History

History is an academic subject rich in powerful knowledge. It provides coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. History helps learners to understand the complexity of people’s lives, the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups, as well as their own identity and the challenges of their time.   

“Those who cannot remember the past, are condemned to repeat it.” George Santayana.

Staff:

  • Mrs L.Gilmore-Head of department
  • Ms S.Ingram-History teacher.
  • Miss L. Comer -History teacher.
  • Mr D. Kelly – History Teacher, Achievement Leader Y10.

Intent

  • Providing learners with a broad range of historical knowledge and understanding, including a sense of development over time, and an appreciation of the culture and attitudes of societies other than our own;
  • Allowing learners to gain historical perspective by placing their growing knowledge into different contexts;
  • Giving learners power over their own knowledge allowing them to evaluate critically the significance and utility of a large body of material, including evidence from contemporary sources and interpretations of historians;
  • Enabling learners to engage directly with questions and present independent opinions about them in arguments that are well-written, clearly expressed, coherently organised and effectively supported by relevant evidence;
  • Allowing learners to gain the confidence to undertake self-directed learning with use of the learning resource centre, making the most effective use of time and resources, and increasingly defining one’s own questions and goals.

Implementation

Curriculum features

History aims to equip our learners with both powerful knowledge and the skills required to become well-rounded individuals. Our curriculum is structured to nurture a love of History through the development of five key concepts; historical skills and a depth of knowledge, using evidence, cause and consequence, change and continuity and interpretations. These concepts are used as tools for learners to make sense of, and understand, the volume of knowledge required for the development of subject mastery. Learners study a wide range of historical periods from Roman Britain to 20th Century conflicts. This enables learners to study the past from a variety of standpoints and to make connections and comparisons over time.

Enrichment

To further develop capital culture, History offers learners a range of experiences outside of the classroom environment. These opportunities are designed to develop learners experience and enhance their cultural understanding of the world around them. Experiences have included a WWI Battlefields visit, a visit to Auschwitz as part of the Lessons from Auschwitz educational programme, where learners explored the rich and powerful History of the Holocaust.  Learners have had the opportunity to visit the National Memorial Arboretum, RAF Cosford, Imperial War Museum North. In addition to out-of-school activities, the History Department runs additional weekly revision support for all Year 11 learners.

Impact

The Impact of the History Curriculum is measured through data produced at three key assessment points throughout the academic year. The quality of work produced in History aims to be of a consistently high standard whilst aspiring to be in the top quintile for all schools. With all learners displaying a good knowledge of the topics they are studying whilst developing the ability to link key historical concepts together from previous studied topics. In conjunction with this learners will also assimilate a broad range of historical skills that they can transfer to their next stage in education.

Y7

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Y8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Y9

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Assessment

Students are assessed both summatively on a termly basis but also formatively using participation in lessons and homework’s. Those summative assessments are highlighted in red above. The frequency of assessment and homework is reflective of the curriculum time we have with students, with years 7 and 9 having three lessons a fortnight and year 8 two lessons a fortnight.

The style of assessments vary across the years (evident in the curriculum diagrams above), allowing students to use a variety of methods of presentation such as modelling, computer animations, blogging, letter writing etc. but at the same time checking and building on their second order concepts. As students’ progress into year 9, many of the assessments will be centred on practice GCSE questions to prepare them for KS4.

All years will be assessed in the following skills:

Key Skills

Year 7 Year 8

Year 9

Key skill

Chronology

Historical Vocabulary

Analytical Narrative

Thematic History

Enquiry

 

 

 

 

 

C: Knowledge of terms like year, decade or century in their work and can apply them to historical situations with which they are familiar.

C: Fit chronological knowledge into a simple structure of historical understanding (e.g. ‘I know that 1536 was in the sixteenth century during the reign of Henry VIII’). Use an understanding of chronological terms to construct timelines over short and long periods of history.

HV: Remember a range of historically relevant vocabulary within a given historical period (e.g. Tudors) and can use it to describe the period.

AN: Understand what an Analytical Narrative is in the context of a story (eg. The events of the Battle of Hastings).

AN: Construct a narrative about the past that describes what happened and use some information to support the narrative.

