Humanities

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Geography

During their time at Berkeley Primary School we aim to inspire children’s curiosity of their local area and the wider world around them through geographical enquiries both inside and outside the classroom. Children engage in topics that develop their locational knowledge (naming the different countries, continents and oceans of the world) and learn new geographical vocabulary to describe similarities and differences between the places they explore. In addition to this, children are encouraged to put new skills such as map reading and using compass directions into practise. An enthusiasm for geography begins in the Early Years Foundation Stage where children are encouraged to make observations of the environment around them and describe how the environment can be influenced by the humans who live there.  

Wherever possible, cross-curricular links are made to other subjects in the curriculum for example: identifying plants and animals that can be found in different localities in science, exploring the impact of the railway on coastal communities in history and appreciating and understanding music from different cultures and communities. 

To further enhance their learning children are given the opportunity to participate in a variety of fieldwork activities (observing, measuring and recording the features of their local environment) and visit different attractions that build upon their classroom learning.

We made islands. Islands are surrounded by water. We looked up information on the computer about islands and then made them with papier-mâché - Year 2 student

 

We found our secondary schools on a map and looked for a safe route to get to and from them - Year 6 student

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History

During their time at Berkeley Primary School we aim to inspire children’s’ historical curiosity through an exciting range of topics: from the achievements of the earliest civilizations (The Shang Dynasty of Ancient China), to the impact of the Roman Empire on Britain and the effect of World War II on our local area. A love of history begins in the Early Years Foundation Stage where children are encouraged to share events that have happened in their own lives and think about how and why people’s lives were different in the past. 

Our history lessons intend to develop children’s skills and critical thinking by taking an enquiry based approach to learning (inspiring them to learn for themselves by finding the answer to a question). Wherever possible, cross-curricular links are made to other subjects in the curriculum for example: writing diary entries in Literacy, planning a ‘medieval banquet’ in DT and mapping out the location of events in Geography. Each topic has a ‘stunning start’ to create a hook and engage children in the learning ahead of them; and is concluded with a ‘fabulous finish’ which celebrates and brings to life the evidence and information they have uncovered.

To further enhance their experiences children are given the opportunity to visit a number of historical attractions and discover first-hand what life was like during these different periods of time. We also invite theatre groups to come and work with the children, developing their drama skills alongside their historical knowledge.

I had fun making shadows with Florence Nightingale’s lamp. She needed it to see in the hospitals -Year 1 student

 

I liked the Stone Age topic. We went on a fun trip to Butser Ancient Farm. We went in the round houses and made rings out of wire - Year 3 student

 

I enjoyed learning about the Egyptians because we got to crawl through a tomb to find the hidden artefacts. We had to be quick because there was a curse! - Year 4 student

 

When we were doing Greeks we made vases. We looked at images and books and then designed our own - Year 5 student

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