History is a valued part of the curriculum at St. Ann’s Heath, as not only is it made fun and meaningful by being brought to life through immersive creative curriculum topics, it also gives the children a secure knowledge of the people, cultures, events and contexts from learning about a range of historical periods throughout their time at school, including Ancient Egypt, the Stone Age, the Mayans and World War 2. This helps children 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. The teaching and learning of history plays an essential part in preparing the children of St. Ann’s Heath for living in the modern world by teaching them skills that will be essential throughout their lives. History is concerned with sequence, time and chronology, allowing children not only to make chronological links, but also links to modern day and how the present has been influenced by the past. This allows the children to understand how our world has changed over time through extensive investigation led by the children themselves using a range of sources in order to gather information and to follow lines of enquiry. This gives the children the ability to ask and answer valid historical questions using an extensive base of historical knowledge and vocabulary they acquire, as well as draw conclusions and explain their findings using evidence from their learning.
History is taught through the integration of historical topics into units of learning as part of our creative curriculum. This is done in a variety of interesting and creative approaches that immerse the children in their learning, such as using a class text which makes historical links to what the children are learning, watching historical documentaries or films, and using re-enactment or drama in order to imagine what the world was like at the point in history they are learning about. The children have access to a range of sources, both primary and secondary, and teachers make great use of sources available from local museums, such as Chertsey museum, which provides topical boxes filled with sources for the children to explore. The children also explore and make links to local history across the units that they study. For example, in Year 6, the topic of Victorians links to local history and children are able to explore and learn more about local Victorian history and buildings, as well as identifying how the local area has changed over time. As well as this, there are several trips the children are able to go on, which allow them to be immersed in historical learning and enquiry, allowing them to put themselves in the shoes of those who lived at the time, such as a Year 5 Tudors trip to Hooke Court. Units are taught focussing on one particular historical time frame, with repeated reference to chronology to create links with other topics.