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There is a strong emphasis on independent learning and the development of analytical skills in the History teaching at TWGGS; History is not all about remembering lists of dates. The department uses a wide range of activities to engage pupils in an investigation of past events. We challenge pupils to investigate cause and consequence and to question the impact of people in the past and the results of their actions both in the short and long term. Lessons are varied; from role-play to the analysis of primary evidence, pupils are encouraged to develop their own viewpoints about the past and the way in which it has influenced our modern lives. At Key Stage 3 pupils have three lessons per fortnight.

Year 7: Medieval History to the emergence of the Tudor dynasty
This is a very exciting start to History at secondary school, full of colourful characters and events. It is also a period of great change due to the Norman invasion, the introduction of the feudal system and the coming of the Tudor dynasty. There are also major conflicts to be seen in the challenges presented to the power of the monarchy by the church, the nobility and the peasants. It is not too much of an exaggeration to see the period as one of death and revolt! In Year 7, lessons are enriched by a variety of activities outside the classroom including a ‘mediaeval’ experience.

TOPIC A: The study of an aspect or theme in British history before 1066; Rulers of Britain- migrations and invasions Romans to Normans
  • Pre 1066 Britain: an overview of Britain from the fall of Rome to the eleventh century, key concepts of chronology and change, including a study of Saxon and Viking rulers.
TOPIC B: The development of Church, state and society in Mediaeval Britain 1066-1509
  • Norman Conquest, How the Normans changed England, feudalism and the development of castles
  • The Nature of Kingship and the importance of the Church
  • Case study of Thomas Becket and Henry II
  • Case study of King John and Magna Carta
  • Medieval life, including a Mediaeval Experience and Mediaeval Life Enquiry Project
  • The rise of the Tudors

Year 8: The Tudors to the Victorians

This year initially follows the fortunes of the Tudors and Stuarts. In the early part of Year 8 learning is enriched and stimulated by a visit to Hampton Court Palace. The year includes the key factors in the development of Britain into a modern nation including the rise of parliament and the end of the power of monarchy. It then moves on to address the consequences of trade and industry, including the slave trade and the effects of industrialisation.

TOPIC C: The development of Church, state and society in Britain 1509-1745

  • Tudor monarchy, Hampton Court visit and enquiry
  • Stuart kingship
  • The English Civil War
  • The trial and execution of Charles I
  • Cromwell: was he a hero or a villain?
  • The Restoration, the Glorious Revolution and the establishment of the United Kingdom
TOPIC D: A local history study
  • Cholera in Tonbridge
TOPIC E: Ideas, political power, industry and empire: Britain, 1745-1901 The British Empire, the transatlantic slave trade, the lives of slaves and abolition
  • The Industrial Revolution and the Victorian age

Year 9: The World from 1901 to the Present Day

The clash between democracy and dictatorship was a key aspect of the last century and in this year pupils study the global conflicts that have shaped the modern world. In Year 9, pupils also investigate issues that still challenge the world we live in today, including the rise of the United States.

TOPIC F: Challenges for Britain, Europe and the Wider World (1901 to the present day)
  • Causes of the First World War
  • World War One, with a focus on the Western Front, Haig
  • The Paris peace treaties
  • The women’s suffrage movement
  • Dictatorship vs democracy
  • The Great Depression and the rise of Hitler
  • The causes of the Second World War
  • World War II and its effects on Britain and the world, including the Holocaust (a cross-curricular topic with PSHCE)
  • Home Front Project
  • The post-war world
TOPIC G: A significant society or issue in world history and its interconnections with other world developments
  • The USA in the 20th Century – an enquiry task

Also see related pages: Curriculum and Prospectus