The aim of History teaching at our school is to stimulate the children’s interest and understanding about the past, as well as to develop a genuine enthusiasm for the subject. We teach children a sense of chronology, and through this they develop a sense of identity based on their shared heritage. Thus they learn to value their own and other people’s cultures in modern, multicultural Britain, and by considering how people lived in the past, they are better able to make their own life choices today. In our school, we teach children to understand how events in the past have influenced our lives today; we also teach them to investigate these past events, and, by so doing, develop independently their skills of enquiry, analysis, interpretation and problem-solving.
Year 3 – The more distant past
From the Stone Age to the Iron Age
Within this topic, children consider the earliest elements of the British society as we know it. Through the study of rocks and their shape, the children learn how tools and technology developed on a primitive but vital level. Children compare how the written communication and art work of the time developed into something that can be interpreted today.
The Ancient Egyptians
It is through the study of the Ancient Egyptians that the children use archaeological discoveries as well as artefacts and sources to fully investigate and explore the way of life of this period of history. Skills of deduction and inference are developed to identify the past. Time concepts of BC/AD are introduced the use of chronological timeframes.
The history of Hazlemere and the local area
To encourage the children’s sense of identity the study of the development of Hazlemere and the local area is a key focus. This unit of work continues to develop the children’s use of primary sources as well as experiential days to understand local land use and industry. This unit of work has been developed further within year 5.
Year 4 – Invasion and Settlement
In this unit of work Britain’s development is understood as being influenced by people from other societies who settled here and became integrated. Children use archaeological discoveries to investigate and explore the Roman way of life.
The arrival of the Anglo-Saxons is discussed within this area of study, while cross-curricular links are made with RE through the discovery of artefacts at Sutton Hoo, and the study of Bede, Hilda and ship burials.
The Ancient Greeks
The Ancient Greek Empire is explored along with its significant cultural and intellectual legacy. The Greek society is compared to our own and the concept of civilisation and democracy is explored. This links well with our healthy schools weeks, with the history of the Olympic Games and the development of games, health and medicine.
Children will understand how invaders have influenced and contributed to our national identity. Evidence from the local and national area are considered for primary evidence and the impacts they had on both our language and landscape.
The study of the local area from year 3 is developed further looking now at the national change in land use and industry.
Crime and Punishment
The development of crime and punishment since medieval times is taught with an emphasis on centuries. Children become familiar with the chronology through the Tudor, Stuart, Georgian and Victorian ages. The cultural characteristics of each century are explored through the different acts of crime that predominated and the punishments that were significant to the time. This enables the children to understand the massive social changes that took place.
When teaching the Ancient Mayan culture children are encouraged to work within a team to research a chosen area of focus to develop further their skills of investigation, inference and deduction. Primary sources and artefacts are an essential and integral part of teaching this unit of work.