In EYFS we aim to provide opportunities for pupils to build a foundation and form historical awareness by:


  • Developing a sense of understanding of their own life-story and family’s history.
  • Encouraging pupils to form connections between the features of their family and other families.
  • Providing opportunities for pupils to compare and contrast characters from stories through figures from the past.
  • Providing opportunities for pupils to understand the past through settings, characters and events encountered in books read in class and storytelling.
  • Stimulating discussions for pupils to comment on images of familiar situations in the past.
  • Supporting learners to identify similarities and differences between things in the past and now, drawing on their experiences and what has been read in class.



In KS1 we aim to develop and transfer historical skills with focus towards:


  • Enabling learners to know about significant events beyond living memory and appreciate how and why things have changed over time.
  • Developing an understanding of the lives of significant individuals in the past.
  • Helping pupils understand significant historical events, people and places in their own locality along with the changes within living memory in national life.
  • Fostering and maintaining an interest and curiosity of the lives of significant individuals in the past who have contributed to national and international achievements and compare some aspects of life in different periods. 


At Catherine Infant School, history has a clear learning journey across the whole school. The curriculum provides a broad, balanced and differentiated approach to learning.

History is taught through a topic based approach, to encourage development of both enquiry skills and historical knowledge that are transferable and equip pupils appropriately to explore the foundations of life-long historians. We develop pupils to become independent and evaluative thinkers who have empathy for how others lived. This will develop an awareness, respect and curiosity for different cultures, societies and ultimately the past.

Pupils will have opportunities to develop their vocabulary, participate and adopt different forms of discussion, ask questions and work collaboratively. History is inclusive and accessible to all learners, regardless of individual starting points. Historical knowledge and skills will be taught continually and progressively, so that learning is retained and embedded into our pupils’ long-term memory.



In EYFS, history is planned coherently in line with the Development Matters Framework 2021 by mainly focusing on the specific areas of learning ‘Understanding the World’ in conjunction with the prime area ‘Communication and Language’. We provide opportunities for pupils to build foundations by reflecting on the Characteristics of Effective Teaching and Learning through:

  • Establishing opportunities for pupils to ask and answer ‘how’ and ‘why’ questions in response to stories or events.
  • Encouraging pupils to identify similarities and differences.
  • Developing exposure towards retrieving information through books, the internet and people.

In planning and guiding what pupils learn, we reflect on the development of pupils and adjust our practice to ensure historical content is purposeful and meaningful to pupils ongoing experiences.


All EYFS classrooms provide opportunities for quality discussions amongst learners, which are stimulated through teacher input each week depending on the focused topic including families, transport, story characters and the royal family.  Each term pupils are exposed to relevant information in the classroom through well-planned PowerPoints, books and small world characters. Pupils are also provided with talk opportunities throughout the day in the classroom to develop awareness towards the different tenses including past, present and future.


A large amount of adult-led interactions are elaborated upon through outdoor provision. The provision is carefully planned for with focus towards the types of resources and relevance to topic learning. This typically may comprise of adopting the roles of significant people such as the royal family, story character puppets and visuals to prompt and stimulate discussions. Through the quality interactions, pupils also develop awareness towards chronology by understanding the different tenses and applying their knowledge in wider play through incidental learning which is appropriately supported by an adult.



The coverage of history in KS1 enables pupils to acquire an understanding of time, events and people in their memory. The skills are revisited and consolidated upon from EYFS to help pupils build on prior knowledge alongside introducing new content.

We have designed a curriculum that provides opportunities for pupils to grasp concepts and understand the passing of time to then anticipate where the events studied fit within the chronological framework.

History is taught discretely in KS1 through topic. We have planned a  series of lessons for each year group which will offer structure, meaning and narrative. The revision and introduction of key vocabulary is built into each lesson. This vocabulary is then included in display materials and additional resources to ensure that pupils are allowed opportunities to repeat and revise this knowledge incidentally.

Typically, there are two topics that are studied each in year 1 and 2. In year 1, pupils will look at changes of toys and during the latter part of the year study about the great fire of London. In year 2, pupils will learn about King Richard III followed by Christopher Columbus and Neil Armstrong.

Lessons in KS1 provide a range of learning opportunities for pupils through WOW days, whole-school assemblies, exploring artefacts, adopting roles of significant people e.g archaeologists, parent mornings and oracy tasks to emphasise on applying and developing meaning with historical vocabulary. 


  Learning Cycle 1 Learning Cycle 2 Learning Cycle 3 Learning Cycle 4 Learning Cycle 5


Year 2


Question: Is a car park burial fit for a King? (Richard III)   Question: Who made the most significant journey? (Christopher Columbus or Neil Armstrong)    


Year 1


    Question: How have toys changed through the years?   Question: What was great about the Great Fire of London?




Topic: My family

The Baby Mouse (Pie Corbett text)

Topic: Transport (now and then)

Topic: Spring (winter to spring)

Topic: Kings and Queens




Topic: My family Topic: Animals and plants    

Topic cycle question: Why do things change?