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At Northfield, pupils make progress in history through building their knowledge of the past, and of how historians study the past and construct accounts. Teaching supports pupil progress by embedding frameworks of content and concepts that enable pupils to access future material. Abstract concepts are best learned through meaningful examples and repeated encounters in different contexts.

Our curriculum design, teaching and assessment prioritises the knowledge that pupils need, in order to understand and learn new material.  The two forms of knowledge that are developed in our History curriculum are:


  • Substantive Knowledge – pupils’ knowledge about the past
  • Disciplinary Knowledge – pupils’ knowledge about how historians investigate the past, and how they construct historical claims, arguments and accounts


By implementing both substantive and disciplinary knowledge, pupils’ capacity to learn and remember more is enhanced. 

Through a high-quality history education, we aim to help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world.

Teachers inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past by providing opportunities for them to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement.

Our history curriculum helps pupils 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.

History Progression Plan