History Infant

History is taught in order to stimulate the pupils’ interest and understanding about significant events and the lives of significant people in the past and how these important factors have influenced our lives today.

We aim to foster in pupils an interest in the past and to develop an understanding that enables them to enjoy all that history has to offer through knowing about significant events in British and world history appreciating how things have changed over time.

Children are taught to begin to develop a sense of chronology and to understand society and their place within it, so that they develop a sense of their cultural heritage.

Children will have the opportunity to develop their skills of enquiry, investigation, analysis, evaluation and presentation through a variety of hands-on practical activities.  Children experience real history through visitors to school, drama, visits to historical sites such as Norwich Cathedral and Holkham Hall.  Such activities provide a stimulus for exciting and relatable cross curricular opportunities, including speaking and listening and writing. We also use artefacts, visual resources and Information Technology to inspire children to find out about the past.

History is planned and delivered in Key Stage 1 in line with the National Curriculum and is integrated within topic teaching. Skills are taught progressively from Reception to year 6, with opportunities for children to build on and embed their learning.

In the Early Years Foundation Stage children learn about history through child centred activities as part of their Understanding the World area of development.


In the EYFS the children are learning through play! They have a specific topic focus for each half, to give the children opportunities to explore a broad range of new experiences and to offer challenge through in school opportunities and visitors and visits. Staff respond swiftly to the children’s own child initiated learning experiences, interacting in a way which moves learning forwards for all learners. Reception children are encouraged to talk about past and present events in their own lives and in the lives of family members.  The children will learn through experiences that introduce the concept of time and change.

Your child’s teacher may ask ‘What happened next?’ after reading a story or looking at other sequences of events, such as getting dressed, planting a seed or making a sandwich. Children may be asked to think about themselves and how they have changed over time.

How you can help your child:

  • Encourage your child’s awareness of features in the area you live. Point out how some buildings look older than others.
  • Take your child to museums, galleries and history-themed events.
  • Discuss events that occur regularly within your child’s experience, for example seasonal patterns, daily routines and celebrations.
  • Help your child to develop a sense of change over time and help them to differentiate between past and present by growing plants or looking at photographs of their life. Talk about past and present events in their own lives and in those of other members of the family or friends.
  • Encourage investigative behaviour and raise questions such as, ‘What do you think?’, ‘Tell me more about?’, ‘What will happen if..?’, ‘What else could we try?’, ‘What could it be used for?’ and ‘How might it work?’
  • Use language relating to time in conversations, for example, ‘yesterday’, ‘old’, ‘past’, ‘now’ and ‘then’.
  • Read stories that introduce a sense of time and people from the past.

Year 1

In Year 1 we learn about a variety of interesting and inspiring topics.  The topics which have a strong Historical focus are ‘Our Planet and Beyond’ and ‘Step Back in Time.’

During the ‘Our Planet and Beyond’ topic we look at significant events and individuals who have contributed to national and international achievements, eg: the first man in space (Yuri Gagarin) and the first man on the moon (Neil Armstrong).

During the topic ‘Step Back in Time’ we will learn facts Victorian times, and we’ll visit Holkham Hall and learn about a typical Victorian day. On our visit we look back at the history of the building and families that lived there.

Year 2

In Year 2 we learn about a variety of exciting, thought provoking topics.  The topics which have a strong Historical focus are ‘Medieval Norwich’ and ‘Land and Sea’.

Through the topic ‘Medieval Norwich’, we use a variety of sources to gather information including books, posters and the internet.

Our work focuses on how people lived and we identify differences between the past and present. We visit Norwich Cathedral as part of our history studies.

Our topic of ‘Air, Land and Sea’ includes work across lots of curriculum areas. In History we learn about Lord Admiral Nelson as he is a local figure in history.  We also learn about the life of Monet and look at his famous artwork.

We’re looking forward to showing you pictures of our exciting Historical learning throughout the year so please check back regularly.

