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Our children develop a complex, chronologically secure, knowledge of local and national history, as well as the history of the wider world, from ancient civilisations to modern day Britain, through the lenses of key substantive concepts including power, invasion, settlement and migration, empire, civilisation, religion, trade, achievements of humankind, society and culture.


Through our enquiry-based approach, we will give our children the skills and confidence to think critically, ask questions, and be able to explain and analyse a range of historical sources and evidence, with ample opportunity to evaluate and discuss how significant events and individuals have shaped the world that we live in today, applying this to their own lives.


Equipped with the skills to carry out their own historical enquiries, our children are regularly immersed in hands-on and meaningful experiences where they ‘live the history’. This includes regular opportunities to explore our local area - rich in significant historical landmarks and events - helping to develop a further sense of who they are, their heritage and what makes their local area unique.


We ensure that our children are exposed to the diversity of societies, and are given the confidence to ask appropriate questions and challenge historical ideals and prejudices. The cross-curricular use of a range of historical fiction and non-fiction texts across the school help to contextualise this.



  • History units are explored 3 times an academic year per year group from 1-6.
  • The following key disciplinary concepts are encountered in different contexts during the study of local, British and world history: Change and continuity, Cause and consequence, Similarities and differences, Historical significance, Historical interpretations and Sources of evidence.
  • Substantive concepts such as power, trade, invasion and settlement, are introduced in key stage 1, clearly identified in lower key stage 2 and revisited in upper key stage 2. 
  • In EYFS, children explore the concept of history by reflecting on key experiences from their own past, helping them understand that they each have their own histories. Then, they engage in activities to compare and contrast characters from stories, including historical figures, deepening their understanding of how individual lives fit into broader historical narratives.
  • A consistent timeline is referred to regularly throughout the school supporting our children in developing secure chronological awareness.
  • We use an enquiry-based approach – each lesson within a unit explores a question for learning (QFL) with the aim of answering a ‘big question’ by the end of the unit. Children are encouraged to follow the enquiry cycle (Question, Investigate, Interpret, Evaluate and conclude, Communicate) when answering historical questions.
  • Entry tickets and knowledge organisers provide regular opportunities to revisit and recall previous learning (either in past years, topics or subjects as applicable) as skills and knowledge progress in complexity. These are mapped out for our teachers in our coverage documents to support their planning.
  • Lessons are designed to be varied, engaging and hands-on, allowing children to experience the different aspects of an historical enquiry.
  • Our teachers are supported with guidance on how to adapt their teaching to ensure that all pupils can access learning for each lesson. Challenge opportunities are also considered to stretch pupils’ learning where appropriate. 
  • Cross-curricular links are included throughout each unit, allowing children to make connections and apply their history skills to other areas of learning.
  • As children progress, they will create their own historical enquiries to study using sources and the skills they have developed.
  • Opportunities to ‘live the history’ through trips and talks/workshops from visitors are planned throughout the year. In addition, History in Action videos explain the careers and work of those in history and heritage-related fields. Historians, archivists, archaeologists, museum curators, teachers and heritage experts discuss their love of history, how they became interested in the subject, how they got into their jobs and what their jobs involve.
  • Extended writing opportunities and exposure to quality topic related texts are planned into the curriculum.
  • Opportunities for children to be exposed to and use higher level vocabulary are mapped out, displayed and referred to regularly in lessons.
  • Teachers have direct access to CPD resources to support each unit to ensure strong subject knowledge before delivery.



Our enquiry-based approach to learning allows our teachers to assess our children against the national curriculum expectations for history. The impact of our history curriculum is evidenced in multiple ways: questions in class, discussions, pupils’ work, answers to retrieval questions/activities, pre and post topic quizzes, as well as through pupil voice.


By the end of each key stage, our pupils will be equipped with the necessary knowledge and skills to enable them to progress to the next, with confidence.


By end of Chartham’s history curriculum, our children will be enquiring learners who ask questions and can make suggestions about where to find the evidence. They will be critical and analytical thinkers who are able to make informed and balanced judgements based on their knowledge of the past.

A member of Inspira Academy Trust, a charitable company limited by guarantee incorporated in England and Wales, with company number 13188733.