Subject Curriculum Intent – History

 Our History curriculum is built to ignite student’s curiosity about the past in Britain and the wider world so that they become life long learners. Through developing a rich understanding about how and why the world, our country, culture and local community have developed over time, students understand how the past influences the context of their lives, the present and the future. History enables students to develop a context for their growing sense of identity and a chronological framework for their knowledge of significant events and people. The knowledge and skills that they learn through history can influence their decisions about personal choices, attitudes and values which will encourage students to aspire to be the person they desire to be and help to provide them with the determination to overcome any future barriers.

In Year 7, students conduct an in-depth study of key moments of British History – in chronological order. These are the Normans (Did the Normans bring a truck load of trouble to England after 1066?), the Middle Ages (Did rats and rebels change people’s lives completely?) and the Early Modern Period (Reformation and Renaissance: How was Europe changing in the 15th and 16th centuries?). Disciplinary knowledge is interleaved throughout this topic to ensure all year 7’s are at the same level due to the differing amounts of Geography taught in KS2.

In Year 8, students conduct a breadth study of issues of progress, protest and persecution in global history – the Industrial Revolution, Slave Trade and abolition in the UK, The British Empire and Local History (changes to Brixton in the 20th Century). Year 8 is sequenced chronologically although topics intentionally overlap and links are made between them. We have chosen to have two units dedicated to local History in order ensure that our curriculum is contextually appropriate and to ensure that students have an understanding of the impact of History on their local area. Our two local history units are The Industrial Revolution which focuses on the role of ‘Electric Avenue’ in Brixton and our final topic in Year 8 which is a study of how Brixton has changed in the 20th Century (esp. the impact of Windrush and the Brixton Riots). We have deliberately decided to teach the study of Brixton towards the end of Year 8 as students will cover the Geography of the Caribbean in the Autumn term of Year 9 Geography.

In Year 9, students conduct an in-depth study of the 20th Century. Students begin by looking at Britain at the beginning of the 20th Century before moving onto looking at what life was like during WW1, the interwar years, WW2, The Holocaust and ending the year by looking at how new ideas and technology create conflict. Key themes covered in this part of the curriculum include fascism, communism and capitalism which are essential for students understanding of the GCSE curriculum.

In Year 10 and 11, students study Weimar and Nazi Germany, the Cold War and Elizabethan England (sequenced chronologically). Our content-choices have been governed by a desire to ensure students gain the foundational powerful knowledge in order to access further study and gain an understanding of a diverse range of histories.

We have carefully selected topics to ensure that we cover a diverse range of histories whilst covering the threshold knowledge required to advance to further study. For example, we study the role of the British Empire, Women’s Suffrage and diverse local histories. Further to this, we approach the study of other topics from a diverse standpoint – regularly returning to diverse themes. The key themes that are regularly visited across the 5 year journey are empire, gender, black History, leadership, trade and the establishment of democracy. We have carefully chosen these key themes because they are key for access to further study in History and to the creation of ‘compassionate’ leadership (as per our school vision).

Throughout the curriculum, students are also explicitly taught the disciplinary knowledge required to become an articulate historian. We have identified six disciplinary skills which we have mapped on to our five year journey, will make explicit in our teaching and have included in our knowledge booklets. These are (i) similarity/difference, (ii) interpretations and evidence, (iii) change/continuity, (iv) cause and consequence and (v) importance.


For further details on the History Curriculum please click the relevant button below

5 year overview



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