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Laddingford St Mary's

C of E Primary School

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Our vision is History taught as a narrative subject that helps children develop strong chronologies of cause and effect, explore big ideas across diverse topics and develop their critical and analytical skills as historians, interpreting textual and archaeological sources. History is not just ‘learning about the past’ but also understanding how we learn about and interpret the past. History should be taught with a strong focus on the scientific method of discovering and evaluating evidence to support theories.


We teach British History as a continuous story:

  • Prehistoric Britain: We begin with an overview of prehistoric Britain, learning how homo sapiens arose as the dominant form of hominid over others. We see how the development of stone then bronze and iron tools gradually transformed the ability of humans to first survive then shape and control the natural world in the British Isles. We’ll learn how these technological advances led humans from nomadic bands of hunter gatherers to settled farmers in complex tribal structures over hundreds of thousands of years.
  • The Romans in Britain: Next, we learn how the Roman arrival changed Britain and the way in which this powerful empire shaped and changed the course of British history. We’ll also look at the ways in which the Roman Empire began to crumble and the impact this had on Britain.
  • The Anglo-Saxons: We learn how the Roman withdrawal from Britain made room for the arrival of Angles, Saxons and Jutes from Northern Europe and then societies that they formed with shifting centres of power and kingdoms.
  • The Vikings vs. The Anglo-Saxons: Finally, we learn how the Vikings and Anglo-Saxons tussled for control of the British Isles, setting the scene for the Norman invasion of 1066.
  • World War 2 – Laddingford at War: In our post-1066, local history unit, we use our unique, primary sources in school to help children build a picture of how World War II impacted their school and community with the arrival of evacuees from London, the construction of an air-raid shelter and a Luftwaffe bomb landing close enough to the school to blow out the windows.


Our other units of History focus on providing greater background or contrast to our units on Britain:

  • Early Civilisations Overview and Ancient Egypt Depth Study: We learn about the pattern of human development around the world and the agricultural revolution before zooming in on how the complex civilisation of Ancient Egypt arose and flourished around the River Nile in North Africa, tracing similarities and differences between their cultural development and that of prehistoric Britain.
  • The Classic Maya: We look at the Classical Maya civilisation of the Yucatan peninsula and see how a culture with surprising similarities and startling differences evolved in isolation from Eurasian history and how archaeology helped us to unravel the mysteries of this lost civilisation.
  • The Ancient Greeks: We learn about how the cultural achievements of the Ancient Greeks influenced those around them, especially the Romans, and continue to echo through history to the present day.

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