Thomas Jolyffe Primary School

Thomas Jolyffe Primary School


At Thomas Jolyffe we are Historians...


Our vision for ALL our historians at TJ is that they leave us inquisitive, curious, questioning and open-minded.

We want them to leave TJ with a thirst for knowledge and to seek to extend that knowledge and their own understanding. Our children will think critically and evaluate evidence to develop their own perspectives and judgements. This will enable them to learn their place in history, how the past has influenced where they are today and help them to form their own perspective and opinions as global citizens. 

History Curriculum Intent @ TJ

History is arguably one of the most important areas of a person's education; it enables a learner to understand why things are the way they are now and importantly how to ensure past issues don't repeat themselves today.  The study of history concerns events, actions, causes, consequences and people of past societies and develops an understanding of the relationship between the past and our learners’ lives today.


We plan and use the IPC to deliver our History curriculum. Their topics are informed by the National Curriculum and we are also sensitive to children’s interests, as well as the context of the local area. It is also our intent to deliver a History curriculum which is accessible to all and that will maximise the outcomes for every child so that they know more, remember more and understand more.


 As a result of this the children at Thomas Jolyffe Primary School will:

  •  Possess a secure understanding of the chronology of the British Isles and other important periods of History
  • Discover links and connections to the History they learn and the wider community and locality
  • Increase and develop their historical skills, concepts, knowledge and attitudes.
  • Increase their understanding of the present in the context of the past.
  •  Develop and use their skills in enquiry, analysis, evaluation, and argument. Develop their interest in the past, arousing their curiosity and motivation to learn.
  • Develop a sense of identity through learning about the past.


Our History curriculum includes termly topics for all children from EYFS to Year 6. It is our intent that History teaching at TJ equips pupils with knowledge about:

  • the history of Britain and how it has influenced and been influenced by the wider world;
  • significant aspects of the history of the wider world like ancient civilisations and empires;
  • changes in living memory and beyond living memory;
  •  the lives of significant people of the past;
  • the methods of historical enquiry
  • how to ask and answer perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement

History helps our pupils to understand the complexity of people’s lives, the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups. It also helps children gain a sense of their own identity within their locality and within the wider world. 


We want children to enjoy and love learning about History by gaining this knowledge and applying skills, not just through experiences in the classroom, but also through the use of educational visits and visitors. Because of this, we also feel it is important for the subject to be taught discretely as well as incorporated within other areas of the curriculum. 


It is our intent to link History to our SIP and whole school aims, vision and targets wherever possible.

In 2022/23 this means the whole school embedding our Oracy work in their History and our fundraiser for Historical novels for each class library.





History Curriculum Implementation @ TJ

As learners move through their history learning, the increasing complexity is influenced by the historical sources learners use, as well as the depths of understanding required around the causes, actions and outcomes of events and situations.

Learners will gain knowledge of a variety of times, including ancient, modern, recent and living history. They will know about significant events in specific periods and places. Skills of critical analysis, including identifying bias within a broad range of primary and secondary sources, are essential to becoming a historian. Learners will develop an understanding of world history and the interconnectedness of the past.

They will cultivate an understanding of and empathy for peoples of the past through engaging with multiple perspectives accessed through a variety of sources. 


The curriculum is led and overseen by the History leader. As History lead a regular programme of monitoring, evaluation and review and the celebration of good practice contributes to the ongoing commitment to evolve and improve further.


The teaching, learning and sequencing of the History curriculum follows: A blocked thematic curriculum approach (IPC) has been implemented to ensure coverage and progression in all knowledge and skills relating to History and all subjects. History is taught within themed in blocks. Each subject area is named for each lesson in the unit and shared with the children when the objective is shared. This gives children a clear understanding of what History is and when it is taught. Leaders have identified the key knowledge and skills of each topic and consideration has been given to ensure progression across topics throughout each key stage / mixed year group across the school.


In EYFS, teachers follow the ‘Development Matters in the EYFS’ guidance which aims for all children in Reception to have an ‘Understanding of the World; people and communities, by the end of the academic year. In KS1, Pupils will develop an awareness of the past, using common words and phrases relating to the passing of time. As they move through the school they will be taught where the people and events they study fit within a chronological framework and identify similarities and differences between ways of life in different periods. They will be taught to use a wide vocabulary of everyday historical terms. This links to our Oracy priorities. They will ask and answer questions, choosing and using parts of stories and other sources to show that they know and understand key features of events. They will be taught to understand some of the ways in which we find out about the past and identify different ways in which it is represented. The historical knowledge and skills will focus on the world around them and their living memory of History before moving to events that go beyond living history. This will ensure a firm foundation in History. In KS2, they will be taught to note connections, contrasts and trends over time and develop the appropriate use of historical terms. They will be taught to regularly address and sometimes devise historically valid questions about change, cause, similarity and difference, and significance. They will be taught how to construct informed responses that involve thoughtful selection and organisation of relevant historical information. They will be taught to understand how our knowledge of the past is constructed from a range of sources.


