History and Geography
Skills and Knowledge Progression
At Wantage Primary Academy, we deliver humanities subject skills and understanding under a lead topic whilst being discrete lessons in terms of skills and knowledge. Our topics have a history and geography base so that we teach location and place knowledge, weather and climate skills and knowledge and about significant historical events, people and places in our own locality. This time provides further opportunities to learn about people and cultures, including modern Britain, male and female pioneers and those from a range of backgrounds to fully reflect modern British society. Our topics are carefully balanced and planned to be age appropriate across the years. The breadth of possibilities and opportunities for learning reaches further than the two 'labels' of History and Geography. Teaching and learning in English, Science, Art and Design and Technology are often inspired and stem from the humanities topics.
Our topic overviews are produced to show what is taught. Our skills progression sheets show the knowledge and skills covered in each year group. The coverage of topics in EYFS and KS1 is mixed so that Nursery and Reception and Y1 and 2 cover content over a 2-year rolling programme (on an A/ B cycle); there topics also integrate the humanities subjects. This allows for children and teachers to work collaboratively across the two year groups as well as shared educational visits and experiences. It also ensures breadth and depth for all learners and a range of skills and experiences over their 2-year journey. In KS2, children move onto a yearly programme that progresses chronologically through British history and then beyond.
History Curriculum Statement of Intent
Our History curriculum aims to inspire our pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past. History helps pupils to understand the process of change, the make up of societies as well as their own identity and the challenges in modern times. Our history curriculum will equip the children to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments and develop perspective and judgment. We shape our history curriculum to ensure it fulfils the requirements of the National Curriculum for History, ensuring the progressive development of historical concepts, knowledge and skills; and for the children to study life in the past.
Our aim at WPA is to encourage pupils to develop an appreciation and understanding of the past, evaluating a range of primary and secondary sources. We aim for our children to become historians and be able to explain clearly how these sources give us an insight about how people around the world used to live and, as they move up the school, think about how these interpretations may differ. Pupils will be taught to make links between these areas of learning, with the aim of developing engaged, motivated and curious learners that can reflect on the past and make meaningful links to the present day. Our History curriculum has been designed to cover all of the skills, knowledge and understanding as set out in the National Curriculum. The National Curriculum states that ‘a high-quality history education will help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. It should inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past.’
To ensure that pupils develop a secure knowledge that they can build on, our History curriculum is organised into a progression model that outlines the skills, knowledge and vocabulary to be taught in a sequentially coherent way. When covering part, the content is carefully organised by each year group through a long term plan. Content knowledge, vocabulary and skills will then be planned for at a greater level of detail. Meaningful links with other subjects are made in class to strengthen connections and understanding for pupils.
Our teaching equips pupils with knowledge about the history of their local area and of Britain and how it has influenced and been influenced by the wider world; know and understand about significant aspects of the history of the wider world like ancient civilisations and empires; changes in living memory and beyond living memory; learn about the lives of significant people of the past; understand the methods of historical enquiry and be able to ask and answer questions.
We implement a curriculum that is progressive throughout the whole school. History is taught as part of a half-termly or termly topic, focusing on knowledge and skills stated in the National Curriculum. All learning starts by revisiting prior knowledge and thinking about where things fit in history both chronologically and societally. This is scaffolded to support children to recall previous learning and make connections. Staff model explicitly the subject-specific vocabulary, knowledge and skills relevant to the learning to allow them to integrate new knowledge into larger concepts.
Learning is supported through the use of key vocab which is dislayed, added to each lesson and utilized by staff and children. This provide children with scaffolding that supports them to retain new facts and vocabulary in their long term memory.
Tier two and tier three subject specific vocabulary is displayed and shared along with key facts and questions, and model exemplars of the work being taught. History assessment is ongoing throughout the relevant themes to inform teachers with their planning lesson activities and differentiation. Summative assessment is completed at the end of each topic where history objectives have been covered; our progression documents are used to inform of school improvements or skills that need to be further enhanced.
At WPA, pupil voice shows that pupils are confident and able to talk about what they have learnt in history using subject-specific vocabulary. Pupil voice also demonstrates that pupils enjoy history and are able to recall their learning over time. Pupils’ work demonstrates that history is taught at an age-appropriate standard across each year group with opportunities planned in for pupils working at greater depth. Pupil work also demonstrates that objectives taught and assessed are history objectives as opposed to English objectives etc. Work is of good quality and demonstrates pupils are acquiring knowledge, skills and vocabulary in an appropriate sequence.
Geography Curriculum Statement of Intent
Our Geography curriculum strives to provide our children with the opportunities to become local experts and global citizens, deepening their interest, curiosity and wonder in exploring their own place in the world. We believe it is important to provide ‘Living Geography’ concerned with children’s lives, starting with their immediate environment and looking at the futures of their locality and then world. Through our curriculum we intend to children will develop a sense of their world at the local, national and global scales understanding the interconnections between how people and the environment interact. Fieldwork is an essential part of this. We will take full advantage of our changing local area. Pupils learn to think critically, think spatially, use maps, visual images and technologies, to analyse and present information. They will have an adept understanding of their responsibilities within their own society whist also having a coherent insight into sustainability of a dynamically changing world.
Children will be taught both geographical knowledge and skills in discrete geography lessons. We aim for our children to have an understanding of the wider world, generate and answer questions, locate places, identify similarities and differences, carry out field work and be able to explain processes and human impact using geographical vocabulary. Geography encourages pupils to understand how other people from different countries and cultures live, which promotes our school values of respect and tolerance.
Our Geography curriculum has been designed to cover the knowledge, skills and understanding as set out in the National Curriculum. The National Curriculum states that ‘a high-quality geography education should inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives.’ To ensure that pupils develop a secure knowledge that they can build on, our geography curriculum is organised into a progression model that outlines the knowledge and skills to be taught in a sequentially coherent way which builds on and makes connections with prior knowledge and learning. Locational Knowledge; Place knowledge; Human and Physical Geography; Geographical Skills and Fieldwork are all mapped out to ensure that pupils build on secure prior knowledge. This is outlined in our planning document. This enables children to know more, remember more, achieve more.
All learning will start with revisiting prior knowledge and making meaningful connections. Staff will model explicitly the subject-specific vocabulary, knowledge and skills relevant to the learning to allow them to integrate new knowledge into larger concepts. During lessons children are exposed to geography specific vocabulary and taught these through repetition and meaningful use. Previous vocabulary is recapped and reinforced. Key vocab is in all planning documents and shared and used with nd by the children each lesson.
Children have access to a variety of resources in the classroom to deepen learning and to help them understand key knowledge, concepts and geographical skills. Quick fire questions are used to review learning and check that children know more and remember more. Geography assessment is ongoing throughout every geography lesson to inform teachers with their planning for lesson activities and differentiation. Summative assessment is completed at the end of each unit where geography objectives have been learned.
Children have the knowledge and skills to work like geographers. They make sustained progress across the subject and can apply their knowledge and skills in a range of field work situations. Children have a sense of place with locational knowledge of the world, its environment and how human and physical factors lead to changes over time. Geography is assessed against National Curriculum objectives through teacher judgement and monitored by the subject leader through learning walks, monitoring opportunities. Feedback from leaders, progression grids and pupil voice supports teachers in making accurate judgements of what the children know. Pupil voice is used to enable leaders to assess the impact of the geography curriculum and whether children know and remember more. Pupil work demonstrates that geography is taught at an age-appropriate standard across each year, which is ambitious for all children with added challenge to enable greater depth.
Please ask for our History overview