History For Life at Holgate Academy


Our curriculum:

  • Inspires all children to be curious, ask questions and enquire about the past in Britain and the wider world.
  • Supports the development of coherent and chronological knowledge from ancient history to the modern day.
  • Provides children with the essential skills needed to be successful historians who can use and evaluate evidence
  • Enables children to develop a broad understanding of the complexity of people's lives and historical events.
  • Equips children with the relevant substantive and disciplinary knowledge needed to be lifelong learners, igniting a love of history.

Throughout the history curriculum at Holgate, our children will develop these key historical skills:

  • Critical thinking skills so that children can use logic to ask the right questions to satisfy personal curiosity and enquiry.
  • Communication skills so that children can explain and inform and record. Our wider curriculum supports high standards of written and spoken English.
  • Read critically so that they can search for clues in texts, documents and images. Our wider curriculum supports high standards in reading.
  • Find and retrieve evidence using both primary and secondary sources.
  • How to treat sensitive evidence carefully and responsibly.
  • Develop keen judgement and make reasoned decisions so that they can make moral and ethical choices.
  • Be objective and get as close to the truth as possible and not allow personal bias to sway findings.
  • Develop integrity, determination and empathy so that they are able to understand why others have acted in a certain way.

Our curriculum enables all children to:

  • Know and understand the history of Britain as a coherent, chronological narrative, from the earliest times to present day.
  • Know and understand how people's lives have shaped our nation and how Britain has influenced and been influenced by the wider world.
  • Know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations; the expansion and dissolution of empires; characteristic features of past non-European societies and achievements and follies of mankind.
  • Gain and deploy a historically grounded understanding of abstract terms such as 'empire', 'civilisation', parliament' and 'democracy'.
  • Know and understand historical concepts such as continuity and change, cause and consequence, similarity, different and significance, and use them to make connections, draw contrasts, analyse trends, frame historically-valid questions and create their own structured accounts, including written narratives ad analyses.
  • Understand the methods of historical enquiry, including how evidence is used rigorously to make historical claims, and discern how and why contrasting arguments and interpretations of the past have been constructed.
  • Gain historical perspective by placing their growing knowledge into different contexts, understanding the connections between local, regional, national and international history; between cultural, economic, military, political, religious and social history; and between short- and long-term timescales.


In history we teach a fully inclusive curriculum that inspires all children to be inquisitive about the past. We have designed our curriculum around a literacy rich, strong vocabulary base with enrichment opportunities sequenced throughout.

Subject leadership teams have identified key substantive and disciplinary knowledge for each year group which is embedded in children's long-term memory using a range of different strategies. Concepts and ideas are often revisited to ensure children know and remember previous learning.

In EYFS and Key Stage 1, children start by learning about their local and personal history. This allows them to have first-hand experiences meet local people and look at modern artefacts. Children start to develop an understanding of chronology using vocabulary like past, present, before and after. They learn to compare and contrast people and events of the past and present.

In Key Stage 2, children build on their prior knowledge and continue to develop a chronological understanding of British, local and world history. Children are encouraged to ask questions and think critically in order to develop a vast knowledge of history. They are also taught how to use primary and secondary sources in order to build this understanding.

In each year group, a series of sequenced lessons are planned to ensure knowledge is taught in small steps. The objectives are a mixture of knowledge and skills. Key enrichment opportunities have also been planned so children have a large number of wider historical experiences. These include crafting 17th century London houses with the Nomad Rangers in Forest School and a mummification workshop at the World Museum in Liverpool.

Each history lesson starts with a recap of prior knowledge. This comes in many different forms, from low stakes quizzes to filling in words in a stem sentence. This is to ensure that previously taught knowledge in constantly revisited. Recap starters are scaffolded appropriately to ensure all children access this knowledge. Within the lesson, new learning is modelled and scaffolded to allow new knowledge to be connected with wider knowledge. Particular emphasis is put on modelling key vocabulary, knowledge and skills.


By the time children leave Holgate, they are ready for the next step of their learning. Our curriculum provides them with essential historical knowledge, skills and vocabulary as well as a coherent understanding of chronology and how history impacts our modern lives. This enables pupils to embark successfully into secondary school, the Key Stage 3 curriculum and beyond as knowledgeable historians, equipped for the modern world with a lifelong love of learning.

History Long Term Map

History Curriculum Document