Eldon Primary School

Eldon Primary School

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Subject Overview




At Eldon, we want our pupils to gain a coherent understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. We believe that high-quality history lessons inspire children to want to know more about the past and to think and act as historians. By linking learning to a range of topics, children have opportunities to investigate and interpret the past, ask perceptive questions, understand chronology, build an overview of Britain’s past as well as that of the wider world, and to be able to communicate historically. Children will learn to think critically using sources of evidence to support their opinion. They should understand how people’s lives have changed, how diverse societies were, and the challenges that were faced.


There are two key aspects to learning:

Substantive knowledge - this is the subject knowledge and vocabulary used about the past. Common misconceptions are explicitly revealed as non-examples and positioned against known and accurate content. 

Disciplinary knowledge – this is the use of that knowledge and how children construct understanding through historical claims, arguments and accounts. We call it ‘Working Historically.’ The features of thinking historically may involve significance, evidence, continuity and change, cause and consequence, historical perspective and contextual interpretation.


Eldon works alongside the CUSP partnership to support the teaching of History.



The History curriculum is built around the principles of cumulative knowledge. The effect of this cumulative model supports opportunities for children to associate and connect with significant periods of time, people, places and events. Eldon’s vehicles such as the school's timeline, time capsule and 4D immersive room  enhance the teaching and learning of History. Additional trips and visiting experts and volunteers, including Eldon’s Elders provide rich historical experiences for our children.





The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum supports children’s understanding of History through the planning and teaching of ‘Understanding the World’ This aspect is about how children find out about past and present events in their own lives, their families and other people they know. Children are encouraged to develop a sense of change over time and are given opportunities to differentiate between past and present by observing routines throughout the day, growing plants, observing the passing of seasons and time and looking at photographs of their life and of others.  Practitioners encourage investigative behaviour and raise questions such as, ‘What do you think?', ‘Tell me more about?', 'What will happen if..?', ‘What else could we try?', ‘What could it be used for?' and ‘How might it work?'

Use of language relating to time is used in daily routines and conversations with children  for example, ‘yesterday', ‘old', ‘past', ‘now' and ‘then'.




Our focus is on young children developing a sense of time, place and change. It begins with children studying Changes within living memory to develop an understanding of difference over time within concrete experiences of their lives. This chronological knowledge is foundational to the understanding of change over time.


Pupils then study the Lives of significant individuals. Chronology and place in time steers the understanding of the context in which these significant individuals lived. Terms such as legacy are introduced and used within the context of each study. 

In KS1, pupils study our local history through significant events, people and places. 

Events beyond their living memory. Here, pupils draw upon early concepts of chronology and connect it to more abstract, but known, events in the past focusing on the Great Fire of London.




In lower KS2, pupils study the cultural and technological advances made by our ancestors as well as understanding how historians think Britain changed throughout the Stone, Bronze and Iron Ages. Archaeological history guides us to know how early humans were creative, innovative and expert at surviving in changeable environments. Having an in-depth understanding of Iron Age Britain offers solid foundations for the study of how Rome influenced Britain. 

Studies of how Britain was settled by Anglo-Saxons and Scots gives a focus on cultural change and the influence of Christianity. Pupils study how powerful kings and their beliefs shaped the Heptarchy of Anglo-Saxon Britain. There is also a focus on the Struggle for throne of England through a study of the Vikings, their origins, conquests and agreements with English Anglo-Saxon kings to settle and dwell in the region known as Danelaw.



Later in KS2, knowledge of Anglo-Saxons is revisited and used to connect with a study of the Maya civilisation. The study compares advancement of the Maya culture and innovation to that of the Anglo-Saxons around c.AD 900. 


Pupils also study Significant monarchs after 1066. Five kings and queens are a focus of a depth study and comparison, drawing on their beliefs, actions and understanding their legacy. 

Ancient Egyptians and the study of Ancient Greek life and achievements are also studied learning about their influence on the western world. The understanding of culture, people and places are central to these studies. Our History curriculum connects these studies with prior knowledge of what was happening in Britain at the same time. 

Recent history, such as the Battle of Britain for example, is studied in the context of how conflict changed society in the Second World War. Modern history is also studied through units such as the Windrush Generation. Knowing about slavery, Caribbean culture and the injustice of the past enlightens pupils to understand why events happened and how these pioneers faced racism, discrimination and prejudice.




  • Class timetables have been built to ensure a broad and balanced curriculum.  

  • Subjects have been blocked in a spaced retrieval model to support catch up and to build the frequency of History and wider curriculum subjects. This maximises learning time. 


We teach History using the six phases of a lesson.



OVERVIEW OF KNOWLEDGE                                            KNOWLEDGE ORGANISERS

Each unit includes an overview for the teacher                     Knowledge Organisers contain core information 

which details the big idea that pupils will be                          for children to easily access and use as a point

studying, prior knowledge, skills to be taught                        of reference and as a means of retrieval practice.

and common misconceptions.



MAPPING OF KNOWLEDGE                                              KNOWLEDGE NOTES

The sequence of learning makes clear essential                 Knowledge notes are an elaboration in the core

and desirable knowledge, key questions, and task              knowledge found in Knowledge Organisers.

suggestions for each lessons and suggested.                     KnowledgeNotes focus childrens' working memory

cumulative quizzing questions.                                            to the key question that will be asked. It reduces 

                                                                                             cognitive load and avoids the split-attention effect.




Retrieval practice is planned into the curriculum through spaced learning and interleaving and as part of considered task design by the class teacher.  Teaching and learning resources and provided for class Teachers so they can focus their time on subject knowledge and task design.




The units are supported by vocabulary modules which provide both resources for teaching and learning vital vocabulary and provide teachers with Tier 2 and 3 vocabulary with the etymology and morphology needed for explicit instruction details relevant idioms and colloquialisms to make this learning explicit. 

We aim to provide a high challenge with low threat culture and put no ceiling on any child’s learning, instead providing the right scaffolding for each child for them to achieve.




Our History curriculum is high quality, well thought out and is planned to demonstrate progression. Our assessment systems enable teachers to make informed judgements about the depth of pupil learning and the progress pupils make over time.  If children are keeping up with the curriculum, they are deemed to be making good or better progress. In addition, we measure the impact of our curriculum through the following methods: 


  • Questioning

  • Pupil Book Study talking about learning with the children

  • Talking to teachers

  • Low stakes ‘Drop-in’ observations

  • Quizzing and retrieval practise

  • Feedback and marking

  • Progress in book matches the curriculum intent





tes winner 2018