“We are not makers of history. We are made by history.” Dr Martin Luther King Jr
History is, at its heart, a quest towards a better understanding of who we are. Our aim is to provide a high-quality history education that will help students gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. We want to inspire students’ curiosity to know more about the past and to equip our students to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgment. Their history studies help students to understand the complexity of people’s lives in the past and the present, the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups, as well as their own identity and the challenges of their time.
Our curriculum is underpinned by four questions which are revisited throughout our chronological studies:
• How were people in the past ruled?
• How did people in the past live?
• What did people in the past believe?
• How do we know about the past and how has the past been interpreted?
Students begin Year 7 with an introduction to history looking at how historians work. Students then move on to study of British History and its turning points from the causes and consequences of the Norman Conquest of 1066 including Feudalism, Magna Carta, the Black Death, the religious roller-coaster of the English Reformation under the Tudors and Stuarts and the English Civil War. A local study will focus on the role of Liverpool in the slave trade.
Year 8 explore and evaluate the causes and impact of the British Empire and the Industrial Revolution. Students analyse in-depth the causes and consequences of WW1 including the Treaty of Versailles and the rise of the Nazis in Germany and evaluate the impact on The German people. Students investigate the background to and significance of the Holocaust and complete Key Stage 3 by creating their own individual project on an aspect of WW2 using the historical skills they have learnt.
Year 9 GCSE students examine change and continuity with an examination of Medicine Through Time. This begins in Medieval Britain and extends up to the present day - with an in-depth case-study of injuries, illnesses and treatments on the Western Front during World War I.
Year 10 study the GCSE Edexcel Units Early Elizabethan England 1558-1588, this examines the challenges Elizabeth faced in terms of religion, succession and plots both at home and abroad whilst building an empire in the Age of Exploration. A study of the American West 1835-1895 examines the lives of Plains Indians, settlement of the West, the impact of cattle ranching and railroads and the destruction of the Plains Indians way of life.
Year 11 study GCSE Edexcel unit 'Weimar and Nazi Germany' exploring the political, social and economic issues of Weimar and the subsequent rise and control of the Nazi State with particular reference to different historical interpretations.
Year 12 and 13 study the reformed A Level AQA 'Unit 1H Tsarist and Communist Russia 1855- 1964' exploring the challenges facing the Tsarist regime and its eventual collapse, followed by the emergence of Communist dictatorship 1917-1941 and the rise and impact of the Stalinist system. Unit 2S Modern Britain 1951-2007' examines post war affluence, the changing political, social and economic landscape of Britain; and judges the effectiveness of government solutions.
To implement this curriculum:
• Lessons are collaboratively planned to ensure consistency and to create engaging and informative learning opportunities. Regular assessments will be used to plan future targets and interventions.
• Knowledge organisers are used for homework for all KS3 and KS4 topic areas and lessons begin with low stakes retrieval quizzes based on the knowledge organiser.
• Great historical writing is just one way to inspire students. We will incorporate the work of great historians like Marc Morris, Helen Castor, and David Starkey into lessons. This will lead onto a consideration of why and how historical interpretations develop.
We expect the impact of our curriculum to be twofold:
• Every student will know more, think deeper and write better as they develop their historical knowledge and skills throughout Key Stage 3 and progress onto GCSE and A Level.
• Our students will be informed citizens ready to take their place in society.