At SMA, we want to make the learning of History as engaging and challenging as possible for all our pupils. We want to inspire a quest for knowledge and a love of learning not just about the history of the famous and great people of the past but to see that history is all around us and that we ourselves are creating our own history. We are surrounded by very important historical sites including Blackheath and Greenwich.
The History Department has well qualified and experienced teachers who have a passion for the subject and we want to pass this onto the pupils. We aim to make pupils understand the significance and relevance of what they are studying and we encourage them to become critical thinkers of the world they live in. At Key Stage 3 pupils cover a wide range of topics that have helped shape the country and world that we live in and in Key Stage 4 we study topics in more depth to develop deeper learning and thinking in pupils making it possible for them to achieve the best results.
Each classroom has an interactive whiteboard and we use a variety of delivery methods for lessons. Pupils are taught by ability bands in Years 7 and 8, once a week. At GCSE, pupils have three lessons a week and Year 9 is used to develop deeper learning and skills needed to succeed in the final exams. Homework is set weekly for all classes and there is continual assessment and monitory of progress across the academic year.
Key Stage 3
In Year 7, pupils will study a series of overviews on the following topics; What is History?, Migration to Britain from the Celt to the Normans, Norman control of England and the power of medieval monarchs and religious conflict under the Tudor and Stuart monarchs.
In Year 8, pupils will look at Black Peoples of the Americas, the development of London, how Britain changed between 1750 and 1900 and the French Revolution. Most units last 6 weeks and homework will extend and deepen pupils’ knowledge of local and national history.
Key Stage 4
In Year 9, pupils spend the first part of the course developing knowledge and skills necessary to succeed at GCSE through a study of the Twentieth Century; as part of the course links are made with the topics that students will study for the exam.
We follow the WJEC (Eduqas) Specification for GCSE History and in the spring term pupils begin the study of the GCSE with the unit on Germany in transition 1919 – 1939.
In Year 10, pupils cover a further two topics; The Development of Medicine over time which is a breadth study and includes a case study on the impact of the plague on the village of Eyam. This is followed by the study of the USA in the Twentieth Century.
In Year 11, pupils will study the reign of Queen Elizabeth in depth; this allows for a period of time preparing for the final GCSE exams. The exams are 2 hours long; in one exam, pupils answer questions on Germany and Queen Elizabeth and the other exam covers Medicine and the USA units.
Exam Information Link
www.schoolhistory.co.uk – log in needed to access resources
We want our pupils to understand that learning is not confined to the classroom and that there are endless possibilities to develop knowledge and skills elsewhere. We aim to take all pupils on a trip to a local historical site as well as museums that are linked to the topics we study at school. Even SMA has a history and we would encourage students to explore the history of their local area. We want pupils to be active citizens in their communities, to read newspapers and watch documentaries with a critical mind and to inform themselves of why the world we live in today is how it is, often shaped by events in the recent past. History is alive and is transforming our world all the time and pupils should be encouraged to explore with their families.