  • Toftwood Federation Online Historical Cook Booklet

  • Infant History Spring 2020

    Year one

    Year one studied the topic of ‘Our Planet and Beyond.’ The children learnt about the history of space travel including learning about the race to space and the astronauts Neil Armstrong, Yuri Gagarin. They have been introduced to time lines for the events of space travel.

    Year two

    During the topic of ‘Air, Land and Sea’ the children have learnt about Lord Admiral Nelson. They found out about important dates in his life and could use prior knowledge of how a timeline works to create their own timeline for Lord Admiral Nelson. Some of the children were able to expand on the information and wrote additional facts for each date.

  • Autumn Term 2019 – Remembrance Day

    This year within the Federation we marked Remembrance Day with the selling of poppies, and a whole school assembly at both the Infants and Juniors with a 1 minute silence at 11am. The Junior children discussed the first world war and thought about places in the world where people are still suffering from war today. The children at the Infant school gathered together to discuss the importance of the day. They learnt a little bit about the history of selling poppies, what they represent and why we come together every year to mark this event. The Reception children showed the school the poppies they had created in class. During the assembly the children were shown a short animation designed to explain Remembrance Day to young children. https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b04p4zsl/poppies

    The Federation were also very lucky to receive a visit from the British Legion in the lead up to Remembrance Day.

  • History Autumn Term 2019

    Early Years

    The Reception children have been encouraged to talk about any significant past events in their or other people’s lives.  Their interactions with other children and adults have been observed and noted on Tapestry (the online and interactive Learning Story used in Early Years).  The children were involved with Remembrance Day proceedings, including making their own poppies.

    Year 1

    During the topic ‘Winter Wonderland’ the children learnt about a significant person from the past, Robert Falcon Scott.  They talked about why Robert Falcon Scott is significant, why he went to the Antarctic and thought of reasons for and against Robert Falcon Scott going to the Antarctic.

    Year 2

    Night time

    As part of our topic Night time the children have learnt about a siginificant person from the past, Guy Fawkes.  The children wrote about who Guy Fawkes was and why he is an important historical person.

    They picked some items that Guy Fawkes might have used in 1605 and described how he would have used them. They then explained the difference between objects that Guy Fawkes could have used, compared with what he might have used today.

    Medieval Norwich

    Year 2 children have learnt about life in medieval times. Lessons included looking at artefacts relating to Norwich’s past, comparing old and new landmarks in Norwich, and finding out about castles and how they were defended.

    Children participated in a medieval day. They had the opportunity to practise lots of different skills which were used in a castle, including archery and jousting. They also got to make and taste a special stew.

    In the afternoon our school hall was turned into a banquet hall.  The children dressed up as a member of the castle community. A lord and lady from each class sat on the top table and we ate bread, cheese and grapes together. Each class performed a medieval class dance for the other guests.

  • History Summer Term 2019

    Early Years

    The children have been encouraged to talk about any significant past events in their or other people’s lives.  Their interactions with other children and adults have been observed and noted on Tapestry (the online and interactive Learning Story used in Early Years).  They have explored artefacts during a visit to Gressenhall Rural Life Museum.

    Year 1

    During the topic of ‘Step back in time’ the children have talked about the similarities and differences today compared to Victorian times. This topic included a visit to Holkham Hall and participating in a Victorian wash day.

    Year one have also looked at famous inventors in history, including Thomas Edison who invented the light bulb and Alexander Graham Bell who invented the telephone.

    Victorian Wash Day

    The children experienced what it would have been like to wash their clothes in Victorian times.  They took turns to have a go at each stage and hung the clothes on the line to dry.  This was an excellent way to show the children how things have changed over the years and how lucky we are nowadays to have machines to help us.

    Year 2

    During the topic of ‘Art around the world’ has looked at the children have learnt about the life of a variety of artists such as Kandinsky and Andy Warhol and the impact they had on art history.  In the lessons they also created art in the style of these artists.

    The children have also had the opportunity to learn about the history of art in other countries such as Australia and Egypt. They have seen and recreated aboriginal art and Egyptian hieroglyphics as well as performing their own version of the Haka after learning about the Maori people from New Zealand.