Our ambition is to instil a love of history in our students. We will challenge them to be curious about past societies and how and why events change over time. We ensure that they acquire the skills necessary to navigate the vast amount of information available in our modern society in order to build helpful and accurate reconstructions of the past. Our curriculum is broad and balanced, with a largely chronological approach that we believe allows our students to develop key historical knowledge about Britain, Europe and the wider world. We will revisit key concepts such as kingship, legitimacy, authority, religion and social hierarchy at all levels in encouraging students to retain and recall appropriate knowledge.
We have engaging and exciting programmes of study at all levels of history teaching, with plenty of opportunity to acquire essential cultural knowledge as well as the challenge of developing an understanding of past societies from other parts of the world, for example the Americas and Tang China. Through their studies students will frequently encounter a range of challenging and appropriate source material, requiring them to be aware of contrasting views in a wide range of contexts. Students will revisit skills learnt to provide a foundation for future success. Our teaching encourages the development and continual refinement of key historical skills: acquiring knowledge, development of argument, extended writing, evaluating sources and recognising how, where and why opinions about historical significance differ amongst professional historians; added to this, we ensure that students are exposed to historical literature and more demanding academic texts in order to prioritise their historical literacy. We encourage the students to take account of context when assessing the events of the past. In combination these skills provide the crucial foundation for success at all levels of history learning.
Students develop and build upon their prior historical knowledge and skills at all levels in order to make informed judgements; teachers constantly reference prior learning and key concepts to help students understand the basis on which they have made a statement or assertion. ‘Meanwhile elsewhere’ homeworks help to develop our students’ understanding of a global historical framework. From the outset students are guided to discuss and use historical concepts such as cause and consequence, and continuity and change. As historians they are challenged to evaluate the provenance of historical sources and reflect upon the impact that this evaluation has on their work. Through commitment to project work students will have the opportunity to apply these skills and make personal choices about the period and place of their own research. We firmly believe that the impact of studying history has deep and wide-ranging effects across a student’s whole learning journey: how to be a critical thinker, how to handle different sources of evidence appropriately and effectively, the importance of accuracy and detail and how to coherently build and sustain a line of argument.
Head of Department
Dr R Frampton