History at Northbrook Primary Academy is led by Mrs Morris


Our Curriculum Drivers

HEART Values – Through their history curriculum, children’s happiness is at heart, as they are engaged, inspired and challenged, encouraged to investigate, research and be ambitious with their thinking. They will be encouraged to understand how history can be used to explain why things are the way there are and to link cause and effect. While participating in history lessons, children will demonstrate the importance of respect, empathy and teamwork.

Literacy and Language – We use stem sentences to build our historical knowledge and practice using historical terminology in every history session to learn to articulate our understanding and explain our knowledge. 

Community and Cultural Diversity- We aim to make links with the wider school and local community to help children understand the subject’s importance. 

Global Citizenship- by providing opportunities for our learning to be based in real-life contexts we engage the children’s curiosity.


Our Aim

At Northbrook, we aim to deliver a history curriculum that allows children to gain a deeper understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. Our curriculum has been designed so that children gain this knowledge as they continue their journey through school. Learning starts in the Early Years and Key Stage One with family history, the local area and key historical people and dates such as The Great Fire of London, The Gunpowder Plot and Remembrance Day.

Our units are carefully sequenced to embed a good sense of time and place as we seek to equip children with a secure understanding of chronology.  Children learn about significant people and events in history and ancient civilisations, seeing where these lie in relation to the wider timeline of history. By studying British History from the Stone Age to Vikings, Roman Britain to World War 2. Such a wide time frame allows our children to identify how Britain influenced and has been influenced by the wider world.

In ensuring high standards of teaching and learning in history, we implement a curriculum that is progressive throughout the whole school. History is teaching focusses on the knowledge and skills stated in the National Curriculum.

The National Curriculum for history aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • Know and understand the history of these islands as a coherent, chronological narrative, from the earliest times to the present day: how people’s lives have shaped this 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; achievements and follies of mankind.
  • Gain and deploy a historically grounded understanding of abstract terms such as ‘empire’, ‘civilisation’, ‘parliament’ and ‘peasantry’ 
  • Understand historical concepts such as continuity and change, cause and consequence, similarity, difference 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 and 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.




Through our History curriculum, we strive to inspire pupils with opportunities to ask questions, think critically, analyse evidence, debate difference and develop a curiosity and fascination about the pass and the effect the past has had on the modern world. We endeavour to teach our children to understand the complexity of people’s lives, the process of change, the diversity between cultures and identify challenges of their time. History in this way is important in broadening children’s horizons, challenging preconceived ideas and developing life skills in order to prepare them for life beyond school.

National Curriculum - History

Our Learning

At Northbrook, our History curriculum has been developed with a focus on knowledge. The critical knowledge is carefully sequence to create a coherent flow and to ensure that children know and remember more. This progression of knowledge ensures ideas build on secure foundations, and deepens as children progress towards subject aspirational goals. Careful sequencing ensures that elements are regularly returned to, supporting pupils to accumulate knowledge over time, feeding previous topics into current topics supported by Practice and Retrieval strategies.

In designing the curriculum, we have considered a broad range of knowledge forms with a focus on being able to articulate substantive and disciplinary knowledge:

  • Substantive knowledge includes the information about the past in terms of people, events, dates, states of affairs and places.
  • Disciplinary knowledge relates to how historians learn about the past and construct their understanding of it.

Knowledge is carefully sequenced to reveal the interplay between substantive and disciplinary knowledge. Abstract threads, which occur frequently throughout studying history such as ‘monarchy,’ develop pupils understanding through planned, repeated encounters through a range of contexts. These first order (such as monarchy, technological advancements or migration and movement) and second order concepts (such as interpreting and questioning or change and continuity) thread through our entire history curriculum.


To further support the teaching and learning in History:

  • A knowledge organiser is used at the start of a new module and contains a key to the knowledge we want our children to remember.
  • We use create a strong program of enquiry-based learning (linked to the historical association) through our lessons to secure the disciplinary concepts needed in history.
  • We use reference lessons to provide a shared understanding of the foundational knowledge. These lessons support children in accessing the rest of the learning sequence.
  • Thinking tasks offer challenge and an opportunity to apply learning.
  • All of our history units are cumulatively built and connected through the substantive concepts.


Early years foundation stage

We believe that all learning begins in EYFS. Our curriculum is closely linked with the Early Years Framework to ensure children in EYFS are achieving those early skills within the subject, which will then enable them to continue to progress in history as they move through school.

Our EYFS curriculum is carefully mapped to provide the foundation skills of “understanding the world” and the concept of “past and present” that children need to help them succeed going through into Year 1 and beyond. Learning is linked to core texts, significant people and events, with planned learning opportunities carefully mapped to create long lasting, meaningful learning experiences.

Additionally, planning and teaching in history is fully inclusive ensuring that all children can access the curriculum at their level. Skills and related vocabulary are progressively built upon as children journey through our school. Cross-curricular links are emphasised, enabling the children to apply their skills and knowledge in other areas of the curriculum.



Children are assessed against our curriculum endpoints based on the knowledge organisers for each unit. Teachers use a range of ongoing assessments to judge children’s key knowledge and understanding of history and ability to apply their historical enquiry skills to a range of situations. Through a variety of different methods: small assessment tasks, retrieval practice, low-stake quizzes, classroom responses a teacher judgement is created based around the year group end points for history.

Knowledge organisers: 





Subject Monitoring

Leaders monitor teaching and learning through pupil voice, staff questionnaires as well as book looks and learning walks and using the online app See Saw to record evidence of learning. The development of the children in school is also monitored through daily informal conversations.

As a result of our whole curriculum, we expect to see all children achieve well by developing knowledge and skills across the curriculum.  But we understand that art brings more than this, and aim to ensure that all children will:

  • develop lifelong learning behaviours that help them continue to create and explore in history
  • appreciate the possibility of history and archaeology as a career and give them the opportunity to have success in modern Britain.
  • be responsible global citizens and courageous advocates of our community through the HEART Values we have instilled in them during their time in school.
  • leave our school, fully equipped for the next stage in their learning