At Grade Ruan C of E Primary School, we believe that high-quality history lessons inspire children to want to know more about the past, to think as historians and to recognise the way history has shaped our lives today. Our lessons, ensure pupils understand Britain’s past and the wider world. We aim to inspire children to investigate and interpret the past giving them opportunities to do this.
The history curriculum at Grade Ruan uses the local area which enables children to develop a deeper understanding of local history as well as the wider world. Our topics are informed by the National Curriculum, children’s interests and our Christian Values and vision. By linking learning to a range of topics, children have opportunities to investigate, communicate and interpret the past, understand chronology, build an overview of Britain’s past as well as that of the wider world.
The aim of History is for the children to: acquire knowledge and understanding of the world we live in and how this is influenced by significant people and events in the past; to ‘think like a historian’ and engage in purposeful learning whilst instilling our school's Christian values and vision.

We develop children with the following essential characteristics to help pupils 'think like a historian':

  • An excellent knowledge and understanding of people, cultures, events and contexts from a range of historical periods, including significant periods in World and British history.
  • The ability to think critically about history and communicate ideas confidently to a range of audiences.
  • The ability to support, evaluate and challenge their own and others’ views using historical evidence from a range of sources.
  • The ability to think, reflect, debate, discuss and evaluate the past by formulating and refining questions and lines of enquiry.
  • A respect for historical evidence and the ability to make critical use of it to support their learning.
  • A developing sense of curiosity about the past and how and why people interpret the past in different ways.



History is taught in units throughout the year, and we follow the National Curriculum and as part of the teaching and learning process.

The history curriculum is designed for children to develop and progress through core disciplinary concepts to ensure that when they leave our school they will think like historians. The core concepts are:

  • Change, continuity & progress

  • Cause and consequence

  • Significance and diversity

  • Chronological understanding 

  • Interpretations

History lessons are planned coherently to build children’s understanding progressively and chronologically. Lessons develop the children’s understanding of historical concepts.  This spiralling around the concepts helps to build their understanding and helps them to structure the information so their memory also improves. 
Knowledge of abstract concepts (substantive knowledge), such as 'Monarchy' and 'Empire' are built on through the history curriculum through a variety of contexts at local, national and global level. 
All History lessons follow the National Curriculum and are linked to the topic or book genre being taught, allowing the children to build curiosity, ask questions and investigate answers in a variety of ways.
History may be taught as a stand alone lesson when more appropriate.
Each unit allows children to access a range of historical sources, both primary and secondary. This can include, but is not limited to: historical artefacts, books, films, photos.
Timelines are effectively used throughout the school and ensure children can build upon their prior knowledge.
The teaching of History is enhanced where possible by educational visits, visitors to school, museum loans and links with local, national and international organisations.
Where possible, History lessons make links to other subjects such as English, History, Science and Maths.



By the end of Key Stage 2, every pupil at Grade Ruan School will have experienced learning about Cornish Heritage, Britain’s past and the world around us, including significant events and people. Well planned and taught lessons lead to children who develop good conceptual understanding of history.

The use of various resources such as knowledge organisers and timelines, ensures children can think like a historian and develop a solid schema for their future education.  Timelines have a powerful impact ensuring children can see the bigger picture of history and retain and build upon this knowledge over the years, also supporting their education into Key Stage 3 and beyond.

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