“How can we know who we are and where we are going if we don’t know anything about where we have come from and what we have been through, the courage shown, the costs paid, to be where we are?”
(David McCullough, American author and historian)
With a time span of over 2000 years, these views express the same opinion about why the study of history is important.
The National Curriculum (2014) says that the history curriculum should encourage children, “to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement.” A knowledge of history helps children to, “understand the complexity of people’s lives, the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups, as well as their own identity and the challenges of their time.”
At Sutton-at-Hone CE Primary School, we believe that the learning of history is vital in order for children to have a grounding of who they are, in the society in which we live. History should encourage children to have an enquiring, questioning mind and, alongside our Fundamental British Values, develop a sense of tolerance and understanding of different societies and cultures.
History is taught in a variety of ways, but most effectively, where possible, through hands on experience, such as school trips, workshops and use of authentic resources. Children develop a sense of chronology and learn about societies from the earliest civilisations to the present day. They learn about aspects of local, national and international history, including learning about the lives of significant individuals in the past who have contributed to national and international achievements.
How you can help at home:
Encourage your child to talk to family members about their childhood and their memories of older family members (50 things)
Build a family tree (50 things)
Visit museums or historical buildings of interest – many of these are free and have excellent, engaging resources for children to use while on their visit (50 things)