TH: Understand what thematic history is and how the approach differs from other approaches.

C: Confident in placing a new period or topic within their own chronological reference and are beginning to make links between periods that they have studied.

C: Timelines and other work show an appreciation of the different scales of time and how they fit together.

HV: Remember and use historical vocabulary in their work and are beginning to assimilate new words into their current understanding. Understanding that historical language is contextually relevant and encouraged to ask questions about whether a term is appropriate in a new period or country. Link categories of causes to form a picture and begin to explain why something happened in history.

AN: Construct a descriptive narrative of the past with some development. Use factual information as support throughout the narrative.

C: Develop a simple chronological picture into which they can place new knowledge, although they may still need some support. They are beginning to make assumptions about periods because of knowledge that they already have.

HV: Use historical vocabulary correctly in their work and it is becoming a feature of the way in which they talk and write about history.

AN: Narrative accounts of the past include some analytical thinking. Working on developing links to key concepts and learning how to plan and organise information accurately.

Evidence

Usefulness of sources

Historical context used to analyse sources for a specific enquiry

Making inferences Historical environments

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Understand that sources are used by historians to find out about the past.

Appreciate that historians need to interrogate sources to work out what happened in the past.

Comment on the reliability of sources (‘biased’ may be used as a catch-all term) but have little understanding of how historians build an evidence picture.

Make generalised references to provenance (e.g. ‘sources from witnesses are more reliable’).

Distinguish between information about the past and evidence that historians extract from sources through a process of interrogation in order to  support  their claims, i.e. I can suggest that X was important because of evidence Y and Z.

Use sources to make simple inferences about the past and are beginning to understand that historians gather evidence by interrogating information with a particular purpose.

Use a small group of sources together to make simple inferences and present this as evidence.

Frame historically valid questions.

Make supported inferences about the past by using a source and the detail contained within it.

Introduction to the idea of utility and what might make a source useful to a historian for a specific enquiry.

Comment on the utility of a source as well as its reliability.

Distinguish between ideas of utility and reliability, and understand that historians use ‘unreliable’ sources as valuable pieces of evidence. Learn to support comments on sources by using source content and sometimes by referencing the provenance of a source.

Use general contextual knowledge of the period studied to support their comments.

To make judgements about sources and how they can be used for a specified enquiry. Support the comments by using precise content from sources and backing it up with sound contextual knowledge.

Causation and Consequence

Process of change (factors bringing it about, i.e. Causation)

Impact of change

(i.e. consequence)

Significance of cause/consequence

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Identify a number of causes of historical events and understand that these are a result of relationships in the past.

Identify a number of causes and categorise these into different types or groups of causes, e.g. short-term and long-term or ‘things to do with money’.

Understand consequence as the fixed result of all the possible causes and may regard the idea of consequences as inevitable or the only possible outcome.

Understanding of significance and why a person or event, might be significant or not.

Categorise causes and recognise that these groupings of causal factors are interrelated, e.g. a poor harvest can have effects on both the economy and society.

Use simple knowledge of the event or period to back up their causal statements.

Link categories of causes to form a simple causal picture and begin to explain why something happened in history.

Starting to use simple knowledge of the event or period to back up their statements.

Understand that events have consequences as well as causes and can describe one or more of the consequences of an event or development.

Link categories of causes to form a simple causal picture to explain why something happened in history. Challenging the belief that things happen because people wanted them to.

Use knowledge of the event or period to back up statements.

 

 Change and Continuity

Similarity and difference

Significance of change

Why there was rapid/slow change/why change continued

Nature and  extent  of change

Patterns of change (including turning points/significance) 

 

 

 

Describe change using features of the period or periods that they are studying. Understand that change often happens as a result of events or actions by individuals, rather than being the event or individual themselves.

Use some of the language of change to talk simply about the pace or extent of changes with which they are familiar.

Use some of the language of change to talk simply about the pace or extent of changes with which they are familiar. Recognise that a change may be important to one society or group of people but has little historical significance in another context.

Use the language of change to talk about developments and how they are measured in different ways (e.g. political, economic, pace, extent).

Recognise that a change may be important to one society or group of people but has little historical significance in another context.

