Resources for Primary History

On this page we want to share both resources and ideas to stimulate your own thinking about history in your primary curriculum.

Key Concepts that we thought about included:

  • Chronology (including sequence and duration)
  • Continuity and Change
  • Cause and Consequence
  • Similarity and difference.

To help you to think about these and other aspects of the History National Curriculum, we have created this History Key Words’ list. We think that this will help both your teachers and pupils think carefully about history’s key concepts. All relate to subject specific terms that are used throughout the National Curriculum document. It can be used alongside the document. We have created a highlighted history national curriculum document here that shows the words that we explained.

Please see the summary that we share on the ‘concept led curriculum making’ page of this blog to explain why we feel that a concept led curriculum helps children to ‘think historically’ so that they can use their historical understanding to be more informed about their world.

Stimulus Materials that we used.

Mike Maddison, Lead History HMI gave this keynote presentation about the History in the Primary Curriculum

When creating our materials we found some of the ideas  shared on the School History Project’s Primary Hub to be excellent.

In particular we valued Ian Dawson’s thinking on ‘why is historical enquiry important and his brief introduction to developing chronological understanding. We also liked his ‘human timeline idea and have developed this for the 2014 curriculum – see our resource below.

We also learned a lot from Ann Moore’s historical questions about pictures and would recommend this to you.

We found James Bryon’s ideas about planning for the 2014 curriculum and his example enquiries and planning principles to be really helpful too.

Our Resources

Building on the time-line idea, we have created a teacher timeline that covers the historical periods in chronological order that appear in the History National Curriculum. We think that this will be of great value to your teachers – it will help develop their own historical understanding. Dates and background information are shared in a quick and easy format. we very much hope that this is extra-ordinarily valuable to you all.

We have also developed a school or class timeline for the History NC. Ideas for how this valuable resource could be used include:

  • It could be printed off as one long timeline or broken down into the different eras (different colour card could be used to represent each era).
  • Pupils could add on their own cards when they have researched and studied a particular topic. This would add greater breadth and depth to the timeline.
  • Pupils could also draw pictures on the cards to show a pictorial representation of each event.
  • Pupils could also be given a card as homework to research and present more detail on their event to the class. (A further challenge would be for them to offer an explanation as to why their event was significant.)

 We also found the National Curriculum  Purpose  of stuy and Aims statements to be of  significant value for curriculum making, but perhaps a little challenging for a non-specialist historian to access, so here’s our version of the aims. We think that this could be a useful discussion document to use in your school to clarify the role and purpose of the historical activities that you engage your pupils in.

The other aspect of the History National Curriculum that we grappled with was the focus on significant historical figures. We have to confess that for some of us, our background knowledge on these key figures was a little rusty! So we would like to offer this summary of background information on key historical figures to help develop your own knowledge. We hope that you found it to be as helpful as we did.

Over to you

We very much hope that the materials above help you to create a history curriculum that is engaging and purposeful for your children in your setting, and at the same time we very much hope that the materials help to give your teachers in your school a confidence about what quality learning in history might look like. Please just use the ‘reply ‘ facility on this page if you would like to share any thoughts or resources with us. Enjoy your curriculum making!


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One thought on “Resources for Primary History

  1. Pingback: Welcome | Primary Humanities Project

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