Strategic Lead of Humanities: Mr S Egan |

‘History is usually presented as a set of facts and dates of victories and defeats, or monarchs and presidents. Consigned to an unchanging past. But it’s not like that at all. History is the knitting together of rival interpretations: deliberate manipulations of the truth and sometimes alternative facts.’ Lucy Worsley 2019

The purpose of the History curriculum at Kirkburton Middle School is to give pupils a broad knowledge and understanding of significant people, events and developments in Britain and the wider world from the Roman Period through to the 20th century. Within this there will be aspects of depth and thematic study.

We aim to develop the discipline of History by developing key skills and assessing these through a range of KPIs (Key performance indicators) below. Our curriculum provides a solid foundation for those who opt to study History at GCSE and focuses on Significance, explanation of causes, developments and source work. We want our students to be able to communicate enthusiastically and knowledgably about the past and aim to develop high levels of written communication as well as the confidence to argue their points convincingly.

  • Chronological Understanding
  • Communicating using Historical/Analytical Narrative
  • Using evidence
  • Interpretation
  • Causation and Significance
  • Change and continuity

Curriculum Overview

Year 6

Autumn Term The Romans
  • Where did the Roman Empire come from?
  • How did the Roman army help to expand the Roman Empire?
  • How did Britain become part of the Roman Empire? (The three attempts)
  • Who was Boudicca and how did she rebel against the Romans?
  • What did the Romans build after they settled in Britain?
  • How did bathhouses provide leisure for Romans in Britain?
  • What was crime and punishment like in Roman times?
  • What were the religious beliefs of the Romans and who did they worship?
  • What lasting impact did the Romans leave in Britain?
Spring Term The 'Golden' Age of Islam: 622AD-1258 The Aztecs: 1300-1521
  • Why is it important to study Islam in this period?
  • How were Arabs able to spread so far, so quickly?
  • What can we learn about the Golden Age of Islam from the way they set up Baghdad?
  • How would London compare to the city of Cordoba?
  • Why were people willing to fight in Crusades?
  • Which of the early Islamic achievements have had the greatest impact on our lives today?
  • Who were the Aztecs and where/when did they live?
  • How and why was Tenochtitlan founded?
  • How did the Aztecs trade and communicate?
  • What were their beliefs, rites and Gods?
  • What was the importance of Aztec warriors?
  • What happened during the Spanish conquest?
Summer Term The Vikings: 793-1066AD
  • Where did the Vikings come from?
  • What did Vikings look like?
  • How and why did the Vikings invade Britain?
  • How did British Kings deal with Viking invaders?
  • What happened during Viking invasions and what were the warriors like?
  • How did the Vikings live and work? How important was trade to them?
  • How do Viking artefacts help us to work out what life was like?
  • Who were the Viking Gods and what did they represent?

Year 7

Autumn Term Norman Conquest - 1066 Medieval Britain: 1066-1485
  • Pre 1066 Recap
  • Who should be King?
  • Who will win the Battle of Hastings?
  • Why did William win the Battle of Hastings?
  • How did William secure power in England?
  • How did the Normans influence life in England?
  • Why is the Domesday Book significant?
  • What was life like in Norman England?
  • What happened after William died?
  • How smelly were Medieval towns and villages?
  • Who were the villeins?
  • Were the villeins treated fairly?
  • What was life like in medieval times? (Food, entertainment)
  • How healthy were medieval people? (causes, treatment & prevention of illness)
  • What were medieval institutions like? (church & hospitals)
Spring Term The Tudors and Elizabethan England: 1458-1603 Renaissance: 14th-17th Century
  • The reign of Henry VIII
  • The reign of Edward VI
  • The reign of Mary I
  • Elizabeth's problems
  • Why was the Spanish Armada a problem for Elizabeth?
  • How did Elizabeth deal with the problem of the poor?
  • Life in Elizabethan England
  • How did the church change?
  • Gunpowder Plot 1605
  • Witch Trials 1612
  • Charles I
  • Civil War
  • Cromwell
  • Charles II & Restoration
  • Great Plague 1665
  • Great Fire of London 1666
  • Glorious Revolution
  • Act of Union
Summer Term Why has Crime and Punishment Changed so Dramatically in the last 1000 years?

Crime and Punishment

  • Pre Medieval Crime and Punishment
  • Medieval 1250-1500
  • Renaissance 1500-1750
  • Industrial 1750-1900
  • Modern 1900 –present day
  • Case Study - Jack the Ripper

Prison Study

  • Tower of London
  • Alcatraz
  • Guantanamo Bay
  • Strangeways

Year 8

Autumn Term Industrial Revolution
  • How did Britain change during the industrial revolution?
  • What was life like working in the domestic system and how was this different to the factory system?
  • How did inventions help improve production?
  • What was life like in the factories?
  • How were children treated in the factories?
  • How did Huddersfield contribute to the industrial revolution?
  • How was the industrial revolution linked to slavery?
  • 10 Hour Bill
  • Why was housing so poor?
  • Who were the heroes of public health during the Industrial Revolution?
  • The Mill – Video Source Task
Spring Term Empire Slavery
  • How did Britain gain its empire?
  • How and why did Britain take control of India?
  • What was the Indian Mutiny?
  • What was the impact of empire on India and Britain?
  • How did Britain lose its empire?
  • How should we remember the British Empire?
  • Why was the Jamestown Settlement significant?
  • What was the Triangular Trade?
  • How were slaves transported across the middle passage?
  • What happened at the Slave Auctions?
  • What was life like for slaves on the plantations?
  • Why was slavery abolished?
Summer Term Civil Rights World War I
  • What was life like for black Americans after slavery?
  • Why did Brown Vs Board of education have a positive impact in the Civil Rights Movement?
  • How did the Montgomery bus boycott inspire peaceful protests to continue?
  • How did black Americans protest against social environments in America?
  • How did Martin Luther King Jr and Malcolm X differ in their methods?
  • How has life changed for Modern day black Americans? (Obama)
  • What were the long-term causes of WWI?
  • Why did WWI start? What was the trigger?
  • How were men recruited into the army?
  • What was life like in the trenches
  • What injuries did men get during WWI? How were they treated?
  • What was life like on the Home front?
  • How did lives of women change before, during and after WWI? Women's Rights
  • What happened during the war beyond the Western Front?

As pupils begin each unit they need to know how it fits into the wider whole so they can see  / learn the particular by locating it in the general. To see trends in history we want to explore recurring thematic themes and use these to map out history and provide a context for deeper learning and understanding

Power and protest Study the changing nature of power and control. How power has been challenged through history and ultimately how democracy was developed.
History as progress Develop a sense of development over time. Appreciate how and why progress was made sometimes in a short space of time whereas sometimes very little progress, even regression, was made for long periods of time.
Beliefs and attitudes How beliefs and attitudes have developed over time and influenced actions.
Health and living conditions The topic of health and sanitation is fundamental to human society but also provides a foundation for later study.
Empire, Migration and settlement Look at how Empire and colonisation have shaped Britain and the wider world from the Ancient Romans through to the decline of the British Empire

What career…?

Historians can enjoy rich, rewarding and varied careers in writing and publishing, research, teaching and consultancy, to name just a few.

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