Subject Leader – History

Mrs C Sampson – csampson@ndonline.org

Aims

The History Department at Notre Dame aims to develop students’ interest in and enjoyment of studying the past whilst acquiring transferable skills, habits of mind and concepts essential to the 21st century citizen.  History prepares young people for the future, equipping them with the knowledge and skills prized in adult life, enhancing their employability and ability to participate in our democratic society to the full.

The study of History:

  • encourages mutual understanding and tolerance of our ethnic and cultural diversity
  • helps students become confident and questioning individuals
  • develops critical reasoning and analytical skills including the capacity for solving problems and thinking creatively
  • promotes intellectual rigour and independence including the ability to carry out research using ICT and historical sources
  • develops the ability to construct an argument by selecting and ordering relevant evidence and communicating findings in a structured, clear and persuasive manner both orally and in writing
  • promotes additional communication skills such as negotiating, questioning and summarising
  • encourages self-motivation and self-reliance with the ability to work independently
  • develops thinking skills
  • assists students in reaching their full potential

 

Curriculum

Key Stage 3

Year 7, Theme: Changing Lives

  • Why is it so difficult to find out about Medieval Lives?  An introduction to medieval Britain, including a case study on the Black Death.
  • What can paintings tell us about changing lives between 1500 and 1750?  A study of the social, religious and political changes of Britain through the portraits of the period.
  • How did Britain become modern?  A study of life in Britain from the Industrial Revolution to the Titanic that includes crime, health and women.
  • How has Plymouth been affected by war?  A study of WW1 and WW2 and their impact on Plymouth.

Year 8, Theme: Rules and Ruled

  • Was the Norman Conquest just a ‘truckload of trouble?’ A study of the Norman Conquest and its impact on England.
  • Why did Richard Whiting die terribly? A study of the causes and consequences of the Reformation.
  • What lay behind Britain’s transatlantic slave trade? A study of the causes and consequences of the slave trade.
  • How has the Holocaust been remembered?  A study of the causes, events and significance of the Holocaust.

KS3 Homework

For each of the units in Key Stage 3, students will be set an Independent Homework Task related to the unit they are studying.  This task is designed to encourage our students to become independent and active learners.  The homework will be set towards the start of each unit and will be due at the end.  As there is always a choice of task, they allow students to deepen their understanding in an area of the unit they are particularly interested in.  It also helps students develop time management skills as they are encouraged to spend 30 minutes a week on the task; rather than complete it in one go.  On the due date, students participate in a ‘show and assess’ lesson where they get a chance to show their work to the other students in the class.  These are popular lessons where students enjoy ‘wowin’ use with their research and creativity.

 

Key Stage 4

 Year 9

Students start working towards the Edexcel Specification B: Schools History Project GCSE studying:

  • Medicine In Britain, c1250-present
  • Anglo-Saxon and Norman England, c1060-88

 Year 10

Students continue working towards the Edexcel Specification B: Schools History Project GCSE covering units in:

  • The American West, c1835-1895
  • Medicine on The British Sector of the Western Front, 1914-18

Year 11

Students complete the Edexcel Specification B: Schools History Project GCSE covering units in:

  • The USA, 1954-75 Conflict at home (Civil Rights) and abroad (The Vietnam War).

KS4 Homework

All homework at GCSE is set through Google classroom, to which students receive an invite at the start of the course.  Students should expect homework on a weekly basis.  Google classroom also includes all of the key documents a student needs, such as knowledge organisers and personalised learning checklists as well as links to a wealth of revision material.

 

Key Stage 5

We offer the Edexcel History A level course.

Year 12

A Level:

  • Unit 1: German and West Germany, 1918-89
  • Spain, 1930-78: Republicanism, Francoism and the re-establishment of democracy.

Year 13

A Level:

  • Protest, agitation and parliamentary reform in Britain, 1780-1928.
  • An independent Study based on Civil Rights in the USA, 1863-1980.

KS5 Homework

All homework at A Level is set through Google classroom, to which students receive an invite at the start of the course.  Students should expect to complete 1 hour of homework for every taught hour.  Google classroom also includes all of the key documents a student needs, such as knowledge organisers and personalised learning checklists as well as links to a wealth of revision material.

 

Assessment

Key Stage 3

Students are assessed in a variety of ways against the four assessment objectives:

A01: Knowledge and understanding

A02: Concepts of History (cause, consequence, change, continuity, significance)

A03: Evaluating primary evidence.

A04: Evaluating interpretations of History.

 

Key Stage 4

Students will be assessed internally through a mix of tests based on Knowledge Organisers and exam practice questions.

The final exams will consist of 3 papers:

Paper 1:

  • Medicine In Britain, c1250-present
  • Medicine on The British Sector of the Western Front, 1914-18

Paper 2:

  • Anglo-Saxon and Norman England, c1060-88
  • The American West, c1835-1895

Paper 3:

  • The USA, 1954-75 Conflict at home (Civil Rights) and abroad (The Vietnam War).

Key Stage 5

Students are internally assessed through regular knowledge organiser tests, practice source and interpretation questions and essay writing.

The final exams will consist of 3 exam papers (one on each of the taught units above) and 1 independent study of 3,000-4,000 words.