History KS3-5

Key Stage 3 (Years 7, 8 & 9)

The new Key Stage 3 curriculum calls for History to be taught chronologically and to cover a variety of content areas. While there are some chronological overlaps in the Year 9 curriculum, it provides pupils with a clear history narrative to understand Britain’s place within the wider world.

Year 7

In Year 7 pupils are introduced to the study of History. They focus on understanding important historical vocabulary and developing their historical skills. Their skills are then applied to a study of medieval life and Tudor England.

  • Half Term 1: Historical
  • Half Term 2: The Norman Conquest
  • Half Term 3: The Crusades
  • Half Term 4: Medieval Life
  • Half Term 5: Religious Rollercoaster
  • Half Term 6: Elizabeth I
  • Independent Study Task: Castles project
  • Trips: Hampton Court 

Year 8

In Year 8 pupils continue with their chronological study of British and World history, focusing on a study of events that have influenced and shaped our present day multicultural society.

  • Half Term 1: 17th Century/English Civil War
  • Half Term 2: The Slave Trade
  • Half Term 3: The British Empire
  • Half Term 4: The Industrial Revolution
  • Half Term 5: Crime and Jack the Ripper
  • Half Term 6: Multicultural London
  • Independent Study Task: A study of a historical place of interest to them.     
  • Trips: Visit to the National Maritime Museum

Year 9

In Year 9 students focus on 20th Century History and the dramatic events that shaped our world today. The students explore different key points in the 20th Century, focussing on key skills such as source analysis, historical interpretation and evaluation.

  • Half Term 1: Women and the Franchise
  • Half Term 2: World War One
  • Half Term 3: The Interwar Years
  • Half Term 4: The Holocaust
  • Half Term 5: World War Two
  • Half Term 6: Events that have shaped the Modern World
  • Independent Study Task: Presentations on how Jewish people resisted during the Holocaust.
  • Trips: Battlefields trip to Belgium

Key Stage 4 (Years 10 & 11)

From 2016, GCSE History pupils will be studying the WJEC History (9-1) Syllabus. This course offers a range of exciting units that allow pupils to develop a broad historical knowledge and confidence in a range of skills.

Their final assessment will comprise of two exams at the end of Year 11.

They will study the following four units over two years:

  • Changes in Health and Medicine in Britain 500 to present

In this unit pupils will explore how causes and treatments of illness have changed over time. They will examine key developments in medical knowledge and how improvements have been made to public health in Britain.

  • The Elizabethan Age 1558 to 1603

In this unit pupils will explore the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, looking at life in Elizabethan England, changes to religion, plots against the Queen and foreign policy.

  • The Development of the USA  1929 – 2000

In this unit pupils will examine the development of modern America, considering the way life has changed for American people, race relations and foreign policy. They will reach a judgements about key changes and developments between 1929 and 200.

  • Germany in Transition 1919-1939

In this unit pupils will examine the impact of WWI on Germany and how problems in the 1920s contributed to Hitler’s rise to power. They will also examine what life was like in Nazi Germany and the impact of his leadership on different groups.


The key learning objectives of KS4 history include:

  • Students develop their historical knowledge and understanding & their ability to explain, analyse and evaluate key events, people and changes in each unit of study.
  • Students develop skills in researching, writing about, discussing and debating different views and interpretations of the main events and people involved in each unit.
  • Skills that are developed: Debating, argument, analysis, revaluation, recall, political, economic, cultural, social awareness, comprehension. Understanding of reliability, usefulness and interpretation of time, people, and events.
  • Students learn to investigate issues critically using a wide range of historical sources.

Key Stage 5 - A Level (Years 12 & 13)

In Year 12 students begin their study of two components on communist states in the 20th century. These units are:

  • Russia 1917-1991: from Lenin to Yeltsin

In this unit they study the development of the communist state in the USSR. Considering key themes on the control of government, economic development, control of the people and social developments. They also complete a source enquiry on the collapse of the USSR.

  • Mao’s China 1949-1976

In this unit pupils examine the rise and leadership of Chairman Mao, looking at key features of his leadership and his economic and cultural policies. The focus of the unit is on source enquiry.

In Year 13 student build upon the skills they have learnt in Year 12. In addition to the two units studied at AS Level, the students complete a 4,000 word piece of coursework and a unit of study in British History.

The final assessment for Year 13 comprises of 3 exams from the 3 units studied across the two year period, as well as a piece of course work.

  • Protest, Agitation and Parliamentary Reform 1780-1928

In this unit the students apply knowledge, skills and understanding to examine the relationship between authority and mass agitation in England, the struggle for greater representation in England, and the ways in which the interests and concerns of individuals in society could make themselves known.

  • Coursework

The purpose of this coursework is to enable students to develop skills in the analysis and evaluation of interpretations of history in a chosen question, problem or issue as part of an independently researched assignment. The focus is on understanding the nature and purpose of the work of the historian. Students will be required to form a critical view based on relevant reading on the question, problem or issue. They will also be specifically required to analyse, explain and evaluate the interpretations of three historians.