Head of Department

Miss Dawton


Careers in the Classroom

Subject:  History

History is the study of the past. In History, we investigate the written histories and, where possible, evidence from the times. We aim to understand what happened, the reasons and motives of people involved, the causes that arose around them, the events and their consequences. We aim to build knowledge to help make sense of the past and to provide a context for understanding in the future.

Students practise their own reconstructions of the past. They find out what life was like and answer historical problems by explaining events, analysing the causes and consequences, successes and failures, evaluating evidence and questioning interpretations. In the process, we hope that while they take History and long afterwards students find the subject as fascinating as we do, whether looking at the experience of an individual or asking the big questions about society, such as why democracy was replaced by dictatorship or in what ways industrialisation brought progress.

Our aim is for students to learn how the subject works as a discipline, how it gives people an understanding of the world, themselves and others, past and present. They learn the importance of posing questions, how to approach different questions and the significance of altering the question. They learn that history has no laws subject to proof and so no final answers, but a seeking after truth that is refined as new evidence emerges and historians revise the previous interpretations.

All the ills of mankind, all the tragic misfortunes that fill the history books, all the political blunders, all the failures of the great leaders have arisen merely from a lack of skill at dancing. Molière, 1622-1673, French playwright

Independent Learning

Students are expected to organise their work independently and meet all deadlines. Students are encouraged to take responsibility for planning, drafting and proof reading their work.

In the event students are unable to attend school for reasons such as emergency snow closure, etc., they should pursue activities relevant to their current topic available on the website: www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/education

In Years 7-9 students are regularly assessed using common assessment tasks. Annual formal examinations are held for those in year 8 and 9. Students are assessed using the 1-9 GCSE grades.


Year 7:

How did William gain control?

Who was to blame for the murder of Thomas Beckett?

Was King John really a bad king?

How did Elizabeth I survive?

How important was Muhammad in the founding of Islam?

How and why did the Islamic Empire spread?

Why did a division between the Sunni’s and Shi’ites occur?

The city of Baghdad

The Crusades

The Ottomans

What was the impact of the Black Death on the lives of ordinary people?

How did the industrial revolution change the lives of ordinary people?



Year 8:


Why do revolutions happen?

Why was there a Peasants Revolt?

Why did Henry VIII break from Rome? What were the consequences for England?

What caused the American Revolution, and what were its consequences?


Why did it take so long for British working classes to gain the vote?

What was the significance of the Chartist movement?

How and why did women campaign for the vote in the early 20th Century?


What was the ‘Renaissance?’

Why was this period important?

Why were there major changes in art during the Renaissance?

What can art, architecture and music show us about people’s lives in the past?


Year 9:



What are wars and why do they happen?


WW1 What were the causes of the First World War? What happened on the Western Front? What was life like for the ordinary soldier on the Western Front? How did World War One end?




WW2 Who were the key participants and why?  When did Allied defeat seem most likely?  When and how was Allied victory secured?  (What were the key turning points of the Second World War?)

What were the causes of the Slave trade, and how did it develop?



What was Apartheid in South Africa and how was it removed?


What was the Civil Rights movement in America and what were the significant changes in race relations in twentieth century America?



AQA GCSE History consists of two papers, Paper 1 (1 ½ hours) and Paper 2 (1 ½ hours); both are worth equal marks. These exams are taken at the end of year 11. During the course students regularly undertake end of unit tests. They sit formal end of year/mock exams in year 10 and in year 11. There is no coursework in GCSE History.

Paper 1:

Conflict and Tension 1919-1939

Making peace after the First World War
League of Nations – success and failure
The road to the Second World War in the 1930s

Germany 1890-1945

The Kaiser’s Germany 1890-1918

Germany’s role in WW1 1914-1918

Weimar Germany, 1918-1933
Rise of Hitler
Nazi control of Germany
Life in Nazi Germany
Germany during the Second World War


Paper 2:

Norman England 1066-1100

Conquest and control

Life in Norman England

The Normans and the Church

Health and the People 1000-present

Medicine stands still

The beginnings of change

A revolution in medicine

Modern medicine


Sixth Form:

We offer History at both A-Level and IB (Higher and Standard). Areas of study include:

The Tudors

Russia and its Rulers 1855-1955

Italian and German unification

Stalinist Russia

The Cold War

Further details of the individual courses can be found in our course handbooks



World War Two


Take a look at this challenging site from the National Archives. It shows World War 2 through animation and maps – very interesting! http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/education/worldwar2/theatres-of-war/western-europe/1939/index.htm

A summary of the key events of WWII – http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/wwtwo/ww2_summary_01.shtml

Voices of Dunkirk – Listen to the stories of eight survivors of Dunkirk – http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/wwtwo/dunkirk_audio.shtml

How did France fall? – Study an animated map – http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/wwtwo/launch_ani_fall_france_campaign.shtml

The bomber and the bombed – Film about the bombing raids of WWII – http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/wwtwo/launch_ani_wwtwo_movies_bombers.shtml

The Story of the end of the war? – study the allies progress from D-Day to Berlin – http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/wwtwo/dday_berlin_gallery.shtml


Who contributed to the abolition of the slave trade? Read these stories about the unsung heroes of abolition – http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/abolition/abolitionists_gallery.shtml

The abolition of slavery – an interactive map – http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/abolition/launch_anim_slavery.shtml

Slavery and industrialisation – How much did Britain benefit from slavery? http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/abolition/launch_anim_slavery.shtml

How can you find out about slavery in your local area? http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/abolition/local_trade_history_article_01.shtml


Have a look at this Youtube clip about the history of the British Empire:


The Voyages of Captain Cook – http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/empire_seapower/captaincook_01.shtml

How were maps made? The changing view of the world –  http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/interactive/animations/map_making/index_embed.shtml

Book recommendations:

 ‘Chronicle of the Twentieth Century’, Derrick Mercer

‘The Diary of Anne Frank’

‘The Long Shadow’, David Reynolds

‘Summits’,  David Reynolds

The Heart of Darkness – J Conrad

The Man Who Would be King – R Kipling

Collected poems of R Kipling


Emergency Work:

Your teacher/s may well have set you some work via SMH, please check this first. If they have not been able to do this please take some time to explore the enrichment links above


Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!