The History Department is comprised of four teachers and dedicated teaching areas. The department has its own mini-library, Online Learning Environment, drama chest and an array of specialist teaching and learning resources.
The department also offers a wide range of extra curricular opportunities:
During their first three years at Skinners’ all boys will complete Key Stage 3 of the National Curriculum in History. Following an introductory topic on the Norman Conquest at the start of Year Seven, they follow a thematic approach with an emphasis on chronology, interpretation and the critical use of evidence. Each theme is designed to encourage consideration of the ‘big picture’ in addition to the study of topics in depth, and focus on historical concepts such as cause and consequence, continuity and change, the role of the individual and turning points. The themes are as follows:
1. The Church and the monarchy: the nature of the Medieval Church, the murder of Thomas Becket, ‘Bad’ King John?, the Reformation and finally,‘Bloody’ Mary.
2. Crime and punishment through time
Punishment for entertainment: Roman Gladiators
Crime, punishment and religion: trial by ordeal
Stereotyping and superstition: witchcraft
Framings and unjust punishments: the Gunpowder Plot and the Fire of London
Unsolved crimes and the link between crime and poverty: Jack the Ripper
The death penalty debate: Modern crime and punishment systems
This is a comparative research-based unit examining the Roman, Spanish and British empires. Pupils will examine features such as
-How empires are built and maintained
-The economic incentives and impact of empires- both positive and negative
-Case studies on particular areas of each empire such as conquest of the Incas, the Scramble for Africa and Roman Gaul
4. Monarchs under threat
-From below: The Peasants’ Revolt
-From without: The Spanish Armada
-From within: The English Civil War
-From themselves: The modern British monarchy
5. The history of health and medicine
-Medieval Era: The Black Death, beliefs in astrology and the humours, treatments and new ideas from the East
-Tudor and Renaissance Era: Tudors lifestyles and diet, the price of beauty
-Victorian Era: Water and Sewage problems, impact of industrialisation, Factories, pioneers (Bazalgette, Jenner etc.)
-Modern Medicine: establishment of the Health service, modern techniques.
6. Slavery and civil rights:
-African slave trade (capture, the Middle Passage, auction)
-The triangular trade route and nature of plantation agriculture
-Modern day slavery
-Slave rebellion: Revolts, the Underground railroad, arts and literature
-Freedom fighters (Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X etc.)
-The women’s suffrage movement
7. The world at war
This unit comprises a depth study of the causes, courses and consequences of World War One and World War Two.
Centred on the holocaust, pupils are given the opportunity to conduct their own project, an end of Key Stage thesis, developing their own reflections and producing a range of materials expressing their ideas about the repetition of history and its trends.
We shall seek to build on the historical skills already introduced at Key Stages 1 and 2 The boys will examine a wide variety of historical sources and experience a variety of enquiry-based and active learning activities. The boys will be encouraged to develop their own points of view and to clearly and concisely debate, analyse and evaluate in their written and oral work. The area around Tunbridge Wells contains many buildings and sites of historical interest and importance, and a number of visits will be arranged as an integral part of the course.
GCSE OCR Specification B 1937 : HISTORY B (MODERN WORLD)
G.C.S.E. history at Skinners’ is focussed on conflict in the modern world and provides a balance between economic, social and political history. The actions and perceptions of individuals are examined in detail, as are key events. The historical skills and concepts introduced at Key Stage Three are built upon further and lay the foundations for A level study. The G.C.S.E. specification is divided into four areas:
· INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS: 1919-39
· DEPTH STUDY: Germany 1918-45
· BRITAIN, 1890-1918
· COURSEWORK – (25%): Mussolini
A-Level History – OCR A
Our A-level curriculum is centred on the development of the Modern World and its political, social and military systems.
The A Level History course requires students to study four Units. The first two, set at Advanced Subsidiary Level, will be taught in Year 12 and the remaining two units, now designated A2, will occupy Year 13. To obtain a full A Level all four units must be taken but it is possible to obtain an AS qualification by taking the first two Units only.
Unit F961 (AS) Liberals and Conservatives 1846-95. (British history essay paper)
Unit F964 (AS) The Origins of the American Civil War. (World history enquiries paper)
Unit F965 (A2) Historical interpretations and Investigations (Coursework)
Unit F966 (A2) American Civil Rights 1865-1992 (World history thematic paper)
For more information on all curriculum aspects of history at Skinners’ please go to the History Online Learning Environment
History Club is open to students in Years 7 and 8. Recent activities have included re-living the Blitz, creating Roman army shields and researching the mysteries of the Nazcan Plains. 1:00pm on Thursdays in K8
History Surgery is open to GCSE and A level students and is an opportunity to take advantage of wider reading and extension activities, seek advice and catch up on work missed. Mondays and Tuesdays at lunchtimes in K8
Military History Club is open to all year groups and is run by Mr. Walsh in K5 on Mondays.
Sixth Form Historians are also regular attendees at the Oxford Society dinners and participate in academic competitions such as the Julia Wood essay prize.
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