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We aim to create a firm foundation for a lifetime of learning by helping learners to develop an understanding of general chronology, make conceptual links between different periods of history, guided by the subject schema, and to see how different periods of history enhance and affect their lives today.

Read our:

History Curriculum Aims (schemas for learning -endpoints) 

History Curriculum Overview

Medium Term Planning document 

History Schema Progression Document


Pupils can only make sense of history if they have a clear understanding of chronology.

Each history unit at Bishop Gilpin begins with an understanding of the chronology of the unit: where this sits in a timeline in relation to what they have learnt already and also to their own lives.

There is a focus on the language and terminology of time (e.g. before, after, AD, BC etc), the sequencing of events and the sense of duration of a period.

Historical Enquiry

To allow our pupils to aspire to think like historians, we provide them with the opportunities to use methods and techniques used by real historians.
Our pupils use a range of evidence to draw conclusions about events and developments in history. They have the opportunity to think critically about different sources and to analyse the effectiveness and reliability of these sources. Pupils draw on experiences in previous years to support their ability to do this.

Change (and Continuity) Over Time

It is important for pupils to realise how things have changed, and stayed the same, between the time of study and the modern day.
Pupils look analytically at how things in their local area have been affected by the decisions and ideas of those from the past.

Cause and Effect

Through the history curriculum, pupils understand why key events happened and what the impact of them was, both at the time and afterwards. This is important as it helps pupils to make links between the cause and effect of actions in their life to a wider ranging context. 

Pupils discover how the decisions of a few people affected so many people over a period of time.

Similarity and Difference

Pupils learn to make links between different places and different people in key parts of history. They look at the way people lived and the way they acted.
Pupils are taught to compare and contrast the similarities and differences and analyse the reasons for contrast and continuity in different periods of history.

Impact on the World, Britain and Me

When studying about any era in history, pupils learn about how the actions and ideas of people from the past have affected our lives, and the lives of others today. 

To understand our political ideologies originated in ancient Greece and that the idea for central heating came directly from the Romans allows pupils to understand why studying history is so important in understanding today.

History Curriculum Approach

The key NC strands in History, the EYFS framework and Development Matters  have informed our schemas and our curriculum planning, leading to a direct impact on children's learning as evidenced in their learning journals.

Developing a sense of 'general chronology'- through ongoing exposure to timelines- is a priority across the school. Children use personal, topic specific and more general timelines to sequence periods of history and key events within topics.

As an overarching principle of curriculum planning, the first order concepts that may help to shape our children's understanding of a topic are considered during planning and are often discussed during lessons to give children conceptual links to support their transition into new areas of learning.

At the heart of each history lesson, is the use of second order concepts to acquire and interpret new learning. The schemas at Bishop Gilpin are based on second order concepts that are frequently used by historians to interpret the past. Through using second order concepts, children regularly engage in historical enquiry to acquire new substantive knowledge. Schemas reoccur progressively throughout the school.

To improve the diversity, equality and therefore quality of our History curriculum, we have  consulted with the Black Curriculum, who have supported us in ensuring our history curriculum is representative of our community.

SEND pupils' access to the full History curriculum is ensured by class teachers' consideration during planning and teaching, alongside consultation with support staff.  Further details on the SEND/Vulnerable page.