The study of History is more than just listing dates and reciting the names of long forgotten kings. History is as much about the present and future as it is about the past.

“The more you know about the past, the better prepared you are for the future.”  Theodore Roosevelt

Linking current world events and politics underpins much of the History teaching and pupils are encouraged not to view historic events as isolated incidents, but as part of a wider worldview where one person’s actions can change the course of history. Therefore debate and analysis are encouraged in the History classroom with the aim of nurturing inquiring minds and pupils who are curious about the world around them.

By studying a range of time periods and a broad spectrum of topics, History enables pupils to better understand the world in which they live, and become more open minded and tolerant towards other cultures and perspectives. It also helps them to better understand themselves. Finding personal connections with the past and stories which resonate with pupils helps history to become a less remote place from which they may have felt totally disconnected.

“If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree.”  Michael Crichton

My Learning at The Laurels

History lessons are an opportunity to actively engage with the past. Through role-plays, primary source analysis and watching historic footage, History is brought to life in a meaningful and exciting way.

You will develop both your written and verbal communication through a variety of tasks and by working independently, in pairs and in groups. Debate is strongly encouraged and you will have many opportunities to give presentations to the whole class and work on extended projects.

There are several co-curricular activities offered by the History Department, including the History Club and the History Action Group, which takes the lead in organizing events in school to commemorate historical events.

Course Content

Years 7 to 9

Across KS3 pupils study a broad range of time periods covering Medieval, Early Modern and Modern History encompassing British, European and World History. There is a focus on enquiry based learning whereby pupils investigate the past by answering challenging questions and closely examining source materials.

Pupils study exciting moments and pivotal turning points in History and examine key concepts including ‘change and continuity’, ‘cause and consequence’ and ‘significance’. Pupils are encouraged to develop empathy as they engage with stories from the past and to challenge the evidence which they examine, rather than simply accepting sources as fact.

This keen focus on developing pupils’ analytical skills is crucial in their progression throughout KS3 History and towards KS4. These transferable skills are also vital as they mature and increasingly engage with the world around them by watching the news and reading newspapers. Making links with current events and engaging in debate is a central part of the History classroom environment.

Years 10 and 11

The following AQA options are studied at The Laurels:

Paper 1: Understanding the modern world

Section A: Period Studies
Germany, 1890–1945: Democracy and dictatorship

Section B: Wider World Depth Studie
Conflict and tension, 1918–1939

Paper 2: Shaping the Nation

Section A: Thematic Study
Britain: Health and the people: c1000 to the present day

Section B: British Depth Studies (with the historic environment)
Norman England, c1066–c1100

This subject content for GCSE History ensures that the scope of study includes history:

from three eras:
* Medieval (500–1500)
* Early Modern (1450–1750)
* Modern (1700–present day)

on three timescales:
* short (depth study)
* medium (period study)
* long (thematic study)

on three geographical contexts:
* a locality (the historic environment)
* British
* European and/or wider world settings.

Pupils are required to study:

One Thematic Study
This enables pupils to understand change and continuity across a long sweep of history. The study must cover all three specified eras (Medieval / Early Modern / Modern).

One Period Study
This allows pupils to focus on a substantial and coherent medium time span of at least 50 years. The study will require pupils to understand an unfolding narrative of substantial developments and issues.

Two Depth Studies
One British and one European/wider world. Depth studies enable pupils to focus on a substantial and coherent short time span. The studies enable pupils to gain understanding of the complexities of a society or historical situation and the interplay of different aspects within it.

A Study of the Historic Environment
The study of the historic environment should focus on a particular site in its historical context and enable pupils to study the relationship between a place and historical events and developments.

GCSE Examination Board

AQA History GCSE

Related Activities

Model United Nations
History Action Group
History Club – KS3
History Club – KS4
History Skills Lab – KS4
Holocaust Memorial Day Commemorations
Armistice Day Commemorations
Black History Month