I’m a new subject leader. How do I know if pupils are making the progress they should in history?

Getting a handle on progression is complicated. There are lots of superficially appealing lists of competencies that link to each age group each produced by commercial companies who have not understanding of the nuances of progression. One example, which should have been more reliable, was published last month on the Historical Association’s website. There is only one problem with them: they are all pretty useless. Take competencies e..g. fromthe Historical Association’s website, such as being able to sequence 4 or 5 objects in Y3 and then 10 objects  by Y6. It doesn’t need a genius to realise that it all depends on which objects and how familiar pupils are with them. I could go through all the other statements and make more or less the same point. In other words, it all depends on the context. Explaining a simple event is easier than a more complicated one.
None of these lists really address this issue.

So, you are asking, if these list of year-by-year competencies don’t work, what does?

Key advice 1

Start by getting your learning objectives pitched at the right level. They should show the depth of knowledge required and the aspect of historical understanding that is being

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