The Newton Abbot College History curriculum helps to explain the world as it is by exploring the world as it was, in an intriguing and ambitious way. Understanding is developed around a spine of British History. Enquiries explore global and local scales, emphasising the complexity of the past and the constructed, contested nature of History. To this end, students develop their disciplinary thinking, exploring the past from multiple perspectives and viewpoints. We strive to make our curriculum representative of the past’s inhabitants, aiming to understand the broadest possible picture and the details that illuminate it. These threads are combined and sequenced to craft a rich, broad, and structured understanding of the past for every student.
Increasing students’ historical knowledge, curiosity, critical thinking, and communication skills are all key functions of our curriculum. Our curriculum will also help students to question and influence people and communities around them.
Our curriculum enables students to:
- Gain a rich knowledge of the past to be able to build a sense of narrative, building upon knowledge already gained at primary school
- Become enquiring learners. Feel confident to make use of evidence, analyse sources and recognise why different opinions exist
- Be inspired by people and events in the past and to take responsibility by becoming responsible citizens.
- Understand, accept, and show respect to people and cultures who are different to themselves, and in doing so, be inclusive
- Develop strong literacy skills. Reading is at the heart of the History curriculum and our curriculum encourages students to develop their disciplinary literacy
- Engage with big questions
History at Newton Abbot College is taught by passionate subject specialists who provoke curiosity and a desire to investigate events and people. Topics are delivered through short enquiry questions which enable students to develop their disciplinary knowledge and strengthen their ability to apply procedural concepts. Enquiries at Newton Abbot College are grounded in recent scholarship of historians and challenge students to reflect on the contested nature of history. Staff within the department attend regular subject specific CPD and, our annual subscription of Teaching History and membership to the Historical Association ensures that our knowledge and curriculum is kept up to date with current pedagogy.
At Newton Abbot College, students continue to develop the knowledge and skills gained at KS2 to ensure they understand that Britain exists in a global context. At KS3, students will extend and deepen their chronologically secure knowledge by studying a range of enquiries that focus on the concept of power. What is power? What does power look like? Where does power lie? Students will then move on to consider the concept of rights by studying a series of British and global enquiries. Students will identify significant events, individuals, make connections, draw contrasts, and analyse specific historical trends. They will use historical terms with confidence and accuracy. Students will continue to refer to elements of local history and set these in chronological context, building upon references that have already been made at KS1 and KS2. Topics at GCSE and A Level are carefully selected and sequenced to ensure that students continue to build upon the narrative and skills developed at KS3.
All History lessons have a strong focus on literacy, with whole class reading being present in most enquiries. Students regularly complete pieces of extended writing and teachers give timely and effective feedback which enables students to make improvements.
Our curriculum is enriched by the opportunity to join the KS3 History Club, KS4 and 5 ‘Forum Academic Reading Club’ and to partake in a popular Year 10 trip to the First World War Battlefields. Students at KS5 can also study A Level Politics which is run from within the department.
History is a very popular subject at Newton Abbot College across all Key Stages, and we are proud of the progress made by students within the department. Our students can articulate the reasons why they study History and students enjoy learning the subject. Students leave Newton Abbot College with a strong narrative of the past 1000 years of British history and elements of world History. They develop rich historical knowledge, curiosity, critical thinking, and improved communication skills. They are inquisitive and History is a popular choice for students to go on and study at university.