Historical Association survey of secondary history provision 2019- few surprises and some disappointing statistics

Last week saw the publication of the annual survey into secondary history produced by the Historical Association. Obviously reflecting the views of members of the Association and representing less than 20% of schools, nevertheless the survey contains the most data we have available on the...
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Key ideas in primary history

When we are teaching 11 subjects it is often difficult to catch the essence of each. If we're not careful we can simply deliver the scheme of work very professionally but miss passing on the key messages about what makes history distinct. So what are...
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Remembering VE Day

In these difficult times when schools are not in session it will not be possible to commemorate the ending of the Second World War with our primary-age children in the way you might have planned. Some of you have used the lesson on VE day...
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Rotten apple or …. How should we portray Dyer’s motivation in the Amritsar massacre?

This enquiry asks students to look critically at the depiction of the massacre in the film Gandhi as a way into trying to determine the motivation of Dyer.  Students are provided with an initial set of influence cards which they have to group and classify...
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How to assess pupils’ progress in KS2 history. At last the answer that not only works but will work for you too.

Even though we will have had the National Curriculum for history ( albeit in different guises) for nearly 30 years, there hasn’t been a great deal of  attention paid to, let alone progress with, the thorny issue of assessment. Up til now the general feeling...
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Great new KS3/ GCSE lesson on Amritsar massacre looking at Gen. Dyer’s actions in the context of India and the Empire

Loading tomorrow is a great new lesson exploring the motivation of Gen. Dyer at Amritsar 1919. It starts with students analysing Attenborough's treatment in the 7 min excerpt from Gandhi followed by a 2-part thinking skills activity. Students are given one set of influence cards...
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Ending Pay per Post

As of 6 pm this evening we have disabled the pay Per Post facility which enabled non-subscribers to purchase individual items. We originally introduced this facility a few years ago as a response to teachers' call for access to just parts of the site, rather...
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KQ4 What sorts of toys did our grandparents play with and how do we know?

Optional question: What toys did our grandparents get as Christmas presents when they were your age?


  • Children are able to describe at least two differences between toys from 60 years ago and today
  • Children learn that the past is differentiated and can talk about old...
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Did you know there were over 1000 Roman sites in England and Wales?

The numerous discoveries of Roman finds, often by private metal detectors,  have revealed more than 1,000 Roman sites in England and Wales, often in places where archaeologists were not looking. While the objects include artworks, inscribed bronze tablets and military equipment, many sites have been...
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Teaching about Roman villas at KS2- some new finds in Gloucestershire. Should the housing development now go ahead – arguments for and against?

Those of you teaching about Roman villas at KS2, maybe even using the outstanding lesson on this website, Is this another Roman Villa ( KQ4 part2), will be interested to learn of new archaeological excavations in Cam, Gloucestershire, which have revealed an early conquest villa....
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New Grace Darling planner and lessons coming this month

Those of you teaching Grace Darling as a famous person at KS1, perhaps as part of a broader sea-based topic, will be delighted to discover that we have now completely revised and updated the Grace Darling planner which is available to subscribers, on request, now....
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The top 10 things you need to know about chronology at KS2, but were afraid to ask.

The top 10 things you need to know about chronology at KS2, but were afraid to ask. 1.There is more to chronology than sequencing. While sequencing is fundamentally important, you also need to think about a range of other issues too. These include: duration, interval, overlap and anachronism as well as...
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Planner for teaching early Islamic civilization at KS2

For many schools this is new topic and one to be taught with particular sensitivity in the 21st century. Try wherever possible to think of the reasons it is on the curriculum i.e. for about half of what is deemed the Christian era, Muslims marched...
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Brand new outstanding planner and fully-resourced lessons on Y1 topic TOYS

Coinciding with children returning to school after Christmas , hopefully with a few presents to their name, this brand new planner and full set of fully-resourced lessons will be launched. As already explained on the site there will be 6 enquiry questions each having its...
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What do deep dive OFSTED inspections look like for history?

What does a new deep dive 2019 inspection look like for history? Basically, there are 6 areas that the history subject leader may expect to be involved in  
  1. Exploration of medium/long term plans for history
  2. Meetings with history leader(s) 
  3. Observations/Learning Walks (often with the history leader)....
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80th anniversary of the outbreak of World War Two

On 3 September 1939, Britain and France declared war on Germany after Adolf Hitler’s invasion of Poland. It was the start of the largest and bloodiest war in history - a conflict fought around the world on air, sea and land. Its outcome continues to...
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Anniversary of the start of the Great Fire.

On this anniversary of the outbreak of the Great Fire, take a look at the outstanding lesson which explores why the fire began. It has a whole range of exciting activities and the pupils' work that arises from the lesson show just  how effective the...
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