History - Leighton Academy

Year 1 have been studying Florence Nightingale
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Y1 - Florence Nightingale - image 1
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What does History look like at heckmondwike Primary School?

At Heckmondwike Primary School our intent is to provide a rich and varied History curriculum that has been designed to inspire our pupils’ curiosity and fascination about Britain’s past and the wider world. We aspire for our children to develop into active learners who have a passion for History and are equipped with the skills to think and make decisions as historians now and in their futures. 

The study of our History curriculum covers all the skills, knowledge and understanding set out in the National Curriculum 2014. The intent of the History curriculum is outlined and detailed in the History Progression Map which shows the knowledge and skills taught. Our curriculum is enriched by exciting and meaningful opportunities to inspire our children to be thoughtful, reflective and curious historians. It makes links to our wider local area to enable children to develop a deep understanding of the rich history around them; from our town of Heckmondwike to beyond. This supports our children to develop perspective of how our locality is part of the story of history and helps pupils to gain a sense of their own identity within a social, political, cultural and economic background.


At Heckmondwike Primary our History curriculum is planned in line with the knowledge and skills outlined in the National Curriculum through KS1 and KS2.

Our Foundation classes follow the Early Years Foundation Stage framework. 'Understanding the World' involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment. In KS1 and KS2, we aim to follow a topic-led approach to our curriculum and whilst History is taught discreetly, it has close links to other subjects. This ensures that history knowledge and skills are developed within a context our pupils can relate to.

Our History topics begin with a ‘’what we already know discussion” so that teachers can gain an understanding of the children’s starting points of the topic, along with their initial questions and inquiries. This informs lesson planning which is used alongside the progression of knowledge and skills document and long-term planning. We present our children with the opportunities to deepen their understanding further in ways that cannot always be replicated in the classroom. Through historical enquiry our children are able to ask questions, select and evaluate evidence and to make judgements about the past. We are developing opportunities for our children to be able to revisit key facts and information on a regular basis through retrieval activities and these ensure that the knowledge is retained in their long-term memory. The key knowledge and skills of each topic have been identified and consideration has been given to ensure progression throughout the school. We are also developing opportunities to ensure that through the use of clearly-displayed timelines, children are able to contextualise their learning and begin to draw comparisons and contrasts through periods of time.


Our aim for our History curriculum is to develop independent thinkers, who are excited and inspired by the past and understand that their decisions and actions play a part in shaping the future. By the end of KS2, we want our children to be able to use a wide range of historical sources to ask and answer questions about the past and be able to understand the limitations of different types of resources so that our learners are prepared for the challenges of Key Stage 3.

Our curriculum enables children to develop a chronological understanding of British history from the Stone Age to the present day. They will have had opportunities to draw comparisons with the achievements of the earliest civilizations, study the non-European societies of Mayan civilization, Ancient Egypt and the influence of Ancient Greece on the wider world. Children will have an understanding and perspective about our locality and some of the challenges and achievements that have shaped the local area in which we live. We measure the impact of our History curriculum through monitoring work, listening to the children’s attitudes about history through pupil voice, by taking learning walks and book look analysis.

History Timeline.

Please click here for a link to tour History timeline.

History Curriculum Overview

History: Progression of skills


Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4

Year 5

Year 6

Chronological knowledge & understanding

Sequence events in their life Sequence 3 or 4 artefacts from

distinctly different periods of time

Match objects to people of different ages

Sequence artefacts closer together in time - check with reference book

Sequence photographs etc. from different periods of their life

Describe memories of key events in lives

Place the time studied on a timeline

Use dates and terms related to the study unit and passing of time

Sequence several events or artefacts

Place events from period studied on timeline

Use terms related to the period and begin to date events Understand more complex terms eg BC/AD

Know and sequence key events of time studied

Use relevant terms and period labels

Make comparisons between different times in the past

Place current study on timeline in relation to other studies

Use relevant dates and terms Sequence up to 10 events on a timeline.


Range & depth of historical



Recognise the difference between past and present in their own and others lives They know and recount episodes from stories about the past

Recognise why people did things, why events happened and what happened as a result Identify differences between ways of life at different times

Find out about everyday lives of people in time studied

Compare with our life today Identify reasons for and results of people's actions

Understand why people may have wanted to do something

Use evidence to reconstruct life in time studied

Identify key features and events of time studied

Look for links and effects in time studied

Offer a reasonable explanation for some events

Study different aspects of different

people - differences between men and women

Examine causes and results of great events and the impact on people

Compare life in early and late

'times' studied

Compare an aspect of lie with the same aspect in another period

Find out about beliefs, behaviour and characteristics of people, recognising that not everyone shares the same

views and feelings

Compare beliefs and behaviour with another time studied Write another explanation of a past event in terms of cause and effect using evidence to support and illustrate their explanation Know key dates, characters and events of time studied

Interpretations of history

Use stories to encourage children to distinguish between fact and fiction

Compare adults talking about the past – how reliable are their memories?

Compare 2 versions of a past


Compare pictures or photographs of people or events in the past

Discuss reliability of photos/ accounts/stories

Identify and give reasons for different ways in which the past is represented

Distinguish between different sources – compare different versions of the same story Look at representations of the period – museum, cartoons etc

Look at the evidence available

Begin to evaluate the usefulness of different sources

Use text books and historical knowledge

Compare accounts of events from different sources – fact or fiction Offer some reasons for different versions of events

Link sources and work out how conclusions were arrived at Consider ways of checking the accuracy of interpretations – fact or fiction and opinion

Be aware that different evidence will lead to different conclusions Confidently use the library and internet for research

Historical enquiry

Find answers to simple questions about the past from sources of information e.g. artefacts.

Use a source – observe or handle sources to answer questions about the past on the basis of simple observations.

Use a range of sources to find out about a period Observe small details – artefacts, pictures

Select and record information relevant to the study Begin to use the library and internet for research

Use evidence to build up a picture of a past event

Choose relevant material to present a picture of one aspect

of life in time past

Ask a variety of questions

Use the library and internet for research

· Begin to identify primary and secondary sources

Use evidence to build up a picture

of a past event

Select relevant sections of information

Use the library and internet for research with increasing confidence

Recognise primary and secondary sources

Use a range of sources to find out about an aspect of time past Suggest omissions and the means of finding out

Bring knowledge gathered from several sources together in a fluent account

Organisation & communication

Communicate their knowledge through:


Drawing pictures Drama/role play

Making models…..


Using ICT


Recall, select and organise historical information

Communicate their knowledge and understanding.

Select and organise information to produce structured work, making appropriate use of dates and terms.

Knowledge Organisers

Please click on the links below to see what new learning will be taking place each half term. Often there will be new skills which children will develop, along with key vocabulary. There will often be questions which we will use to get children thinking and carrying out discussions. We will also use these to gauge childrens' understanding and their aquisition of new knowledge.

Autumn 1:

Autumn 2:          Year 1

History curriculum on Balance

At Heckmondwike Primary School we use a school improvement toolkit called Perspective Balance, where the curriculum content for every subject is kept. Please click here to see the History curriculum in Balance.