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We teach a broad and varied History curriculum, at South Hill, which aims to develop skills and knowledge through the following key areas: 

  • Chronological understanding – we want pupils to have a clear understanding and a growing knowledge of different time periods and how these link to eachother 

  • Knowledge and interpretation – we want our pupils to have a growing knowledge of different societies and periods of time and to begin to understand how historical eras/ civilisations have shaped the world we live in today 

  • Historical enquiry – we want our pupils to be able to use artefacts and sources to learn about the past, to be able to ask interesting questions, to examine the evidence and to develop their own points of view about historical events 


By the end of Year 6, we want our pupils to have a solid chronological understanding of the historical events studied, to have a knowledge of how History has shaped Britain (and the wider world), to be able to think critically and to understand that what has happened in the past is critical to shaping our future.


Golden Threads

As part of our History curriculum, we have carefully mapped out 7 key concepts that weave in and out of our learning. These allow us to build on previous knowledge and to make links between historical periods and events that we have already learnt to those that we are learning now and in the future: 


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Examples of knowledge organisers

We have tailored our History curriculum, in some areas, to reflect our locality and local community so that our pupils have a real sense of how history has shaped who we are today in Hemel Hempstead.  

For example: 

  • In EYFS, we focus on the building blocks to our History curriculum by studying our family 

  • In Year 1, we take a walk around our local streets, focusing on how houses have changed in the last century. 

  • In Year 2, we study our School, how it has changed over time, as well as the local ‘Water Gardens’ 

  • In Year 3, we study the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, who visited our town to open ‘The Queen’s Square’ in Adeyfield in 1952 

  • In Year 4, we study the Romans and look specifically at how they took over St. Albans (Verulamium) and visit the museum, Hypercaust and Roman Walls 

  • In Year 5, we study Hemel Hempstead and look at how it has changed over the past 100 years 

  • In Year 6, we study WW2 and how this impacted our local area 


Trips and theme days:

Our History curriculum is enriched by a number of school trips, theme days and assemblies and these provide excellent opportunities to bring our historical learning to life. Examples are:

  • EYFS - Trip to St. John's Church, Boxmoor and 'Fairy tale castle day'

  • Year 1 - Local homes trip and 'Victorian' theme day

  • Year 2 - Visit by the Fire Brigade (linking to the 'Great Fire of London' topic)

  • Year 3 - 'Stone Age' theme day and visit to Windsor Castle

  • Year 4 - Trip to the Verulamium museum and 'Roman' and 'Greek' theme days

  • Year 5 - Local history walk and  'Viking'' and 'Egyptian' theme days 

  • Year 6 - Trip to the RAF museum and WW2 theme day

Black History month forms an important part of our History curriculum and every year we complete a whole school project which aims to promote and celebrate Black contributions to British society, and to foster an understanding of Black history in general. This year, we focused on each class reading one of the following books: 

  • Fruits  - by Valerie Bloom 

  • Sulwe -  Lupita Nyong'o 

  • Wagari's Tree of Peace - A true story from Africa - Jeanette Winter 


Pupil Voice

“History is really interesting and can tell you things about the past and how we can learn from it for the future.”  Miles – Y5

“I remember doing a Victorian day and learning about school back then. The teachers were really strict!” Iannis – Y3

“I loved our trip to St. Albans to learn more about the Romans! Did you know that Boudicca led a revolt right where we stood in the park!” Rishika – Y4

“I absolutely love learning about History. Our WW2 topic has been so engaging. I’ve loved every minute of it and now I want to learn even more.”  Scott – Y6

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