Garden Suburb Junior School is steeped in local history since its opening in 1912, with part of the building rebuilt in 1960 to replace damage caused during the World War II. As a result, the history curriculum draws from the rich history of both the school itself and the local area. This is celebrated as part of the curriculum to enable children to be fully inspired, engaged and challenged in their learning.
Our topics follow the national curriculum expectations and are informed by current pedagogy of an inclusive and diverse curriculum, representative of multicultural Britain. Our curriculum aims to build upon the prior knowledge and understanding of the subject from our partner Infant School and aims to ensure that all pupils have an understanding of periods of time with historical significance. We believe that pupils deserve an ambitious and broad history curriculum, with multiple opportunities to gain a coherent understanding of Britain’s past and develop curiosity of the wider world and its past.
Through our History curriculum we intend to:
- Ensure children have an appreciative understanding of the past, its significance to current society and to begin 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.
- Provide opportunities for children to gain a coherent knowledge of the past which helps to stimulate and deepen children’s intellectual curiosity.
- Provide children the opportunities to think critically and analytically through understanding of the diversity of societies and the challenges of their time
- Provide quality learning opportunities to local areas of historical interest both within the borough of Barnet and further using an effective enquiry based curriculum.
History is taught in blocks throughout the year to ensure that children are able to achieve depth in their learning. Periods of historical interest have been carefully sequenced and mapped to ensure progression across the school, enabling children to have a broad understanding of the development of British history, and make links to other cultures and societies.
At the start of each unit, timelines are used to ensure children have a chronological understanding of prior learning and each topic is introduced chronologically to previous years. Opportunities for teaching history in a cross-curricular way, enables children to use and apply skills across the whole curriculum.
Children are also encouraged to identify and understand their place in the modern world and the events which have shaped the world and the impact which these have on their future. They are provided with opportunities to critically question and analytically reflect periods of history by understanding key concepts within history, such as significance and causation and consequence, allowing children to be able to ask leading questions, analyse information and convey their views in a methodical and structured way.
These skills are developed progressively through the curriculum to create historians confident in communicating their views, both in writing and orally. The curriculum offered immerses children in a range of cultures and engenders an enquiring and critical outlook on the world, to develop skills that can be applied to future endeavours.
Our history curriculum also encompasses study of important historical figures. We provide children with the opportunity to learn about a range of significant individuals throughout history and look at how these individuals have contributed to the world we live in today.
We encourage an inclusive environment and ensure all pupils, including those most vulnerable and those who are disadvantaged, have the opportunity to access the full and broad subjects through carefully planned support and scaffolding as required.
To deliver our History curriculum we will:
- study issues at a local, national and international level in ancient, medieval, early modern and modern time periods
- understand Britain’s influence on the wider world
- study the history and influence of different peoples and places across time
- assess the impact of events on individual and communities
- learn to interpret a broad range of sources both primary and secondary, including propaganda
- expose children to different peoples’ perspectives on issues and events
- develop an understanding of how to apply and write about historical concepts such as causation; continuity and change; significance; consequence and diversity
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 Egyptians.
Cross curricular outcomes in history are specifically planned for and these are indicated on the school’s progression mapping. The school’s own context is also considered, with opportunities for visits to places of historical interest and learning outside the classroom also identified and embedded in practice. Visits to the extended local area (e.g. Hatfield House, Chiltern open air museum, Big wood, Hampstead Garden Suburb, Kenwood House) and use of local artefacts, such as the use of maps and photographs of bomb damage to the local area in WWII, also support contextualised learning, as well as the acquisition of key knowledge and systematic development of key skills.
At Garden Suburb Junior school, outcomes in books evidence a broad and balanced history curriculum and demonstrate the children’s acquisition of identified key knowledge.
Emphasis is placed on analytical thinking and questioning and children demonstrate a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world, in addition to being curious to know more about the past. Through these, pupils ask perceptive questions, think critically, consider evidence, sift arguments and develop perspective and judgement.
The impact of our History curriculum is measured by:
- Providing a rich and engaging cultural capital with educational visits and activities linked to places of historical interest.
- Quality first teaching and learning opportunities which produce wider cross curricular links to objectives linked to the National Curriculum.
- Children developing a life-long passion for history and inspire curiosity in the wider world
- Children being able to think critically with a coherent understanding of Britain’s past in relation to the wider world
- Aspirational outcomes in books evidencing a broad and balanced curriculum, demonstrating a sound acquisition of key historical knowledge, skills and understanding.
Assessment for learning is imperative in ensuring that children make progress in lessons. Progress is measured through outcomes evidenced in children’s books and the use of self and peer assessment opportunities. Children should be willing and able to participate in class discussions and learning, recall periods of historical significance and identify the importance of the past in relation to the present and future. The KWL strategy (What I Know, What I Would like to know and What I have Learnt) is used to assess existing knowledge and used as a point of reflection based on children’s interests. Teachers are also provided with regular opportunities to develop their own subject knowledge through sharing good practice, peer observations and visiting experts.