History fires pupils' curiosity and imagination, moving and inspiring them with the dilemmas, choices and beliefs of people in the past. It helps pupils develop their own identities through an understanding of history at personal, local, national and international levels. It helps them to ask and answer questions of the present by engaging with the past.
There are six key skills that students will refine through the study of history in engaging and stimulating topics. They are: change and continuity, cause and consequence, significance, source skills, interpretations and knowledge.
At Buile Hill Visual Arts College, we think that History is important, interesting and rewarding. In 2016 72% of students studying history achieved an A*-C.
“If we forget the past we are doomed to repeat it: first as tragedy and then as farce.”
Key Stage 3
In Years 7 and 8 pupils will study a range of topics through engaging enquiry questions including:
- How did William change Britain following the Norman Conquest?
- What was the most significant problem for Medieval Kings?
- Did crime and punishment become more brutal over time?
- What was Henry VIII’s biggest motivation: love, money, faith or power?
- What was the most destructive event during the Renaissance?
- How did the lives of Black Americans change from the abolition of slavery?
In year 9 pupils who opt to study History at GCSE will deepen their understanding of the world around us and how issues in the past inform decisions made about today. The topics studied are:
- The Suffragettes
- The causes of World War One
- Trench Warfare
- The rise of Adolf Hitler
- The Holocaust
Students are assessed each half term through a GCSE style assessment which lasts one hour. The results of this test is included in the progress checks that are sent home throughout the year. All students also have an end of year examination.
Homework is set fortnightly and is a variety of research, creative projects and extended writing.
Key Stage 4
Year 10 and 11 pupils study AQA History. Pupils are assessed through two examination papers each worth 50% of the final grade.
Topic 1D America, 1920–1973: Opportunity and inequality
This period study focuses on the development of the USA during a turbulent half century of change. It was a period of opportunity and inequality – when some Americans lived the 'American Dream' whilst others grappled with the nightmare of poverty, discrimination and prejudice.
Students will study the political, economic, social and cultural aspects of these two developments and the role ideas played in bringing about change. They will also look at the role of key individuals and groups in shaping change and the impact the developments had on them.
- The Boom
- The Red Scare
- Sacco and vanzetti
- The Great Depression
- The New Deal
- The Civil Rights Campaign
Topic 2B 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.
This topic includes:
- The Treaty of Versailles
- The League of Nations
- Hitler’s foreign policy
Topic 2A Britain: Health and the people: c1000 to the present day
This thematic study will enable students to gain an understanding of how medicine and public health developed in Britain over a long period of time. It considers 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. Although the focus of this study is the development of medicine and public health in Britain, it will draw on wider world developments that impacted on the core themes. Students will have the opportunity to see how some ideas and events in the wider world affected Britain and will promote the idea that key themes did not develop in isolation, but these ideas and events should be referenced in terms of their effects on the core theme for Britain and British people.
This option focuses on the following questions:
- Why has there been progress in the health of the British people?
- How and why has the pace and scale of medical development varied at different times?
- What impact has medical progress had on people and society?
- How and why have different factors been more important than others for individual medical developments?
- What is the significance of key individuals or events in the history of medical development?
Norman England, c1066–c1100
This option allows students to study in depth the arrival of the Normans and the establishment of their rule. The 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.
- The succession crisis in 1066
- The battle of Stamford Bridge
- The Battle of Hastings
- The feudal system
- The domesday book
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Pupils will be set regular homework to support what they are studying in lessons. Key Stage 3 pupils should expect at least one piece of homework a fortnight, and pupils in Key Stage 4 should expect at least one per week.
How will I be monitored and assessed?
Our pupils are given a History target level at the beginning of the year and they are given opportunities to meet their target, and even surpass it throughout the year. Our teachers assess work regularly and at the end of each topic, pupils are tested using examinations or questions which demand an extended response. Pupils also carry out a self-assessment.
Target levels are reviewed at the end of every topic and at various times of the year, books are carefully monitored by staff to ensure that all pupils are working to their full potential.
After school clubs
Pupils are offered the opportunity to attend a Humanities film club in which we watch, study and critique documentaries or historical films. We discuss the events, or human story behind them and report on their utility and accuracy. This is held every Tuesday in H13 with Miss Flynn. The history department also offer weekly homework help for all students in H17 with Miss Burke. KS4 ASPIRE exam skills is held every Thursday with Miss McBride in H16. Year 11 are expected to attend weekly revision sessions on Wednesdays to prepare for their examinations
Follow us on twitter: @MissMcBrideHist