The history curriculum aims to inspire students to become well rounded and passionate historians who think critically about the world they inhabit. To effectively interact with the modern world an understanding of student’s own history, and that of those around them is essential. In their study of history, they will consider a range of perspectives and develop the ability to make balanced arguments and well sustained judgements. They will develop an understanding of how our history forms our sense of identity and place in the world, and through studying a range of periods and peoples will become more empathetic and open minded. Through a knowledge rich curriculum students will gain an in depth understanding of a range of events and issues throughout history and build their historical literacy and conceptual understanding. Students will learn to ask thoughtful questions and develop independent, analytical thinking and a passion for learning, ensuring they complete their history education as thoughtful, academics. Throughout KS3 there are many opportunities to build a foundation of knowledge to help embed knowledge and prepare them for their continued study at GCSE. 

History is not intended to simply be “one thing after another”, a study of “great men”, nor a collection of isolated facts. Our aim is for students to use their knowledge to develop the skills of a historian: to evaluate primary evidence; identify and analyse interpretations; construct arguments, both written and verbal, to make substantiated judgements; and to work independently. These skills, together with specialist first and second-order historical vocabulary and concepts are incorporated throughout the curriculum. They are also sequenced so that students have the opportunity to revisit and build on their skills to facilitate progress. Across the Key Stage 3 topics, history colleagues are encouraged to use their knowledge and professional judgement to adapt lessons for students of all aptitudes, the vast majority of whom are taught in mixed ability groups with some banding based on English performance in Years 7 and 8. We emphasise the shared school value of working hard and doing your best and help students become at ease with doubt – there are very few absolutes in history. 

Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3, pupils extend and deepen their chronologically secure knowledge and understanding of British, local and world history, so that it provides a well-informed context for wider learning. Pupils identify significant events, make connections, draw contrasts, and analyse trends within periods and over long arcs of time. They use historical terms and concepts in increasingly sophisticated ways. They pursue historically valid enquiries including some they have framed themselves, and create relevant, structured and evidentially supported accounts in response. They understand how different types of historical sources are used rigorously to make historical claims and discern how and why contrasting arguments and interpretations of the past have been constructed. 

In planning to ensure the progression described above through teaching the British, local and world history outlined below, teachers combine overview and depth studies to help pupils understand both the long arc of development and the complexity of specific aspects of the content. 

Key Stage 4 and 5  

Year 10 

Britain, Health and the People:  

This thematic study enables students to gain an understanding of how medicine and public health developed in Britain over a long period of time. It considers the causes, scale, nature and consequences of short and long term developments and their impact on British Society. 

Germany, 1890-1945: Democracy and Dictatorship 

This period study focuses on the development of Germany during a turbulent half century of change. Students will study the political, economic, social and cultural aspects of these two developments and how these have influenced change.  

Year 11 

Conflict and Tension 1918-1939 :   

This topic focuses on the causes of the Second World War and seeks to show how and why conflict occurred and why it proved difficult to resolve the issues which caused it. This study also considers the role of key individuals and groups in shaping change, as well as how they were affected by and influenced international relations. Elizabethan England, c1568-1603: This topic allows students to study in depth a specified period, the last 35 years of Elizabeth I's reign. The study will focus on major events of Elizabeth I’s reign considered from economic, religious, political, social and cultural standpoints, and arising contemporary and historical controversies. 

Sixth Form 

 British period study: The Early Stuarts: 1603-46  

  • written exam: 1 hour 30 minutes. Two questions (one compulsory)  

  • 25% of A-level  

Non-British period study: Democracy and Dictatorships in Germany 1918-63  

  • written exam: 1 hour 15 minutes. Two questions  

  • 15% of A-level  

Thematic study: Tudor Rebellions  

  • written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes. Three questions (one compulsory)  

  • 40% of A-level  

Historical Investigation - A personal study based on a topic of student's choice.  

  • 3,000 – 3,500 words  

  • 20% of A-level  

The study of History at Central Academy ensures that students have the transferable skills needed for the demands of further and higher education, as well as the demands of the workplace. Students are regularly challenged to develop their cognitive, interpersonal and intrapersonal skills in lessons throughout their time at Central Academy. We work to ensure that students are competent in basic skills, literacy and numeracy by integrating numeracy and literacy tasks into our lessons. Literacy has also become more prevalent on the GCSE history exams, with marks awarded for accuracy of spelling, punctuation and grammar so we must ensure our pupils are prepared for this. We aspire for all students to leave the Academy with a sound knowledge and understanding of the history of Britain and the wider world and skills which will transfer into their chosen field of employment or study.

Curriculum Map


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