Jan Rymer looks at a resource that fleshes out the QCA schemes of work for history at key stage 2
LCP History Resource File
Key Stage 2 Years 3amp;4; By Nicola Brooks and Kari Gordon; pound;79.95 plus VAT
Additional flipbooks pound;49.95 each
The LCP History Resource File for key stage 2, Years 3 and 4, is a blessing for hard-pressed teachers needing to flesh out the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority's schemes of work. It is particularly useful for schools adopting the schemes "wholesale", as the file covers units 6a, b, c; 7; 8; 9; 10 and 18. It offers very good support for newly qualified or less confident history teachers.
It comprises a ringbinder of photocopiable lesson plans, resource and activity sheets for each unit, and a large-format flipbook of pictures and photographs. There are similar files for KS1 and for Years 5 and 6.
The medium and short-term plans provided should satisfy even those heads who demand every last detail in teachers' plans. Clear links are made not only to the QCA schemes but to national curriculum programmes of study. Key questions, learning objectives and outcomes, cross-curricular links and assessment activities are given for every lesson on both mid-term and individual lesson plans. Mid-term plans are in a familiar format and are easy to follow. The meticulous detail geared towards new teachers can seem patronising; for example, instructions for a site visit include: "Remind children to bring suitable footwear and clothing." But overall the plans are useful and teacher-friendly.
The lesson content closely follows suggested QCA activities, and most are tried and tested favourites. The great advantage of this is that it provides a framework with ready-made worksheets and lesson plans for busy teachers. It supports lessons that many teachers are already delivering rather than replacing them. Activities are well suited to this age group, and relate to the children's own levels of experience. Some lack challenge but experienced teachers will find their own alternatives and slot them in.
Lesson plans also include ideas for differentiation, though these are limited.
There are suggestions and links to other resources and teachers' own favourite activities can be incorporated.
The flipbook is attractive, useful, and can be bought on its own. It has 20 large-format pictures, two or three relating to each of the QCA units.
These include a superb photograph of artefacts from the Sutton Hoo treasure, well-known Egyptian historical sites and an illustration of a week's food rations during the Second World War. There is also a handy timeline from 3000BC to AD2000. These images could prompt group discussion.
Overall, these resources provide well-thought-out and valuable support.
Jan Rymer is Year 3 class teacher at Callicroft Junior School, South Gloucestershire