“Study the past if you wish to define the future!”
The world is complex and our place in it unique. We cannot fully understand the world around us if we don’t study the past and understand the choices and decisions of our predecessors. Why do societies change and develop? Why does conflict play such a central role? What is the role of power? How does the past turn on chance events and moments? Answers to these questions are what lie at the heart of our modern world as it was shaped and formed by the past.
History is fundamentally the study of people and what drives them, inspires them and causes them to make decisions which we may now find astonishing. We are, in effect, studying ourselves. We are looking to analyse the past to help us understand the development of human society so far. Is it cyclical or linear? What do we have in common with past eras? Anything? What drives progress? Are we progressing? Why is the world so unequal?
History gets you to think in depth. It gets you to analyse and form opinions, consider complex ideas and form your own opinion based on solid evidence. It develops the skills of reasoning and evaluation. It poses counter-factual hypotheses and forces you to defend an opinion. It is not just about knowing the story of the past but analysing its component parts looking for causes, effects and consequences and looking at the relative importance of different factors. No other subject expects you to think in such an analytical way.
Subject Key Aims
To develop curiosity and fire students’ imaginations about how the past directly influences and shapes the present
To encourage an enjoyment of thinking about complex events and the importance of forming and supporting opinions
To improve written and verbal communication skills of explanation and analysis
To be open to having your ideas challenged and being prepared to reformulate them based on evidence
To enable the study of a traditionally academic subject that opens doors to a variety of careers
Each year group explores topics through enquiry questions to encourage an investigative approach.
Year 7 (one lesson a week)
- Medieval History
- Who won the Battle of Hastings and why?
- Impact of the Norman Invasion: How did the Normans keep control?
- Becket’s murder: Why was there a power struggle?
- Peasants’ Revolt: Why were the peasants revolting?
- Magna Carta: Why was it significant?
- Local Studies: Liverpool & Lowton
Year 8 (two lessons a week)
- Power struggles: How and why have people fought for power and democracy?
- Why did Henry VIII break from Rome?
- Does ‘Bloody Mary’ deserve her nickname?
- How much of a threat was the Spanish Armada?
- How foolish was Charles I?
- The Transatlantic Slave Trade
- Why did the First World War break out?
- Experiences of war
- How did Hitler become leader and establish a dictatorship?
- Why did the Great War become the First World War so quickly?
- How did Hitler become a legal dictator?
- Cold War Crises: How close was war?
- The 60s / 70s / 80s / 90s / noughties – which decade was the most revolutionary?
- Exploration of life in the three time periods
Year 9, 10 & 11 (From Sep 2017, Edexcel History 9-1)
Medicine in Britain 1250 to present
- Students study the development of medicine in Britain
- Medieval Medicine 1200 – 1500
- Renaissance Medicine 1500-1700
- Medicine 1700-1900
- Modern Medicine 1900-2017
- Students will investigate how ideas about cause of illness, prevention of illness and treatment of illness changed and developed including the role of key individuals such as Galen, Harvey, Jenner, Pasteur, Watson and Crick.
- Students also complete a study on the British Sector of the Western Front
- Key battles
- Structure of the trench network and evacuation route
- Treatment of war injuries
- Overcoming problems
- Development of plastic surgery
- The questions focus on sources.
Period study and British depth study Superpower relations and the Cold War 1941-1991 & Early Elizabethan England 1558-1588
- Cold War 1941-1991 Superpower relations USA v. USSR
- How and why did the Cold War start?
- Key flash points: Berlin Airlift, Hungarian Uprising, Berlin Wall, Cuban Missile Crisis and Prague Spring.
- Why was there a period of détente?
- What was the Second Cold War?
- How did the Cold War end?
Early Elizabethan England
- What was Elizabethan society like?
- How was Elizabeth threatened as monarch? Rebellions and attempted invasion
- How did Elizabeth keep control?
Modern depth study Weimar and Nazi Germany 1918-1939
- The Weimar Republic – How and why was it created?
- How was the Weimar Republic threatened? Political putsches, economic crises, hyperinflation and international isolation.
- How did Stresemann create stability?
- How did the Wall Street Crash affect Germany?
- The development of the Nazi Party
- How did the Nazis come to power?
- How did the Nazis create a totalitarian dictatorship that ended democracy?
- You will look at this 20 year period in detail considering what it would have been like as an ordinary German to live through it and how lives changed during the inter-war period.
- There are three exam papers. All require extended written answers (essays). Papers 1 and 3 include sources.
- Paper 1 Thematic study and historic environment Medicine in Britain c.1250 – present / The British sector of the Western Front Worth: 30% Written exam: 1 hour 15 minutes
- Paper 2 Period study and British depth study Superpower relations and the Cold War 1941-1991 / Early Elizabethan England Worth: 40% Written exam: 1 hour 45 minutes
- Paper 3 Modern depth study Weimar and Nazi Germany 1918-1939 Worth: 30% Written exam: 1 hour and 20 minutes