Use the language of change to talk about developments and how they are measured in different ways (e.g. political, economic, pace, extent). Understand that the historical significance of changes differs depending on the timescale used or the person looking at the change.

Communicate an understanding of changes by identifying lines of development rather than just individual changes.

Interpretation

Interpretations – how they differ, why they differ

Evaluation of interpretations in knowledge of historical context

 

 

Pick out simple differences in accounts of the past.

Recognise that the arguments that people have had about the past are important to historical discipline and that history is made up of different stories about the past.

Descriptions of two opposing interpretations of an event or person.

Select and describe the key features of a historical interpretation and begin to talk about the messages that it might send to the people viewing it.

Learners can select and describe the key features of a historical interpretation and begin to talk about the messages that it might send to the people viewing it. They have a basic understanding that different interpretations (e.g. films, paintings, songs) are made to provide groups of people with a story about the past but cannot explain purpose beyond this.

Select and describe the key features of a variety of interpretations (e.g. visual, written, spoken) and explain the reasons for their construction (e.g. to entertain, to inform, to persuade). Understand that this is linked to who made the interpretations, but will not be able to go beyond simple statements. Regard interpretations and formulate opinions as to their validity and historical purpose.

Select and describe the key features of a variety of interpretations (e.g. visual, written, spoken) and explain the reasons for their construction (e.g. to entertain, to inform, to persuade). They will understand that this is linked to who made the interpretations.

Link the construction of different interpretations to the use of different sources. Understand that historians can explain the same event through different stories (e.g. the abolition of the slave trade as an economic argument, as the work of white abolitionists, or as a story of slave revolts and resistance).

Year 8 will follow the same banding and Year 9 will follow the 9-1 grading system.

Homework

Homework set is reflective of the point in the curriculum the students are at. On average students are set between 4-6 pieces of homework a term dependent on the type of activity. For example, a modelling homework is more demanding on time and therefore students will have less homework that term. Some of the types of homework students may be asked to complete:

  • Revise for a test
  • Research task based on wider reading on the topic taught outside of the classroom
  • Complete research for assessments

All homework will be set on SMHW for both students and parents to view.

Key stage 4

The current curriculum follows the Edexcel specification. The current specification is a two-year course that is examined by 3 exams. The course was chosen as it allows students to study a variety of topics over. There is also a variety of skills used and examined making it a challenging yet engaging course.

Y10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Y11

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Assessment

At KS4 students undergo two mock examinations, one at the beginning of the summer term in April in year 10 and in year 11 at the end of the Autumn term in December. These will be past exam papers and the truest likeness to the exams the students will undergo in the summer of year 11. In order to prepare students to answer these, there will be end of unit tests of a similar style and the end of each topic (illustrated above). In addition students will continually be assessed using practise questions throughout the topic and various self and peer assessment used to help students to understand how to attain the highest possible level in answers.

Homework

Students will be set work appropriately depending on the part of the course that is being taught. Most often homework will either be revision for a practise question in class, revision for an end of unit test or for the mocks. However in addition to this, students will be asked to carry out independent research or other smaller tasks based on classwork. They should have at least three pieces of homework a half term of varying length. If they are revising for an end of unit test they should spend at least 3-4 hours doing this, therefore revising for a mock should be reflective of the number of units covered e.g. 3 units in year 10 therefore 9-12 hours. A practise question would only require 30 minutes of revision on average.

Key Stage 5

Currently students follow the AQA History specification as a linear A-Level. Two members of staff teach units simultaneously.

Year 12:

Tudors: Henry VII-Henry VIII-Edward VI

American Dream: Truman-Kennedy

NEA-Women’s Rights (Summer Term)

Year 13

Tudors: Mary I- Elizabeth I

American Dream: Johnson- Reagan

NEA submitted February

Assessment and homework

Students are expected to complete various tasks on a weekly basis. Quite often these will be practise source and essay questions, or at least to plan and revise for those being timed in lessons. In addition, they will be given reading and research to do to enhance their understanding. Each unit will be assessed once or twice a half term, which would roughly be 6-8 assessments a half term over the entire specification. Students will sit a mock exam In the summer term of Year 12.