Harborough primary school recognised for its 'excellent' teaching of local history

In their most recent project, children explored listed buildings around Market Harborough

Tuesday, 21st September 2021, 1:17 pm
Updated Tuesday, 21st September 2021, 1:18 pm
Back row: Teacher Noel Burton, Ismail Dale of Historic England and headteacher Nikki Matthew. Front: Year 6 pupils Chloe, Kitty, Dylan and Adam with the Heritage School's Award. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

A primary school in Market Harborough has been recognised for its 'excellent' teaching of local history.

In the last two years, Farndon Fields Primary School has developed an annual Heritage Week in which the children learn about significant local events.

And following the children's recent project on listed buildings around Market Harborough, the school has been awarded the prestigious Historic England Heritage Award.

History lead Noel Burton said: “As part of our commitment to constantly improving our curriculum offer at Farndon Fields, we designed Heritage Week to inspire a love of history by linking learning to the local area in which our pupils live.

"It also helps ensure they have a secure knowledge of key historical events that will enhance their learning and understanding of the wider world as they move through school.”

In addition to each year group’s individual area of study, there is a whole school theme for the week every year.

Despite the challenges presented by a global pandemic, the school’s Heritage Week went ahead again in February with the theme about discovering Market Harborough’s listed buildings and providing photos for a whole school display.

As this took place during a period of national lockdown, families were also encouraged to participate during their daily walks and some even contributed their photos to Historic England’s website.

And the annual event at the school has not gone unnoticed by Historic England. Following a submission by Mr Burton, the school was praised by the Government organisation and awarded the Historic England Heritage Award.

In making the award, Ismail Dale, the Local Heritage Education Manager from Historic England, described the school’s History teaching as “excellent” and said that the school’s Heritage Week programme was a great source that he could use to demonstrate best practise for other schools.

The learning the children do during Heritage Week has also been recognised by the Naseby Battlefield Trust who asked the school to participate in an arts project - called Naseby 1645 - commissioned to commemorate the battle.

Headteacher Nikki Matthew said: "I am extremely proud of the way in which our community has engaged in Heritage Week. It is so important for our children to understand the legacy of historical events and how this might support their decision making now and in the future."