At SMA, we aim to make the study of History engaging and challenging for all our pupils. We hope to inspire a quest for knowledge, a love of learning, to know the history of the famous and great people of the past but to also see that history is all around us and that we are creating our own history. We are surrounded by very important historical sites including Blackheath and Greenwich and aim to make history relevant and reflective of our local community through our work on diversifying the curriculum.
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 follow the National Curriculum and study a wide range of topics that have helped shape the country and world that we live in.
At Key Stage 4 we follow the Eduqas Exam Syllabus and have chosen to study topics in the Elizabethan Age, Germany in transition, the USA in the 20th century and developments in medicine over the last 1,500 years. Over the last few years our pupils have achieved results that are well above the national average.
Pupils have at least three lessons per week and are also in mixed ability groups. Homework is set weekly for all classes, but we also make use of Google Classroom for this; there is continual assessment and monitoring of progress across the academic year with intervention offered to those who need it.
We follow the WJEC (Eduqas) Specification for GCSE History: in Year 10 pupils study units on Germany in transition 1919 – 1939 and The Elizabethan Age. In Year 11, pupils cover a further two topics; an in-depth study of the USA in the Twentieth Century and the development of Medicine over time which is a breadth study of change over time and includes a case study on a chosen theme set by the exam board.
At the end of Year 11 the pupils will have an extended period of revision to fully prepare them for the final GCSE exams. All pupils will sit two exams that are 2 hours long; in one exam, pupils answer questions on Germany and Elizabeth with both papers one hour each. In the second exam, pupils spend 45 minutes on the USA and one hour 15 minutes on the Medicine unit.
Exam Information Link
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.