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A member of Excalibur Academies Trust

Compass Point Primary School


"A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots".

                                                                                                    Marcus Garvey


Our Curriculum Intent

At Compass Point, we believe that learning about history is an essential part of the curriculum; we believe that to know our past is to enable us to make better choices for the future. We want our children to develop a real sense of themselves in time as well as to understand the rich history of Bristol, Great Britain and the world.  Our children are given the opportunity to study a broad range of historical topics in depth as well as incidentally throughout the curriculum.

We teach our children to think like historians, to interrogate sources and evidence, to ask questions and to interpret what they have found out. We believe it is important that our children are given as many first hand experiences as possible to do this. We provide opportunities for our children to speak to local experts, to visit museums, to handle artefacts and to visit sites of historical interest. 

Throughout their school career children will investigate and learn to sequence events in order to develop a sense of chronology and an understanding of the past; its stories, events and people.  We strive to seek historical role models that represent different ethnicities, gender and disability. 



 Our history curriculum is carefully planned  to enable our pupils to have repeated encounters with a range of important historical concepts in different contexts. When learning about a new topic we consider the key concepts of  cause, consequences, change and continuity over time, similarities and differences, events and people of historical significance.

Our history curriculum is initially planned using the National Curriculum statutory framework. Key events, people, events or ages are identified and mapped across the school. Within each topic there is a ‘Big Question’ that is approached through smaller learning challenges. This introduces the children to carefully chosen historical information. Within each topic we learn about what life was like for people in that time, we look at trade, rule, beliefs, migration, technological advances. Our concept-led, enquiry based curriculum helps to focus learning, whilst the cyclical approach enables children to develop and deepen their understanding and make links.

Pupils are supported to learn new content using carefully chosen meaningful examples. Teachers and curriculum leaders recognise the crucial role of contextual and background information in learning new material, they carefully consider the prior learning needed in order for current learning to be successful. Through the use of knowledge organisers our teaching emphasises content and concepts for direct and explicit teaching, as well as opportunities for incidental learning. We believe it is fundamental for children to encounter rich stories and contextual details about the past, which make abstract ideas more meaningful.

History progression document

Our history curriculum


Early Years Curriculum

History is an essential part of learning in the Foundation Stage as it is incorporated in everyday learning. The historical aspects of the children’s work relate to the objectives set out in the early learning goals (ELGs).

KS1 Curriculum

In KS1, children begin by learning about small snapshots of history by considering changes within living memory. This enables children to understand how history is always being made. They will look first at local history in order for children to understand how their homes and Bristol have been affected by people and events around them, giving them a regional identity. They will start to look at history on a larger scale by looking at significant people and events from the past. 

KS2 Curriculum

In KS2, children build upon their prior knowledge and study specific periods of time in local, national and world history. Children continue to develop their skills of historical enquiry by learning to differentiate between primary and secondary sources as well as making independent evaluations of historical events. They will be able to build up an understanding of chronology.


Children at Compass Point Primary School will be able to know more and remember more about history. They will be able to understand historical concepts and vocabulary and have an understanding of the events and people that have shaped the world that we live in today. They will have developed skills such as problem solving, asking and answering questions, testing and evaluating hypotheses as well as developing a sense of curiosity. Our children will be able to see patterns throughout history and make links between different events, peoples and times.


Some quotes from our children

"I loved learning about how people in the stone age made weapons out of stone" - AM Y4


"I loved hearing about Stonehenge because so many people had to drag the stones from Wales" - AH Y4


"I enjoyed learning about the Industrial Revolution because it was a big change in society and interesting to hear about life before and after". ED Y5


"There is no life that does not contribute to history".

                                                                                                       Dorothy West