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‘A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.’ Marcus Garvey
The National Curriculum states History should ‘help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. It should inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past.’
It also states that history has a broader influence in that it ‘helps pupils 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.’ (DFE Statutory Programmes of Study).
At St Gregory’s Catholic Primary School we aim to immerse our children in the past and engage them, fostering their curiosity and building a sense of awe in the past. We have worked hard to create a bespoke curriculum which not only allows our children to learn about some of the fascinating events of the past, but also the skills of empathy, enquiry and discussion.
History is a fascinating subject, which can both give us an idea of the progress that has taken place over time in the past and also help us to identify direction for further advancement in the future.
We want our children at St Gregory’s to know key events and where they sit within a historical chronology. But we also want them to question why? How? What if?
As they advance the school, children should increasingly become ‘historical detectives’. Not only looking at and using sources, but thinking critically about their implications and value as well as sifting through the murky waters of fact and opinion.
History provides excellent opportunity for cross curricular links such as holding debates, understanding where in the world certain events took place and why, putting themselves in the situation of others; developing skills of empathy and also learning how and when to be objective when investigating and looking for fact.
These cross curricular links are capitalised as much as possible. At the end of their historical journey with us, we hope that are children are fascinated by the past of Britain and the wider world, understand the complexity and diversity of society and begin to understand their own identity and the challenges of their time.