'ALWAYS START WITH WHY'
OUR HISTORY INTENT & DESIGN
Our school intent speaks of starting points being absolutely essential and this is an imperative aspect of our history intent. We strongly believe that our planned provision and learning activities in this subject area should be adapted, refined, developed and polished based upon a thematic assessment at the outset and then, in line withour wider philosophy, should involve re-visiting prior learning on entry to a session. Chronology has great emphasis in our history curriculum. We have designed our studies so that we look at a narrow thread i.e. toys, family units, great travellers, animals to aid children's concept of change, age, comparing and contrasting in the early years to year 2. Then we deal with a chronological time/period journey from Romans to modern day which broadens their understanding of time from year 3 onwards. Within this we aim to position a careful comparison of two contrasting ancient civilisations. Within all of these, we are committed to ensuring our unique local history forms part of the knowledge development in our children.
SO OUR GOALS & LATEST WORK ARE.....
I have four central goals for our new 'When I Grow Up...' history curriculum:
* ensure our study of history builds chronologically as an essential part of progression. Threads in EYFS/KS1 and broad time/period studies in KS2.
* ensure we meet our intention of embedding our unique local history within every year of the curriculum;
* ensure we can compare and contrast ancient civilisations through well placed and planned studies;
* we must ensure that our elicitation work or 'diagnostic assessment' approach at the outset of themes, units and within session is deployed and is evidently impacting upon subsequent planning and provision. (I will be directly monitoring this as a major priority.)
I have been spending the phase one and phase two development plan working with senior leaders on each of these four goals. We have stage one: 'What we teach' in place, the progression document (now updated with new EYFS Framework elements as our baseline) is complete so now the staff are in stage two: 'How we teach'. Everything is a work in progress. A new curriculum takes years to create and in truth should never sit still or never stop evolving. Daring to do and learning from mistakes has never been more true than when developing a curriculum fit for Mayfield children and their needs.
At this moment, I am scrutinising planning to consider the prominence of vocabulary and questions within there and then pursuing this in the classroom and most importantly how these are formed based upon what the teachers learn through their chosen diagnostic assessment systems. I am also beginning to see the initial outcomes from the first term of our stage two 'how we learn' curriculum process. Finally, I am developing a new Curriculum Map to ensure coverage and progression is clearly evident across all aspects and year groups - in particular looking at how prior knowledge is reinforced and then built upon.
Oh and I am currently designing brain gym mats to assist with the daily revision and consolidation of core knowledge across school. This includes key knowledge and vocabulary for each year group. I am a busy man at the moment!