Learning within history fires pupils’ curiosity about the past in Britain and the wider world. Pupils consider how the past influences the present, what past societies were like and what beliefs and cultures influenced people’s actions. As they do this, pupils develop a chronological framework for their knowledge of significant events and people.

In history, pupils find evidence, weigh it up and reach their own conclusions. To do this they are encouraged to research, sift through evidence, and engage in active discussion - skills that will prepare them for adult life. We aim to bring history to life by immersing children in realistic experiences both in school and on exciting educational visits linked to our topic areas. Children have a real understanding of their place in history and concepts of when events happened in relation to each other are reinforced. Our History curriculum is designed to ignite children’s curiosity about the past through a topic-based approach and hands on experience wherever possible.  


At Maidwell we achieve this by: 

  • Teaching history regularly. Children cover two history topics each year;
  • Carefully structuring historical concepts so that children revisit and build on their knowledge;
  • Structuring key knowledge throughout the curriculum, threading together key historical concepts such as understanding chronology, significance, legacy and everyday life;
  • Teaching specific historical skills to equip children to ask pertinent questions about the past, analyse evidence, thinking critically, appreciate different perspective and develop informed judgements;
  • Encouraging children to think like historians;
  • Identifying key vocabulary and knowledge;
  • Ensuring regular and effective retrieval practice;
  • Enriching the curriculum through experiences, visits and trips;
  • Re-teaching skills throughout the children’s time in school. Skills are revisited and honed in a spiral curriculum, which progresses in terms of depth and challenge, to build on the children’s previous learning;
  • Fostering an enjoyment and appreciation of history and how Britain has been influenced over time;
  • Celebrating effort, progress and achievement in history through displays, exhibitions and enrichment activities, such as trips out and competitions.


By the end of each year, children have gained the substantive knowledge (knowledge of established historical facts) and disciplinary knowledge (knowledge of the methods used in history to establish facts) in the skills and core knowledge statements for that year group.

Children will have been exposed to a rich hinterland of contextual and broader knowledge, information, examples, illustrations and experiences to support their learning.

In Year 1, the children study childhood and the history of school, with projects mainly focusing on the recent past and the Victorian era. Year 2 focuses on locally, nationally and internationally significant people from the past and the role of the monarchy in the United Kingdom through time.

In Lower Key Stage 2, the children study British history in chronological order, including prehistory and the Celts, the Roman Conquest, the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms and the Viking invasions and settlements. The children then begin to explore world history, exploring the civilisations of ancient Sumer, ancient Egypt and the Indus Valley.

In Upper Key Stage 2, the children continue to explore ancient civilisations, including Chinese dynasties and ancient Greece. In Year 6, the children study more recent history, including the causes and events of both World Wars. They also study the Kingdom of Benin and the history of the enslavement of African people.

Please refer to our Long-Term Programme for details on when each unit of work is scheduled.