Teaching history at Key stage 1

keystage 1

Welcome to the Key Stage 1 section of Keystage history where you will find masses of advice on how to make KS1 history lessons fun and how to help pupils to take their first steps into the fascinating world that is the past. You will be helped to design and plan an exciting primary history curriculum in line with the requirements of the 2014 National Curriculum taking into account the difficult areas of assessment and progression in history.You also will be helped to make the most of history’s contribution to the whole curriculum by being shown cutting edge practice in the areas of cross-curricular planning, literacy, thinking skills and creativity.

If it is imaginative ideas for KS1 history lessons you are looking for, then you will definitely want to spend time in the teaching section with its hundred great primary history teaching strategies and in the learning section with its wide range of imaginative approaches and brilliant ideas for products that children will love.As a subject leader, you will find easily accessible advice that is ‘right on the money’. Years of helping hundreds of infant teachers with their history planning, resourcing, and monitoring in history, has enabled me to know exactly what is needed, and which support strategies really work.

KS1 Medium Term Planner for Spreading the Word: Caxton to Bell

The ‘significant people’ element of the KS1 history curriculum now requires pupils to compare achievements of individuals within a linked theme - in this case communication in a topic called ‘spreading the word’. We have chosen Caxton and Bell, rather than Berners-Lee who, although mentioned...
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Caxton and Bell – KQ1 – Caxton

Following a mysterious PowerPoint slow reveal in which pupils look for clues to Caxton’s fame, pupils are given a brief illustrated summary of the key moments in his life which are consolidated with a sequencing activity. Pupils then make a series of more creative tableaux...
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Teaching about the past in EYFS

Preparing for the new EYFS framework in September 2021

Although most schools and settings prefer not to refer to history as a discrete subject on the Early Years curriculum, there is always a lot of talk about the past, often through the use of story books....
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Mary Anning – KQ1 – Why do we remember Mary Anning?

This introductory session attempts to place Mary's life in a broader context of time and place and to whet pupils' appetite, without telling much of the story of her life. This follows in the next session. key to the introduction is the use of sources...
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KS1 Medium Term Planner: Louis Braille

The current history curriculum at KS1 asks schools to provide a little more coherence in their choice of significant people to study, suggesting that they might be linked by theme. I agree with this improvement. Here we have a possible theme of ‘our senses’ or...
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Mary Seacole – KQ5 – What made Mary so special? NEW

A short session aimed at generating adjectives to capture the special qualities that Mary had and to provide examples of where she exhibited those characteristics.

Learning objectives

- Pupils can list at least 3 adjectives to describe her distinctive character - Pupils understand that Mary was exceptionally kind...
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Remembrance Day: Key Stage 1

In this section of the site, a lesson and an interactive  presentation are featured.  The first Outstanding Lesson looks at the question: "What are memories and which things do we all remember at different times of year?"  It focuses on the concept of memory using...
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Teaching the Gunpowder Plot to Key Stage 1

Ever since the Gunpowder Plot was included in the Programme of Study for Key Stage 1, there have been howls of protest from infant teachers who protest that it is futile trying to teach KS1 pupils the motivation behind Guy Fawkes' actions.  Whilst I do...
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Gunpowder Plot – Key Stage 1

If you are teaching about Bonfire night, Guy Fawkes or the Gunpowder Plot you will find the planning advice and fully resourced Outstanding Lessons provided here of particular value.  The first lesson is called A moving story.  Pupils hear the story of the Gunpowder Plot...
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KS1 History Planning for Going to the Seaside topic

Medium term planning and planner for Going to the Seaside KS1

This history topic has been designed to be taught in Year 1 Term 3 and the literacy links make that assumption but there is plenty of challenge for Y2 pupils as well.  The downloadable planner...
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Teaching the Wright Brothers as a Famous Person in Key Stage 1

The Wright brothers offers an exciting opportunity for pupils to explore a topic that should engage their interest, provide plenty of opportunities for drama and creative thinking and should fit well into a cross-curricular topic plan. Pupils live in a highly technologically-driven world, so this...
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Planning for a cross-curricular topic on Going to the Seaside

This advice with associated downloadable resource below is for KS1 teachers planning a cross-curricular topic and focuses on how to integrate history, geography, literacy and ICT. Start the topic with a brief discussion with the children about where they are going on their summer...
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