Bespoke CPD (Part 2)!

Consultancy

It was, once again, time to reconvene with the History Subject Leader at Lawrence View Primary and Nursery School in Eastwood, Nottingham (https://www.lawrenceviewprimary.co.uk/) to continue our discussions around their whole school curriculum map for the subject.

Following our previous session, the History Subject Leader had revisited my suggested websites, resources and ideas. I was really impressed with the progress that she had made to develop their whole school history curriculum offering. During the week, I had attended a fantastic training day, led by David Weatherly and with significant input from Sheena Wright on ‘Enhancing cultural diversity in geography and history from EYFS to Year 6‘ and I shared the key takeaways with the History Subject Leader. I had also delivered our final in situ and virtual Primary Geography Subject Leader Network meetings for this academic year, where Amy Coole, Assistant Headteacher at Abbeymead Primary School in Gloucester was also invited to speak (https://www.abbeymead.gloucs.sch.uk/). I projected some of the documentation that Amy had circulated and directed the History Subject Leader towards a number of useful websites and resources to support ‘reading across the curriculum‘ and local history studies. Before we contemplated the next steps, I paused to see if she had any further questions; these were minimal and quickly resolved. Thereafter, it was decided to focus upon enquiry, including overriding and ancillary questions, structure and delivery, resourcing and assessment.

Firstly, we viewed an extract from a movie clip produced by Ofsted called ‘Geography: Subject curriculum insights for primary and secondary teachers and leaders‘ (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A3T8p-YYRvw). Whilst this focused largely on geography, many of the comments relating to assessment were equally valid for history. There should be several granular components to test core knowledge and then a big picture/composite assessment with accompanying criteria to demonstrate application of acquired knowledge and skills, plus understanding.

Next, I referred to a historical enquiry written by David Weatherly, a huge advocate of enquiry-led, outcomes-driven learning and author of Collins’ Primary Connected History series (http://davidweatherlyeducation.co.uk/ and https://collins.co.uk/pages/connected-history-free-resources). We looked at a sample medium-term plan overview, learning organiser and the content and structure of a unit. I also shared some tips that I had picked up from David about ‘Creating high quality enquiries from EYFS to Year 6‘.

Finally, we considered ‘history for everyone‘; making sure that the subject is inclusive and accessible for all. We touched upon ‘decolonising the curriculum‘ and SEND/scaffolding both within and beyond the classroom. I projected some slides from our recent Primary Geography Subject Leader Network meeting that had relevance to history too. The History Subject Leader certainly had lots to now think about and discuss with the Geography Subject Leader and other members of staff.

Feedback from the History Subject Leader indicated that our two morning sessions had been extremely useful.

I look forward to hearing about and seeing how things evolve over the remainder of this academic year and the next. Remember that you cannot turn things around overnight; a curriculum should be dynamic, taking into account your current cohort and upcoming events, as well as involve a degree of experimentation and reflection. Good luck! I am here if you require any further support too!

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