In our developing History curriculum, progression of knowledge and skills is set out in order to build and develop the following:

  • Chronological understanding Knowledge and understanding of events, people and changes in the past
  • Connection and historical Links
  • Interpretations of History
  • Historical enquiry


Children are to be taught the sequence of knowledge and skills across a historical theme. Children throughout school will acquire their historical knowledge through a range of teaching strategies which include first hand experiences of artefacts, visits, visitors, photographs, the use of technology and information books. Over time we plan for lessons to develop long term memory by allowing for repetition of learning within the year and year on year. Historical vocabulary is taught within the historical unit and reinforced throughout the year and their school journey (this is a primary focus for the Summer Term at TJ and more details can be found on this page). PSHE and Oracy are threaded through the History curriculum to link History to their lives and explore their heritage and cultural capital. In EYFS staff  collate evidence which demonstrates how and when children talk about past and present events in their own lives and in the lives of family members.

History Curriculum Impact @ TJ

As a result of strong teacher subject knowledge, by the end of Year 6, children will have a chronological understanding of British History.

The impact and measure of our History curriculum is to ensure that children at TJ are equipped with historical knowledge and skills that will enable them to be ready for the curriculum at Key Stage 3 and for life as an adult in the wider world.

We want the children to have thoroughly enjoyed learning about history, therefore encouraging them to undertake new life experiences now and in the future. Outcomes in theme books, will evidence a broad and balanced history curriculum and demonstrate the children’s acquisition of identified key knowledge. Children will work towards reviewing the agreed successes at the end of the topic and will be actively encouraged to identify their own target areas, with support from their teachers.

Children also record what they have learned comparative to their starting points. This is evidenced by initial knowledge harvests and the progress seen in books, display and other work over time.


Our children will think critically, evaluate evidence and develop their own perspectives and judgements. This will enable them to learn their place in History, how the past has influenced where they are today and help them to form their own perspective and opinions as global citizens.

How children become historians @TJ...

As school life begins, children are introduced to history in Reception by looking at past and present events in their own lives so far. They use a range of stimulus for this such as family pictures and tracking their changes from babies to now. As they become more aware of the world around them, they start to identify similarities and differences between families, communities and traditions. In particular, they look at festivals and celebrations that are linked to historical events. 

As the children move into Year One they delve further into the past looking and begin to develop their language of the passing of time. They explore significant people including Queen Elizabeth II and Mae Jameson and find out why they are still significant today. A range of sources are used to start teaching the facts that we can learn about the past in a variety of ways. The skills and concepts of chronology start to be used and the key concept of timelines embedded. The early stages of Year One centre around the changes that occur in living memory.

By Year Two, children have a solid understanding of the past and are introduced to the concept of a timeline in their topic From A to B. The children look at transport in the past and make their own timelines to show when they were invented.  They explore this further by applying their understanding to different types of transport from myths and legends. Whilst completing their Magical Toymaker topic, children identify similarities and differences between an aspect of their life and aspect of the past. They further cement their understanding by learning how houses were made and have been used in the past during their topic Buildings. Year Two continue to expand their knowledge of significant people by exploring Grace Darling. By the end of the key stage our children have a secure understanding of the objectives ready to progress to Key Stage Two. 

At the start of the Juniors, the children are increase their awareness of evidence and sources so that they begin to understand how we find out about the past. This is demonstrated in the topic Scavengers and Settlers as we explore our ancestors and use evidence to find out about what they may have looked like and how they were able to survive. The topic allows an immersive element to the learning as children are given the opportunity to find their own evidence and make predictions. Continuing from Key Stage One, the children develop an understanding of timelines by looking at how early human life developed through to the Bronze and Iron Ages. 


Moving into Year Four, children will complete the topic All Aboard whereby they will develop their understanding of a significant turning point in British history with the history of the railways. They will learn about early inventors and their working conditions to the growth of the railway system and the impact it made on British communities and the economy. Another topic Year Four will learn about is Temples, Tombs and Treasures where they will compare life in Ancient Sumner with life in Ancient Egypt. They will continue to find and use evidence to support their learning with more independence and explanations for their reasoning. The impact of beliefs on society is explored including the analysis of how Egyptian gods impacted people's lives.


