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History is an enjoyable and varied subject which enables students to learn a combination of skills as well as gain an understanding of events in the past. History teaches students to evaluate evidence and reach substantiated judgements, whilst simultaneously encouraging empathy and a wider understanding of the world around us. Students are encouraged to develop a sceptical attitude to evidence which they can apply to situations later in life.
We begin History in Year 7 with a unit which provides students with a clear chronological overview, on which they can build their studies. We then undertake thematic and period studies covering the years 1066 to 1750. Our Historical enquiries include ‘Who was the best Medieval King?’ and ‘Does Oliver Cromwell deserve a statue outside parliament?’ Each of these units are designed to encourage students to develop their investigative and interpretative skills.
In Year 8 we continue our study of History through depth and thematic studies. We begin the year with a thematic study of the Changing Nature of Warfare – with mini case studies ranging from the Battle of Hastings and Charge of the Light Brigade, through to the First World War – this provides students not only with an overview of key battles and tactics, but also how conflicts impact on the people at home. We then move into an investigation into the horrors of the Slave Trade, and go on to develop the story of the fight for people’s rights with depth studies looking at the fight for suffrage for both men and women. We then ensure that complex political ideologies are understood by looking at the rise of extreme views during the early Twentieth Century before finishing the year exploring the strange and sometimes unpleasant history of public entertainment.
The first few half terms of Year 9 serve as the foundation to GCSE with careful investigations into The First World War, Weimar Germany and Nazi Germany. All of these topics serve as key contextual knowledge for later studies and offer students the chance to develop their historical skills to a GCSE level. We then begin our first GCSE exam unit with an exciting depth study into the interwar era entitled ‘Conflict and Tension, 1918-1939’.
In Year 10, students will cover a period study looking at the expansion and consolidation of America, 1840-1895, before undertaking the thematic study into the Restoration period 1660-1685, where possible this unit will include a visit to a historic site linked to the era.
In Year 11 History students learn their final GCSE unit entitled ‘Health and the People, 1100-present’. This is an interesting journey through the history of medicine and explores the key discoveries that brought us to the sophisticated medicine of the twenty first century. We also offer an entertaining enrichment opportunity to really bring the weird and wonderful world of Medieval medicine alive! From the middle of the year detailed revision takes place so that students are well prepared for the two GCSE exam papers in the Summer.