History at Cotsford
This year in History we are following the suggested units of work from Durham County alongside the Cornerstones projects. After reviewing our curriculum we are now focusing on chronology and improving the children’s understanding of significant aspects of History both within the UK and the wider world. This is started in EYFS where the children focus on themselves and changes within their families and environment. It then progresses into Key Stage One where the children start to look at the history of their local area. By Key Stage Two the children will be focusing on important civilizations around the world.
This half term, Reception have been exploring adult and baby animals. They looked at similarities and differences, some of them they were a little surprised at, especially the crocodile!
The children in Year 1 have loved looking at our local history in and around Horden. The focus was life in the 1950s and 1960s, around the coal mining areas in Durham. The children enjoyed learning about Norman Cornish and his achievements throughout his life as a coal miner and artist. You can learn more about Norman Cornish here Norman Cornish.
Year 2 and 3 have really enjoyed learning about seaside holidays in the past. They have loved used primary sources to explore how holidays have changed over the years and they have learnt some fascinating facts about holidays in the 1950s and during the Victorian period. Enjoy reading their facts below.
Wow! Year 3 have been fascinated with the Ancient Greeks, from the Gods to the myths! The children understood where Ancient Greek civilisation was throughout time and loved exploring the artefacts. Some of them were difficult to guess! The children loved reading a range of books but quickly realised that the information differed. This was their ‘Eureka’ moment that everything you read is not always accurate. The Trojan Horse was a prime example as they read it was built in 3 days. Several children in lockdown chose to research Greek life, children and theatres using Purple Mash resources. The children very quickly noticed that life for poor Greeks was totally different than that of the rich. The children were intrigued to hear that many Greeks were slaves, including those in the army. You can see some of their impressive work below.
Year 4’s topic this half term was ‘Why did the Romans leave Britain?’. They really enjoyed finding out what happened at the end of Roman rule when the Anglo-Saxons invaded. They revisited the timeline of what happened when the Romans were in charge and what made them leave Britain. Then, the children explored primary sources from the Anglo-Saxon period – as you can see, their favourite part was trying on the traditional costumes!
Year 4 then moved on to investigate the burial mound at Sutton Hoo. There were lots of interesting artefacts found buried with King Redwald. The children explored how rich people were often buried with their belongings and discussed what they could find out about the King from the objects he was buried with.
They also looked at Anglo Saxon life in Britain. It was really interesting finding out about the different items of jewellery the Anglo-Saxons made themselves!
Year 5 became history detectives and transported back in time to the Victorian Era. They were really intrigued by the way children were treated and the fact that children worked in the mines. They found it very difficult to understand why children had very few rights and had to work instead of going to school. I hope you enjoy reading some of their amazing work.
They started to learn about a famous Pitman Painter called Tommy Armstrong and the songs that he wrote that documented their lives in the mines.
Year 6 have found learning about the lives of children through the ages very exciting. They researched how children lived in different eras, learned about their favourite pastimes and even found out that some children had to go to work! The children identified different periods of history and made inferences from historical sources.
Spring 2 – Remote Learning and return to school
Although History has not be a focus for this half term Reception have still been learning about Understanding the World. While learning at home, the children had fun thinking about their favourite meals. They looked at different foods and explored how their mealtimes are different to other peoples, as you can see in the photo.
Spring 1 – Remote Learning
This half term, Reception have explored similarities and differences to our parents. They took selfies of themselves and a parents so that they could identify that sometimes we have different hair and eye colour to our parents.
We have had some super History Detectives in Year 1! They have looked at homes in the past and present. First, they drew and labelled a picture of their own home. The children then had to follow clues using pictures from the past, to work out which room was being described. You can have a go too by following the link to Purple Mash.
Year 2 and 3 have been discovering famous firsts. These have included; the film film, the first flight, the first telephone call and the first moon landing. The children enjoyed completing their own research, making timelines and examining some primary sources of these significant events and people. You can see some great ordering work and images of famous firsts in the photos below.
Year 3 travelled all the way back to Ancient Egypt. They began by learning how long ago this period was and the children quickly realised how more advanced the Egyptians were than us at the time. Some children loved finding out about the mummification process, but some found it disgusting! They explored a range of artefacts found from Tutankhamun’s tomb and they read about Howard Carter and his discovery of the famous Boy King. You can see some of their fine work below.
