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At Emmaus, we are all historians! Our intent is to ignite a passion for History; to equip our children with the knowledge, skills and understanding to become the next generation of historians! We encourage children to be curious and excited to learn about Britain’s past and that of the wider world and understand that History could also shape their future. A high-quality History curriculum encompasses topics which aim to foster awe and wonder and drive children to ask questions linked to the period of time they are studying. Through our teaching of History, we aim to equip children with both the tools and confidence to ask perceptive questions, reflect critically, challenge viewpoints and develop their own judgements based on historical evidence.
At Emmaus, we use a topic-based approach to develop historical skills and to encourage children to work as historians. We intend for our children to learn about History in an active and creative way. Our aims are to fulfil the requirements of the National Curriculum for History; providing a broad and balanced curriculum that encompasses the British Values throughout; ensuring the development of historical concepts, knowledge and skills; and for the children to study life in the past.
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.
Topic areas that we undertake to ensure coverage of the National Curriculum objectives:
· Changes within living memory (Old and new toys).
· Significant historical events, people and places in their own locality (Study of how Liverpool transport has changed over time).
· Lives of significant individuals who have contributed to national and international achievements (Neil Armstrong compared to Christopher Columbus).
· Lives of significant individuals who have contributed to national and international achievements (Florence Nightingale).
· Significant historical events, people and places in their own locality (Noel Chavasse).
· Events beyond living memory (Great Fire of London).
· Significant events, people and places in their own locality / Lives of significant individuals who have contributed to national and international achievements (Mersey beat / The Beatles / John Lennon Airport).
· Changes in Britain from the Stone Age to the Iron Age. (Stone Age).
· Changes in Britain from the Stone Age to the Iron Age. (Bronze Age and Iron Age).
· The Roman Empire and its effect on Britain (The Romans).
· A study of Greek life and their achievements and their influence on the Western world (Ancient Greeks).
· A local History study - How aspects of national history are reflected in our locality (Victorian Liverpool).
· Britain’s settlement by the Anglo-Saxons and Scots (Anglo Saxons and Scots).
The achievements of the earliest civilisations (Ancient Egypt).
A theme in British history that extends pupils’ chronological knowledge beyond 1066 (World War One).
The Viking and Anglo-Saxon struggle for the kingdom of England to the time of Edward the Confessor (Vikings and Anglo-Saxons).
A theme in British history that extends pupils’ chronological knowledge beyond 1066 / A local History study (World War Two – Liverpool at War).
A non-European society that provides contrasts with British history (Mayan Civilization).
A local History Study - a study of an aspect of history or a site dating from a period beyond 1066 that is significant in the locality (Croxteth Park: What influence and impact did the Molyneux family have on the local area?)
Through our carefully designed curriculum, the History topics will help children to gain an understanding of the complexity of people’s lives and the process of change; as well as their own identity and the challenges of their time. This will be done by using a range of resources that will bring history to life and include photographs, diaries, newspaper articles, music and handling real artifacts from the past. Excursions and visiting experts will enhance the learning experience.
Teachers have identified the key knowledge and skills of each topic and consideration has been given to ensure progression across topics throughout each year group across the school. By the end of year 6, children will have a chronological understanding of British history from the Stone Age to the present day. They are able to draw comparisons and make connections between different time periods and their own lives. Interlinked with this are studies of world history, such as the ancient civilisations of Greece and the Mayans.
The impact of our History curriculum is measured through a range of different strategies:
· Data which is produced from on-going teacher assessments
· Lesson observations
· Monitoring of History books
· Learning walks
· History Ambassadors
· Pupil voice
The ultimate impact and measure of the History curriculum at Emmaus is to ensure that our children are equipped with historical skills, knowledge and understanding that will enable them to be ready for the curriculum at Key Stage 3 and for life as an adult in the wider world. Outcomes in History books evidence a broad and balanced history curriculum and demonstrate the children’s acquisition of identified key knowledge. We want the children to have thoroughly enjoyed learning about History, therefore encouraging them to undertake new life experiences - both immediate and in the future.