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Subject Leader: Mrs C Gaimster


History Curriculum at King’s Meadow Academy

At King’s Meadow Academy, we want all of our children to be historians.


Our aim is that, through the teaching of history, we will excite children’s interests and understanding about the lives of people who lived in the past as well as understanding how past events have impacted upon and changed our lives today, in our local context and world wide.


We feel it is necessary to consistently develop a sense of chronology. This will allow children to not only discover what shaped us as a nation but what was happening in other parts of the world at the same time.


Our priority is to help children develop a sense of identity and a cultural understanding based on their historical heritage and the heritage of others. Exploring their own and other people’s cultures in modern multicultural Britain will encourage the children to be tolerant, open minded and informed.


We aim to make children aware of historical figures and to know about significant events in British history and the wider world (British and Ancient), appreciating how things have changed over time. We want to ensure that the children know how Britain developed as a society.


Through the subject we will encourage the children to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement. It will allow them 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.




We follow the ‘Kapow Primary’s’ scheme of work (with bespoke local elements – mining.)


Topic knowledge is covered in each of our units, helping pupils to understand the period being studied, however this knowledge is not necessarily progressive and the need to memorise this knowledge may not extend beyond the topic in question.Topic knowledge (or ‘fingertip knowledge as it is referred to in the Ofsted research review series: history) does have an important role in history learning however as it enables pupils to develop their Chronological awareness and understanding of Substantive concepts in different contexts.


Kapow’s scheme of work fulfils the statutory requirements of the National curriculum (2014).


Kapow Primary History scheme of work has been designed as a spiral curriculum with the following key principles in mind:
Cyclical: Pupils return to the same disciplinary and substantive concepts during their time in primary school.
Increasing depth: Each time a concept is revisited, it is covered with greater complexity.
Prior knowledge: Upon returning to each concept, prior knowledge is utilised so pupils can build on previous foundations, rather than starting again.


The diagram below shows the complex interplay between understanding substantive knowledge and disciplinary knowledge which is referred to in the Ofsted research review: ‘knowledge of the past must be shaped by disciplinary approaches in order to become historical knowledge.’ The Kapow Primary Scheme uses an enquiry-based model so that children learn key substantive knowledge using the disciplinary knowledge and methods that historians use to find out about the past.

The Kapow Primary scheme recognises the importance of developing children’s understanding of substantive concepts and consequently this is a strand which runs throughout our history curriculum.


There are five strands that run throughout the scheme of work which are:

    • Topic knowledge
    • Chronological awareness
    • Substantive concepts
    • disciplinary concepts
    • historical enquiry


How the scheme develops disciplinary concepts

An understanding of the key disciplinary concepts which underpin the study of history supports the children in
broadening their skills, knowledge and understanding.


The strands below are run through each and every unit:

  • Change and continuity: Children identify and explain change and continuity across periods of history, focusing on chronology. They refer to the timeline throughout each unit, looking at sequencing, intervals between events and the duration of each key event
  • Similarities and differences:Children identify similarities and differences across periods of time. They will explain similarities and differences between social, cultural, religious and ethnic diversity in Britain across time
    periods and suggest reasons for these. 
  • Cause and consequences:Looking into the reasons for, and results of, historical events and analysing these, children develop an understanding of cause and consequence. Children explain the reasons for and results of historical events, situations and changes.
  • Historical significance: Considering what makes events and people significant in their historical context and the present day, children compare significant people and events across different time periods and explain the significance of these.
  • Sources of evidence: Children use a range of different sources to investigate the past identifying
    whether they are primary or secondary sources. They use sources of evidence to build up a picture of the past and can identify the reliability and limitations in the sources they use.
  • Historical interpretations:Children will study how historians interpret the past and why events, people and changes were interpreted in different ways. They will learn to evaluate a range of historical
    interpretations, considering their reliability and quality.


Formative assessment
Each lesson contains the ‘Assessing progress and understanding’ section which helps teachers to identify those pupils who are secure in their learning or working at a greater depth in each lesson. These assessments can then be recorded on our History: Assessment spreadsheet which supports the teacher in identifying gaps in learning amongst the class or for individual pupils.

Summative assessment
The disciplinary strands are assessed using a Skills catcher at the end of each unit. This requires children to draw upon their disciplinary knowledge in order to respond to an outcome task.


Each disciplinary concept is assessed at least once by the end of Key stage 1 and once by the end of Key stage 2 using historical enquiry skills. Skills catchers provide teachers with a record of summative assessment as evidence of progression from Key stage 1 to Key stage 2.

Substantive concepts and topic knowledge begin being assessed using an end of unit quiz in Year 2 Spring term and continue to be assessed throughout Key stage 2 units. These units also have formal written assessments available to assess substantive concepts.


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