Introduction to the Subject and Team
Ms Laura-Jo Green
Curriculum Team Leader
Our two key driving aims are to ensure that all students are able to enjoy learning about history and that all students are aware of how to improve their work. We strive to meet our goals through creative and engaging lessons, through exciting lesson resources and by studying some of the most interesting episodes from world and British history.
We also run the ever-popular Battlefields trip to the First World War sites in France and Belgium and offer a range of opportunities both at lunchtimes and after school for support, so that students can take their learning further outside of the classroom.
Course Content at Key Stage 3
Students receive a one hour lesson per week in Year 7 and two one hour lessons per week in Year 8.
During year 7, students will be introduced to the discipline of history through historical artefacts and getting some ‘hands-on’ history about life in Ossett in the past. Students will then move on to study: ‘Invaders and Settlers’, ‘The Medieval Church and Kings’, ‘The Tudors; Power or Love?’ and ‘Disasters of the 1600s’.
In Year 8 students will study the growth of the British Empire and the slave trade followed by the industrial revolution, World War 1, the interwar years, World War 2and the Holocaust.
For year 7 and 8 we recommend using the ‘British History’ section of the BBC website.
There is also a lighter look at history which involves games and quizzes on the BBC ‘History for Kids’ section.
Course Content at Key Stage 4
- Medicine in Britain (1250 to present) with the historic environment section on the Western Front – 30% of grade
- Henry VIII and the American West – 40% of grade
- Weimar and Nazi Germany – 30% of grade
Exam board/Specification: Edexcel History (9-1)
Assessment and examinations:
- Medicine in Britain (1250 to present) with the historic environment section on the Western Front. 30% of the grade, 1hr 15 minutes
- Henry VIII (20% grade) and The American West (20% of grade), 1hr 45 minutes
- Nazi Germany. 30% of the grade, 1hr 20 minutes
In Year 9 and 10 pupils have 2 lessons a week, in the current Year 11 pupils have 3 lessons a week.
A useful website for the Germany section of the course is BBC Bitesize.
However, we would advise pupils not to use BBC Bitesize to revise other topics because they are not available for our exam board and students may find themselves revising something that they will not need to know.
We recommend that pupils buy the CGP Edexcel History revision guide. This is available from the Finance Office in school for £3.50 (a huge discount from it’s recommended price).Edexcel GCSE History Specification
Career Opportunities and Progression within the Subject
History is an incredibly well-respected qualification because of the important life skills that it allows for students to develop. There are a great number of skills that students will develop such as:
- Learning not to believe everything they read.
- Learning to construct a reasoned argument that is supported by evidence.
- The ability to see things from different perspectives.
- The ability to analyse information and make inferences.
A History qualification is seen as a facilitating subject by the top Russell Group Universities in the country, therefore if you opt to study history at GCSE or at A-Level and aspire to go down the academic route then a qualification in History is going to carry additional weight on your application form.
There are several careers that are traditionally associated with history qualifications such as careers in law, in education, in politics, in the police force, in the civil service, in journalism in museums and many more. For example, the following people have history degrees:
- Sacha Baron Cohen (Ali G, Borat etc…)
- Jonathan Ross (Presenter)
- Loius Theroux (Investigative Journalist)
- David Blunkett (Politician)
- Lord Sainsbury (Founder of the famous supermarket)
- And former Prime Minister Tony Blair is on record as having said ‘I wish I had studied History at University.’
George Santayana, a Spanish philosopher once said, ‘Those who cannot remember the past are doomed to repeat it.’ We believe that all students can learn lessons from the past that help them to understand the world that they live in, as well as the world that they will experience in the future.
How Parents Can Support Learning
- Encourage your child to research around the topic they are studying in school by reading the BBC history website.
- Literacy is a key skill in history so regular reading will help your child make progress; it could be a reference book or fiction, however reading aloud to another person will increase vocabulary and confidence.
- Encourage your child to proofread their written work and look up any spellings they are unsure of in a dictionary.
- In preparation for an exam or assessment help them to create a revision timetable which details which subject they will revise and when. Students will have assessments they will need to revise for at the end of every topic.
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