Roman Britain has been the main focus for Year 4 so far this year. They completed a long timeline to plot when exactly the Romans ruled in Britain and then began to explore what life was like in Roman towns and cities around the UK. The children enjoyed carrying out research as part of their home learning and produced lots of exciting information texts, posters and artwork to compliment the topic. Follow the link if you would like to find out more about Roman Britain or you could even visit Hadrian’s Wall.
I have loved seeing the death masks as part of Year 5’s study of the Mayan civilisation. They investigated other areas of their daily life, including food, clothing, what their homes looked like and the number system that they used.
Year 6 have been researching British Monarchs. They decided who they thought had been the most successful monarch based on the evidence they collected. The children studied three monarchs from the past, Alfred the Great, Henry VIII, Queen Victoria and the current monarch Queen Elizabeth II and decided that it was Queen Victoria. Who do you think has been the most successful monarch?
In Early Years this half term the children have thought about what we would do if they were a king or a queen and how they have an important role. They have explored changes in the season of Autumn to Winter and they have all brought in their winter coats ready for the cold weather.
As a school we all took part in Remembrance Day. The children in Year 5 discussed Remembrance Day and why we remember the fallen on the same day every year. The children took part in a two minutes silence and then listened to The Last Post while they created their poppy tribute on the poem, In Flanders field.
In Early Years this term we have explored our family, drawing and talking about people who are important to us and our families and role playing in our home corner. We have looked at people who help us within the community, school and at home.
Our topic in Year 1 this half term was School Days. We reflected on our own history, first of all, looking at significant events in our own lives so far. We then looked at what life was like before we were born. We talked about how different schools were 50 years ago! This included a visitor, who talked to us about her school experiences over 50 years ago! We also looked at what Christmas was like in the past, and compared the similarities and differences to now.
This half term Year 2 and 3 have looked at the history of the northeast of England. They discovered some special places including; The Angel of the North, Hadrian’s Wall, The Tyne Bridge, Killihope Mine and Durham Cathedral. The children plotted the different places on a map, ordered them on a timeline and learnt some facts about the importance of each place. We then moved on to learning about the history of our local area including significant places in Horden. Mrs Rigby spoke to us about the origins of Horden and some of the special places that the children might know. The children examined different maps showing how and why Horden has changed over the years.
They enjoyed exploring and handling artefacts from the past.
Year 3 have been exploring the Stone Age and Iron Age. We began by trying to place British monumental sites in chronological order. We learnt about different eras in British history and completed a time line. The children looked at different sources throughout history including artefacts from the Stone age and Iron age. They made assumptions and asked questions about our history. We enjoyed watching video clips of different archaeological sites and watching archaeologists at work. From this we became archaeologists and had to extract the treasure from the biscuit – the chocolate chips were the treasure. We used knifes and brushes to carefully break the biscuit. However we also discovered it was important to look after the treasure – as the majority of the children dropped or lost the chocolate chips. The children were finding it difficult to understand how long ago the Stone Age was so we made a timeline. Each paper towel represented 100 years (the oldest person they knew). We realised by doing this that the Stone Age was a long time ago. We looked closely at the Iron Age and explored how it differed from the Stone Age.
In Year 4 we have been learning all about the Romans and why they came to invade Britain. We have had the opportunity to explore primary sources and evaluate their use. We have also learnt about important people during the Roman period, such as Julius Caesar. The children have enjoyed drama activities such as hot seating and class discussions about who would have been affected most by the Roman invasion.
This half term in Year 5 the children have investigated the question – Were the Vikings vicious? We have looked at different primary sources, reference books and artefacts to come to a decision about whether Terry Deary was right to call them vicious. The children investigated the home life of Vikings and what education the children experienced in their day.
Year 6 have been exploring the topic, ‘Fallen Fields’. The children have developed their chronological knowledge of the past through looking at timelines and ordering events. We have identified historical events before and after World War 1 and have researched the causes and events that contributed to its start. Year 6 have also been finding out about the role of animals during WW1 and have created a leaflet to explain how and why they were used.
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