Our teaching and learning policy identifies the barriers to learning for all in our community. Through our core values of aspiration, respect and resilience we are devoted to removing these barriers and promoting the ‘common good’ by ensuring that all of our students know the ‘best that has been thought and said’ in history in order to become educated historians. ‘A people without knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots’, Marcus Garvey.
Our curriculum and lessons are driven by Big Questions, often linked to academic historians views, which students strive to answer. Students are provided with challenging academic readings at least once a half term, alongside Meanwhile Elsewhere tasks to expand the breadth of their historical knowledge.
We offer an inclusive and diverse history curriculum, covering topics such as the Black Tudors and the contribution of peoples from the Empire in WWI.
In Year 7 students start with a brief introduction to ‘What is History?’ where we explore the role of an historian and the use of historical sources.
Students then embark on a study of Anglo-Saxon Britain with a particular focus on how Anglo-Saxon monarchs united England before moving on to Medieval Britain. The Medieval Britain unit begins with an examination of The Norman Conquest, before moving on to study life in Medieval Britain and the nature and distribution of power in medieval society. Students will develop an understanding of the significance of the following events, Magna Carta, the Black Death, the Murder of Thomas Beckett, and the Peasants’ Revolt.
After looking at the Medieval Period students study the changing nature of the church under the Tudor Monarchs and develop an understanding of how the power of the monarchs changed by studying the Stuarts and the English Civil War.
We end the year with a study of the development of democracy in Britain. This covers topics such as The Glorious Revolution, the Peterloo Massacre and the Suffragettes.
Students in Year 8 study the impact of Britain and its Empire on a number of different areas. To begin with students study the Native Americans and how the impact of settlers affected their culture. We then look at whether the British Empire was a force of good for India. This is followed by a term looking at the Transatlantic Slave Trade. We begin by looking at the experience of enslaved peoples in the Americas. Students will then look at the Civil Rights Movement in the USA and the changes that occurred after slavery was abolished.
This is followed by a study of the development of Leamington Spa and it’s links to the Transatlantic slave trade. Covering key individuals such as Benjamin Satchwell and Bertie Greatheed.
We finish the year with a look at the impact that industrialisation and empire had on groups in society. Through a study of the victims of Jack the Ripper, we build up a picture of life for women and children in Victorian cities.
In Year 9 students study the impact of war in the 20th Century. We begin by studying the outbreak of World War One and develop an understanding of why it was known as the Great War. We then look at a number of different aspects of the Second World War. These include the events of World War Two and the impact of the war on Coventry with a unit entitled “Did Coventry Keep Calm and Carry On?”
Students will then complete a detailed study of the Holocaust using a range of primary sources. We work closely with Holocaust Educational Trust in completing this study. Amy Graves, a member of the history department, is a trained educator for the Holocaust Educational Trust.
We finish the year with a look at the Cold War and its impact, including lessons on Berlin, the Cuban Missile Crisis and Vietnam.
The History department follows the AQA syllabus for GCSE History which involves two exams at the end of year 11.
· Conflict and tension, 1918–1939. This wider world depth study enables students to understand the complex and diverse interests of different individuals and states including the Great Powers. It looks at concepts such as national self-determination, ideas of internationalism and the challenges of revising the peace settlement. It focuses on the causes of the Second World War and seeks to show how and why conflict occurred and why it proved difficult to resolve the issues which caused it. This study also considers the role of key individuals and groups in shaping change, as well as how they were affected by and influenced international relations.
· Germany, 1890–1945: Democracy and dictatorship. This period study focuses on the development of Germany during a turbulent half century of change. It was a period of democracy and dictatorship – the
development and collapse of democracy and the rise and fall of Nazism. Students will study the political, economic, social and cultural aspects of these two developments and the role ideas played in influencing change. They will also look at the role of key individuals and groups in shaping change and the impact the developments had on them.
· Britain: its health and the people from the Normans in 1000AD to the present day. They will study how health developed in Britain over a long period of time and they will investigate the causes, scale, nature and consequences of short and long term developments, their impact on British society and how they were related to the key features and characteristics of the periods during which they took place.
· Norman England 1066-1100. This option allows students to study in depth the arrival of the Normans and the establishment of their rule. This depth study will focus on major aspects of Norman rule, considered from economic, religious, political, social and cultural standpoints of this period and arising contemporary and historical controversies.
· Trip to Berlin – In KS4 we offer a three day trip to Berlin to support our study of Germany.
· Topography of Terror – museum on Nazi terror and is on the site of the Gestapo and SS offices.
· Sachsenhausen concentration camp.
· The Jewish Museum
· DDR Museum – Museum on what it was like to live in East Berlin and East Germany.
· Checkpoint Charlie.
· Stasi Prison Museum.
· Tour of the Reichstag building.
What next? Careers with History
The History A-Level is a highly regarded academic qualification among the universities and employers alike. The ‘Which’ consumer guides wrote the following in their ‘Which subject, Which career? ‘ Historians are regarded as having had an education that trains their minds to assemble, organise and present facts and opinions and this is very useful quality in many walks of life and careers…history is an excellent preparation for very many other jobs.’
History graduates often go on to work in various fields such as Law, Journalism, Business, Economics and Politics.