Arriving in Year Five, children continue to explore a range of different historical topics during The Great the Bold and the Brave and AD 900. They continue to use all of the skills learned so far during their school experience, however they start to develop their reasoning skills further as they look at events that have changed history such as the Roman Empire decline and look for reasons why this might have happened including the impact of this at the time. The children take more independence with their learning and conduct independent research whilst deciding their own opinions and reasons. They continue to use sources to build on their learning and use these skills across a wide range of history topics. 


As we prepare our children for secondary school, the children will be working with good awareness of different history topics and their impact in time. They demonstrate their secure chronological knowledge and understanding in their Time Tunnel unit where they explore the overview of world history. 

They are able to conduct their own research and present findings with confidence as they learn about an aspect of history of their own choosing. This supports their understanding of the past whilst making clear links with the present developing their ability to explain why change happens and how it has made an impact. 


History in the EYFS at Thomas Jolyffe...

Photos us working practically, heading out on trips and engaging in our curriculum can be found on Twitter @TJPrimary

Pupil Voice


In Spring 2024, I spoke to some pupils about History at TJ.

What you said...

'I like learning about different times and places'

'History is fun, I like finding out about the past'

'I'd like more History trips to help our learning'

'I liked learning about the toys my Grandma played with'

'The trip to Cadbury World was amazing!

We had fun and learnt more about the Mayan's'

'I want to see more things from the past.'

What happens now...

I am so pleased that you are enjoying History, as a school we are working hard to help make your History learning even better. The new History ambassadors have really helped raise the profile and are getting stuck into their roles as History Champions!

In the Summer term we are:

  • finalising our book order and spending over £500 on historical fiction across the school. These will be in your book corners in Summer 1. 
  • two year groups are trialling a new History Curriculum, if it is successful and we feel it will make your History learning even better we may roll it out to the whole school in September 2024.
  • meeting with other local schools to share skills and expertise in History and to magpie some new ideas!


I'm glad you enjoy trips and visitors, we always hope to offer more opportunities so I will keep a look out and let your teachers know of any that come up.


To help our learning about local History I have met up with other schools in Stratford to share ideas on projects we can take part in. As part of these discussions, the History Lead at Stratford upon Avon School has offered to share and lend some of their historical artefacts. We are hoping to tie this kind offer into the History Curriculum from September, this will hopefully give more hands on opportunities with historical artefacts! 


Thank you for your feedback,

Mrs Evans 

History Subject Lead





This week in History...

TJ Historical Fiction

Children's Choice


Don't forget to speak to you class History Ambassador to let them know which Historical Fiction books you'd like for your book corner. You can also share with them books you have enjoyed and would recommend to other year groups.


For more details on this project and if you want to submit your own request, scroll down this page.


We are meeting early in Summer 1 (April 2024) to finalise our order!

Spring 2 2024

Remembrance Day 2023


In class and assemblies we have been learning about Remembrance Day and why we wear poppies.


On Friday 10th November at 11am we will hold a 2 minute silence so all the school can pause and reflect.


If you would like to join Stratford in marking Remembrance Day. The civic procession takes place on Sunday 12th November. It starts from the Town Hall in Sheep Street, CV37 6EF at 10:35 and travels along Chapel Street, Church Street and into Old Town to the Remembrance Garden, CV37 6BN. The Royal British Legion and Contingents process from Bull Street and join the civic procession from the junction of Church Street/Chestnut Walk. There will be a short service of remembrance and a 2 minute silence at 11:00am. 

Black History Month- October 2023 


October is Black History Month and this year the theme is 'saluting our sisters.' Across TJ all children will be exploring and learning about inspirational black women through art, music and stories. Each class will produce a piece of artwork and feedback on what they have learnt. 


Watch this space for more photos and updates...

Keep an eye out for displays of the children's work in the infant and junior halls. 


This year we are raising money to establish historical fiction in all are class book corners.

We will do this through fundraising, including our history themed Coronation Celebration.

Teaching staff are in the process of requesting texts they'd like to read to their classes, we will be asking the children too.

This is why we think this is important...

Help please!

What Historical Fiction would you like to see in the TJ book corners? 

(February 2024)

If you have a historical fiction book you'd like to suggest or see available for TJ children please complete the form and we will add it to our list!

Where possible please include; title, author and the age range it is suitable for.

In the Summer Term we are celebrating the King's Coronation and our living history...

Coronation Celebration

Coronation competition update...

History is all around us...

Mrs R Evans 

History Lead

‘Children are captivated by their learning’, ‘The well-being of pupils is at the heart of the school’, ‘School is a calm place - pupils are polite, courteous and well-mannered.'