Progression of Historical Enquiry
Developing the skills of historical enquiry, runs as a common thread throughout our history curriculum, regardless of the topic covered. We understand that children need to be supported to appreciate how enquiry is a common thread throughout their study of history. By using expert resources such as Key Stage History for inspiration, teachers plan engaging lessons which use the enquiry-based approach.
Children are encouraged to discover new knowledge and piece together understanding for themselves by using different sources of evidence. Several lessons can be spent solving an enquiry and most lessons feature aspects of enquiry-based learning in some way. this enquiry process is made explicit so that children can use it with increasing independence as they mature and progress through the school.
Therefore, we created our own “process for historical enquiries” which is displayed in each classroom and referred to during planning and lessons. Each lesson begins with a “Learning Question” which children should then be able to answer by the end. Enquiries also provided children with the valuable experience of making links across their learning and drawing upon their knowledge from several lesson. For example, “Who could the mystery box, found in Colchester, belong to?” and “What advice would we give to the planners of the new monument to Mary Seacole on the site of St Thomas’ Hospital?” We want children to develop a critical understanding that much of history is what have historians chosen to interpret from the surviving evidence of the past. Therefore, we encourage children to evaluate and challenge these ideas.