Our aspiration for every learner:
At Guru Nanak Sikh Academy Primary, we believe it is fundamental that our pupils understand the past, identify how current society has been influenced by History and how it will continue to shape their future. A strong understanding of key historical events will help our pupils to process and understand current events and their role in them.
Our stimulating, enquiry-based History curriculum encourages our children to be independent learners and curious individuals, developing their understanding of their local area as well as wider British and international history. Through these lessons children develop their chronological understanding, understand and balance different perspectives, analyse and interpret historical evidence, understand how we know about History, compare and contrast different periods, develop their questioning and build critical thinking skills.
We want our children to learn like Historians and our spiral curriculum allows pupils to regularly tangle with disciplinary concepts and key historical themes throughout their primary education, deepening their definitions and interpretations through each encounter. With the majority of our pupils with English as an additional language, children will have the opportunity to explore crucial historical vocabulary repeatedly through their school life in order for them to identify the nuances of the words in each historical period, enriching their own lexicon.
Our aim is for our pupils to leave school with an awe and wonder about the past, an interest in exploring all facets of history and a keen understanding of how different causes and effects throughout history have shaped our world.
How we support our pupils to acquire this learning:
- Children study a tailored History curriculum with topics that develop their understanding of the local area, alongside key national and international topics.
- Topics in each year group build children’s awareness of chronology and key developments as well as allowing them to compare periods as they study either simultaneously occurring periods, the next chronologically or thematic topics.
- The spiral curriculum means that children repeatedly encounter key disciplinary concepts, historical themes and core vocabulary. Children are able to deepen their understanding every time they experience it and apply new meanings.
- The enquiry structure adds an element of mystery and purpose, providing them a reason for the learning and giving them the opportunity to apply their understanding from across the topic as well as prior knowledge.
- Opportunities for Speaking and Listening activities are planned into topics to develop children’s verbal abilities. Children are prompted through high-quality questioning to structure and explain their understanding using topic-specific vocabulary and knowledge to do so. Pupils also have the opportunity for talk to share ideas and expertise with peers.
- Themes and vocabulary are introduced and built from Early Years through to Secondary to provide a cohesive curriculum. Cross-curricular links are made through topics where possible to enable vocabulary to be used in multiple contexts.
- Children should provide other examples of the themes or vocabulary from other units they have learnt about either in the same year group or previous years.
Support for Staff:
- High quality CPD, meetings and documents are provided for staff to support the introduction of the new curriculum and build subject knowledge and confidence in teachers and LSAs.
- Teachers have access to high quality schemes and resources to draw upon when planning their topics.
- Staff have access to tactile resources for children to use to analyse, study and investigate to support their understanding in a practical manner.
- Pupils will have the chance to experience History through extra curricular workshops and activities. These will give pupils hands-on learning, access to further sources and artefacts and will help them apply concepts learnt in the classroom.
- Pupils will receive half-termly knowledge maps. These will assist in pre-teaching some key elements of the topic such as core vocabulary and some key facts. It will also show parents what children are learning in their topics so that they can support at home.
How we measure our achievements:
- Teachers assess through a variety of methods including knowledge harvests, questioning, final enquiry tasks.
- End of topic assessment enables teachers to identify any gaps or children that require further support in terms of key themes, disciplinary concepts and understanding of the key historical vocabulary before planning them into future topics.
- Vocabulary on the knowledge maps will support staff in assessing the children at the end of the topic through the colour-coded vocabulary with red words being the key words all children need to know, yellow as the ones most will know and green as the ones that show mastery and depth.