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History develops within us a sense of identity set within social, political, cultural and economic relationships, and sparks children’s curiosity and understanding of the challenges and triumphs of people who lived in the past. Our history curriculum represents the diverse nature of our school and celebrates the heritage of our children and families, helping them to put their own lives and current events in to context.

Our History curriculum engenders a curiosity about Britain’s past and that of the wider world. Children are encouraged to ask questions, think critically, weigh evidence and develop judgement in a range of historical contexts. Children learn about the lives of individuals and groups of people from the past, learning to empathise with different people’s viewpoints and analysing important historical events. Children will make links between these events and themselves, thinking about principles that can be applied to their own lives and understanding how past events have shaped the modern world.

We are proud to celebrate Arden’s own place in history, within a locality that offers us rich, tangible historical sources to learn from. 


At Arden we implement a history curriculum that is progressive. We know that the knowledge and vocabulary that children develop in the EYFS, particularly through the ‘Understanding the World’ area of learning, and the Early Learning Goal ‘Past and Present’, enable them to access history content at Key Stage One.

As children make the transition to the National Curriculum in Years 1 - 6, History is taught across a whole term. Leaders and teachers ensure that there is a rigorous focus on the knowledge and skills stated in the National Curriculum, and that this knowledge builds progressively - enabling children to develop skills systematically. Connections underpin our teaching: between subjects, to reinforce learning where appropriate, and outside the classroom, to place learning into broader contexts.

History lessons focus on enabling children to think as historians. Our lesson sequence is guided by the use of sources and focuses on moving children through a series of levels of understanding towards an end goal.

A variety of teaching approaches are used and lessons are carefully planned to include opportunities for children to work as pairs, in groups and independently. We encourage adults and children to use both rich language and precise, subject-specific vocabulary so that children gain excellent understanding in order to reason, articulate and make generalisations.

Building up pupils’ knowledge of substantive concepts is key. They are crucial components for our pupils to gain comprehension of new material and provide a framework for them to make connections, retain and recall information. We seek to ‘generate readiness’ so that children are always prepared for the next phase of their learning.

We currently have a strong focus on History at Arden and this will continue as the subject develops. We continue to work closely with curriculum experts in designing the History curriculum and staff engage in a rigorous programme of ongoing CPD.


Evidence through pupil voice, coupled with outcomes in books, will show that children can confidently articulate and demonstrate their historical knowledge and understanding (including key historical concepts) using the correct vocabulary. Children will be able to make connections and draw contrasts between the different periods and civilisations they have studied.

We scrutinise the efficiency of our teaching approach and its impact on children's knowledge, understanding and progress through: 

  • Unseen final source analysis

  • Whole school moderation to inform assessment criteria and ensure accuracy of judgements

  • Evidence through pupil voice

  • Outcomes in books across the learning journey

  • Termly teacher assessments 

  • Subject leader monitoring

  • Learning walks

  • Lesson drop ins

  • Weekly 'Friday Flicks'


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