Curriculum Planning

Four points to consider when planning

Key point 1: long term balance of skills and concepts. At the long term planning stage you must plot where you will be developing the key concepts and skills. Not all topics lend themselves to developing the same ideas so someone needs to make informed choices at a whole-key stage level. This will then help you to determine progression within each concept because you know the context in which it will be taking place (see progression section for details). It will also help with assessment, so this needs to be inked in at the long term planning stage.

Key point 2: medium term planning is the centre-piece. For each medium term plan there needs to be key questions which drive the topic and give it its emphasis. These questions need to have their own learning objectives which have been carefully pitched using your knowledge of progression. As there are particular activities that help children reach the objectives, these should be identified and staff encouraged to use them. The resources for these activities need to be made available. So overall, the medium term plan should be strong enough to inform most teachers’ lessons, making the need for lengthy short-term plans redundant.

Key point 3: keep short-term planning short. Most lesson plans should be cross-referenced to the detailed medium term plans. They ought not to rewrite them. The short-term plans must focus on differentiation, and issues to do with grouping, lesson transitions etc.

Key point 4: achieving consistency without cramping initiative. Most teachers need and welcome thoughtful medium term planning to guide them. Some will need as much detail as they can get. But for most others the price you pay for prescription is the dulling of imagination. Teachers keeping close to the script can, if you are not too careful, stop taking risks. We need plans that unleash others’ potential, not curb it. We also need new ideas fed into the planning cycle.

Just how good is your KS1 history curriculum?

The 12 most crucial questions to ask yourself about your KS1 history curriculum, and some expert answers if you get stuck! What you should be doing, and what to do if you’re not! Let’s start with the statutory then move on to the questions and then the...
Read more

Medium-term planning for history at Key Stage 1

This part of the site contains a dozen detailed fully-developed enquiry-led, key question-driven medium term plans for all the major KS1 history -led topics. They have all been judged to be outstanding by an experienced OFSTED history inspector. All the recent ones have the added...
Read more

Short-term planning in history at Key Stage 1

This site does not favour the publication of short-term planning, preferring instead to focus on very detailed medium-term planning and allowing teachers the space to create their own short term lesson plans. You'll find all the advice you need about medium-term planning in that section,...
Read more

Creativity in History at Key Stages 1 and 2

What follows below is an attempt to summarise the key points from recent research and to illustrate them with lively examples. I expect this area of the site will grow considerably in the coming months, but this will give you a good start. How to develop...
Read more

Thinking skills in history at Key Stage 1

There is nothing particularly radical about using a thinking skills approach to history at Key Stage 1, but there are certainly two main pitfalls that snare the unwary. The first lies in the area of metacognition, that part of the lesson where pupils think about...
Read more

ICT and history at Key Stage 1

There are lots of opportunities for pupils to use a range of applications at Key Stage 1 that go beyond commercially-produced activities, and cost very little.  I will explore just a few with the promise of further examples in the next upload.  The ones I...
Read more

Linking history and literacy

There is now a considerable amount of advice available to schools on how to link history with literacy, but OFSTED still finds that the opportunities are not being sufficiently exploited. There is a danger that history will just become a practice ground for literacy, so...
Read more

Curriculum models for KS1 history

It seems a logical extension of the advice on long-term planning of the 2014 curriculum to offer you some models of what it might look like. As you know, the devil is in the detail. With the current emphasis firmly on a more cross-curricular approach...
Read more

Curriculum Rationale

Rationale for KS1 history planning within the 2014 curriculum Of all the key stages KS1, came off lightly from Gove's reforms of the history curriculum. Gone are the obvious absurdities of the 2013 version that children should know what is meant by the concept of the...
Read more

Long term planning for history at Key Stage 1

Superficially, Key Stage1 seems the least complex history curriculum to plan because the burden of content to be covered seems manageable.  Scratch beneath the short section that describes the demands of Key Stage 1 history,however, and you'll find lurking some significant issues to be...

Read more

What is History?

12 key ideas young children need to grasp in history, and how they might do it. Most of you reading this will have a good idea of what the nature of history is at Key Stage 1 but may be a little unsure about your role...
Read more
Simple Share Buttons