Skip to content ↓

What am I going to learn in History?

What am I going to learn in history?

Spring 2024

Reception-Kings and Queens

This unit supports children’s understanding of the past, focusing first on changes within living memory with the present-day monarch (HRH Charles III) and the coronation of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, before exploring the lives of other kings and leaders chronologically.  The children will be introduced to significant national events that took place during this time period, such as the story of King John and the Magna Carta. 

                                                                          Year 1 - Parliament and Prime Ministers

 The children will be introduced to historically significant events that highlight the development of British democracy, including the introduction of the Bill of Rights and the introduction of the first Prime Minister: Robert Walpole. As well as learning about the changing role of Parliament, and the introduction of the office of Prime Minister, the children will also learn about what Parliament and the Prime Minister do today. This includes looking at changes in living memory, such as the change in government/Prime Minister/local MP. Through role play, children will experience what it is like to vote, and how all the votes are counted and the person who has the most votes wins. Children will be encouraged to ask questions and use the important key vocabulary taught. This unit also subtly introduces the disciplinary concept of continuity & change through exploring the declining power of the monarchy and the increasing influence of the Prime Minister and Parliament. 


Year 2 - Powerful Voices

This unit introduces key figures from the past and today, who have fought for human rights: Gandhi (political freedom), Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King Jr (equality for African Americans, freedom from discrimination), Malala Yousafzai (access to education for girls), and Greta Thunberg (climate change activist). This unit builds chronologically on from the history studied in KS1 and covers history spanning from the 19th century until the present day. Previously, children learnt about powerful and significant people in time, such as kings and queens and prime ministers. In this unit, we look at the stories of some significant people who were not born into powerful positions (like a king or queen) but were able to use their voices to spread their beliefs to influence change. Some of the individuals studied in this unit are still alive today and continue to be making changes in the world. The children will learn that historians study the lives of significant people and look at what they say and do and evaluate the contributions they have made to national and international achievements. 

Year 3 - The Anglo-Saxons, Scots and Vikings

The pupils begin the unit by recapping what they have learnt so far about the Romans in Britain. They learn that after the Romans left, a mix of tribes from Germany, Denmark and the Netherlands began to migrate to England. The three biggest tribes were the Angles, the Saxons and the Jutes. This group of people are known today as the Anglo-Saxons. During this period, England was not a united country but was separated into kingdoms, each ruled by different kings. The pupils can apply their geographical knowledge of England to look at Anglo-Saxon kingdoms and locate their school within one of them. They can also apply their knowledge of Europe, including Northern Europe, to locate where the Anglo-Saxons and Vikings originated from. Pupils can apply their historical knowledge when studying ‘Anglo-Saxon Art’. The pupils will learn about the lives of people who lived in this period, how they lived, their homes, their jobs, what they ate and what they did for fun. They will discuss how we know about the lives of people who lived so long ago and learn about primary and secondary sources such as artefacts found at Sutton Hoo, places such as West Stow and the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle. They will also look at the religious beliefs of both the Anglo-Saxons and the Vikings, and how both were gradually converted from their Pagan beliefs to Christianity. Pupils will also learn about the Picts and the Scots. They will discuss how historians find out about these people in the past, and how they engage in historical debate, such as what the symbols on Pictish Stones can tell us. During this unit, the pupils will learn about the Vikings and the significance of Viking long ships that enabled them to travel, trade, raid and invade. They will look at the relationship between the Anglo-Saxons and the Vikings; the battles and the compromises that took place during this period. They will learn about the lives of significant people during this period, such as Alfred the Great, King Canute and Edward the Confessor. 

Year 4 - The Stuarts

Throughout the unit, the children will learn about some of the significant events that took place during this time, such as the English Civil War, the Gunpowder Plot and the Great Fire of London. They will learn that historians use a range of sources to interpret what happened in the past, and use evidence to discuss possible causes, and consequences, of significant events. Children will learn about the lives of the monarchs and leaders during this period. When learning about Oliver Cromwell, children will look at different historical perspectives of him and his time in power. Throughout the unit, the children will look at the political and religious impact that each person had on Britain. Children should be encouraged to draw comparisons/analyse differences between the reigns of each monarch/leader and look at how Britain changed, and/or stayed the same, as a result of their leadership. This unit develops their understanding of the changing role of monarchy and parliament. 




Year 5 - The Victorian Age

  During this unit, the children learn about the significant life of Queen Victoria: both her personal life and some of her decisions as a monarch, including her involvement with the British Empire. In addition to the political context of this time, this unit also delves deeper into the social aspects of Victorian Britain, looking in particular at the lives of the poor. During the unit, children will consider the similarities and differences between the lives of the rich and the poor in Victorian England. Children will have access to primary sources to explore what it was like to live in a Victorian slum or workhouse and discuss how attitudes towards the poor were reflected in new legislation.  The children will also learn about more positive aspects of the Victorian period, looking at the significance of the Great Exhibition and the growth in technology and new discoveries made by the Victorians. This will build on children’s previous learning about the Industrial Revolution. The children will complete the unit looking at the legacy of the Victorians, analysing the similarities and differences between life in the 1900s and life in Britain today and considering the question of what has changed/stayed the same since the Victorian era. Children build on their knowledge of the substantive concepts of monarchy, industrialisation, urbanisation, empire, imperialism and poverty. 


Year 6 - World War II

 Throughout this unit, children will be encouraged to make connections between what they learnt about World War I and other wars in the past. The unit begins by securing essential background knowledge about the war before looking in more depth - including when and where it took place, and who was involved.  The concept, ‘conquer’ will be built upon by looking at the countries conquered by Germany. The children will use their knowledge of the British Empire to understand the significant role that people from across the empire played in supporting the allied forces. The children will look in some depth at the Battle of Britain- a battle fought entirely in the skies and the Blitz- a strategy used by the German air force to try and force Britain to surrender. The role of the empire, and other overseas pilots, will be explored. The unit focuses on the Battle of Britain and the Blitz from a military context. The social context is explored in more detail at the end of the unit when the children look at life on the Home Front.   The children will look in more depth at the role that intelligence and code-breaking played in winning the war. They will learn about the code-breakers at Bletchley Park (75% of them were women), including some significant people who played a vital role in supporting the war effort-Alan Turing and Mavis Batey.  While a significant emphasis of this unit is on Britain and the war, time will also be dedicated to learning about a related event of global significance that took place at that time-the Holocaust. The children will build upon their knowledge of Nazi Germany, and look at what happened following the rise of Hitler and the Nazi party. This unit will introduce a new concept: genocide. They will look at the atrocities committed, interpreting sources with a focus on learning about what life was like for Jewish people at this time. Children will look at the actions of the wartime government and the impact on the lives of people at the time.