wider world
  • know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations; the expansion and dissolution of empires; characteristic features of past non-European societies; achievements and follies of mankind
  • gain and deploy a historically-grounded understanding of abstract terms such as empire, civilisation, parliament and peasantry
  • understand historical concepts such as continuity and change, cause and consequence, similarity, difference and significance, and use them to make connections, draw contrasts, analyse trends, frame historically valid questions and create their own structured accounts, including written narratives and analyses
  • understand the methods of historical enquiry, including how evidence is used rigorously to make historical claims, and discern how and why contrasting arguments and interpretations of the past have been constructed
  • gain historical perspective by placing their growing knowledge into different contexts, understanding the connections between local, regional, national and international history; between cultural, economic, military, political, religious and social history; and between short- and long-term timescales


Key Stage One

Pupils should develop an awareness of the past, using common words and phrases relating to the passing of time. They should know where the people and events they study fit within a chronological framework and identify similarities and differences between ways of life in different periods. They should use a wide vocabulary of everyday historical terms. They should ask and answer questions, choosing and using parts of stories and other sources to show that they know and understand key features of events. They should understand some of the ways in which we find out about the past and identify different ways in which it is represented.


Pupils are taught about:

  • changes within living memory
  • events beyond living memory that are significant eg. The Great Fire of London
  • the lives of significant individuals in the past who have contributed to national and international achievements. Some should be used to compare aspects of life in different periods
  • significant historical events, people and places in their own locality


Key Stage Two

Pupils continue to develop a chronologically secure knowledge and understanding of British, local and world history. They note connections, contrasts and trends over time and develop the appropriate historical terms. They  address and sometimes devise historically valid questions about change, cause, similarity and difference and significance. They construct informed responses that that involve thoughtful selection and organisation of relevant historical information. Pupils gain an understanding of how our knowledge of the past is constructed from a range of sources.


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