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History taught at Nutley C of E Primary School is stimulating, motivating and enjoyable, being built on a solid foundation of both knowledge and skills. We enable children to develop an enquiring nature and an ability to construct deductions using primary and secondary sources of evidence. We also intend children to know about the impact of significant individuals, events and discoveries through history.


A series of history lessons are taught at least three times a year which link to the term’s learning journey. Teachers use our progression map to plan lessons that not only ensure that children are building on knowledge and skills but also provide challenge and opportunities for courageous advocacy and historical enquiry. Our concept-driven curriculum ensures that the children’s learning is relevant and children are encouraged to ask and answer questions. We use local, national and global history learning to develop the children’s knowledge, skills and understanding, as well as to inspire debate. We encourage children to learn by experience and we value examination of artefacts, visits to museums, places of historical interest and fieldwork visits.

Year 1 and 2:

  • We teach children to have knowledge and understanding of changes beyond living memory that are significant nationally or globally, and of key individuals and events in the past, such as A. A Milne and famous artists and their lives.

  • To be able to sequence artefacts closer together in time, check with reference book, sequence photographs, describe memories of key events in lives.

  • Use terms related to the passage of time, e.g. before, after, modern, long ago, now, then, and place objects and events in order.

  • Recognise their own lives are different from the lives of people in the past.

  • Recognise why people did things, why events happened and what happened as a result, identify differences between ways of life at different times.

  • Show knowledge and understanding of aspects of the past beyond living memory.

  • Compare two versions of a past event; compare pictures of photographs of people or events in the past; discuss photos, accounts and the reliability of stories.

  • Use a source – observe or handle sources to answer questions about the past on the basis of simple observations.

  • Select from the knowledge of history and communicate in a variety of ways.

  • We also organise trips to places of local historical interest that match our learning themes, such as The Brighton Toy Museum to learn about Toys through time, and Hever Castle to learn about castles.



Year 3 and 4:

  • Pupils are taught about changes in Britain from the Stone Age to the Iron Age, including late Neolithic hunter-gatherers and early farmers, for example, Skara Brae Bronze Age religion, technology and travel, for example, Stonehenge, and Iron Age hill forts: tribal kingdoms, farming, art and culture.

  • We teach children British history, taught chronologically, including the Roman Empire and its impact on Britain. This includes Julius Caesar’s attempted invasion in 55-54 BC, the Roman Empire by AD 42 and the power of its army, successful invasion by Claudius and conquest, including Hadrian’s Wall, British resistance, for example, Boudica, ‘Romanisation’ of Britain: sites such as Caerwent and the impact of technology, culture and beliefs, including early Christianity.

  • We teach Britain’s settlement by Anglo-Saxons and Scots, including Roman withdrawal from Britain in c. AD 410 and the fall of the western Roman Empire, Scots invasions from Ireland to north Britain (now Scotland), Anglo-Saxon invasions, settlements and kingdoms: place names and village life, Anglo-Saxon art and culture, Christian conversion – Canterbury, Iona and Lindisfarne.

  • We teach history in a broader context, including the ancient Egyptian civilisation.

  • To be able to place events from a period studied on a timeline, use terms related to the period and begin to date events, understand more complex terms such as BC/AD.

  • Recognise some of the similarities and differences between periods.

  • To use evidence to reconstruct life in time studies; identify key features and events of time studied; to look for links and effects in time studied; offer reasonable explanations for some events.

  • To look at evidence available; begin to evaluate the usefulness of different sources; to use text books and historical knowledge.

  • To use evidence to build up a picture of a past event, to choose material to present a picture of one aspect of life in time past, to ask a variety of questions, and to use the library and the internet for research.

  • To recall, select and organise historical information and to communicate their knowledge and understanding.

  • To display findings in a variety of ways.

  • We organise trips to places of local historical interest that match our learning themes, such as Fishbourne Villa to study The Romans, and Nutley Windmill to learn about local history.

Year 5 and 6:

  • Children are taught about the Viking and Anglo-Saxon struggle for the Kingdom of England to the time of Edward the Confessor, including Viking raids and invasion, resistance by Alfred the Great and Athelstan, first king of England, further Viking invasions and Danegeld, Anglo-Saxon laws and justice, and Edward the Confessor and his death in 1066.

  • The children conduct a local history study by learning about the Ashdown Forest and significant events that happened through history.

  • Children are taught a study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils’ chronological knowledge beyond 1066, including the legacy of Greek or Roman theatre and culture on later periods in British history, including the present day, and about the Battle of Britain and World War 2 as a significant turning point in history.

  • The children learn about the achievements of the earliest civilizations – an overview of where and when the first civilizations appeared and a depth study of The Indus Valley and The Shang Dynasty of China. They also learn about a non-European society that provides contrasts with British history by studying Mayan Civilization c. AD 900 and Benin (West Africa) c. AD 900-1300.

  • To be able to place current study on a timeline in relation to other studies; use relevant dates and terms such as BC and AD, century and decade; sequence up to 10 events on a timeline.

  • To find out about beliefs, behaviour and characteristics of people, recognising that not everyone shares the same views and feelings; compare beliefs and behaviours with another time studied; write another explanation of a past event in terms of cause and effect using evidence to support and illustrate their explanation; know key dates, characters and events of time studied.

  • To link sources and work out how conclusions were arrived at; to consider ways of checking the accuracy of interpretations – fact or fiction and opinion; be aware that different evidence will lead to different conclusions; confidently use the library and internet for research.

  • Recognise primary and secondary sources; use a range of sources to find out about an aspect of time past; suggest omissions and the means of finding out; bring knowledge gathered from several sources together in a fluent account.

  • To plan and carry out individual research.

  • Select and organise information to produce structured work, making appropriate use of dates and terms.

  • Select aspects of a study to make a display or project to show their historical learning. Use a variety of ways to communicate knowledge and understanding including extended writing.

  • We organise trips to places of local historical interest that match our learning themes, such as Newhaven Fort to learn about British history.



Children develop a secure knowledge of a variety of time periods and an understanding of how these fit together chronologically. They become discerning about the authenticity of historical sources and evaluate different viewpoints. We aim for them to value appropriate primary and secondary sources to think critically about history and communicate their ideas with sensitivity to others viewpoints. We ask them to consider lessons learnt from the past and how they will contribute purposefully and responsibly as global citizens to shape the future.

Click here to see the Progression in History

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