History Resource Cupboard – lessons and resources for schools

enquiry

Please don’t ask year 7 to answer GCSE exam questions

Recently I arranged for Michael Riley to come and work with my initial teacher trainees and their mentors at Sussex University. What a privilege. After all, it was Michael alongside Jamie Byrom who  inspired me to teach history the way that I have been for the last 18 years. A[…]

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Using enquiry to succeed at 9-1 GCSE history

Reading

I think I might be out of fashion.  Come to think of it, on a sartorial level I have never been in fashion. But that is a digression. You see I have always been an advocate of enquiry based history. I gardened in Michael Riley’s enquiry garden way back in[…]

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The problem with exam questions and teaching to the test

Exam desks

Over the last year I have been working hard creating resources for the new GCSEs. This has led me to look really carefully at many things: different topics, the details of the content, and the assessment approaches of the new GCSEs on offer. These exam questions can be predictable. Fact.[…]

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How to run a successful revision information evening

Running a successful revision information evening. When we get to the weeks leading up to Easter revision season is upon us. In schools all over the land colleagues find themselves somewhere on the spectrum between being inundated with eager students to dragging them kicking and screaming to revision classes. There[…]

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Collaborative planning to improve teaching

Meeting

Data, spreadsheets, tracking, CAT scores, Progress 8, levels of progress, intervention strategies, Pupil Premium….ever feel like your department time is eaten up with things a million miles away from the love of History and the love of teaching it to students that first brought you in to the job? We[…]

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Creating curiosity: Ten stimulating starts to enquiries

If we are to create outstanding learning and learners, we need to engage our pupils to become curious in the classroom.  One way to help engage learners and create curiosity is ensure that all enquiries that start in an intriguing and stimulating way. This isn’t a new and revelationary idea. Good teachers[…]

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Five top activities with pictures in the history classroom

Photographs

We love to use images in our lessons – always have done. Ever since we could photocopy them from books, print them onto sheets of paper and put them in front of kids we have used them. There are hundreds of possibilities for using pictures. Here are our five top picture activities[…]

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20 Engaging End Products for the History Classroom

Are you bored of setting work that ends up in an extended piece of writing? An essay? An ‘important assessment’? An exam answer? When you tell your class this do they groan and look deflated? Those kids who can’t be bothered don’t bother. You’re marking load increases as your motivation to[…]

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Teaching Historical Interpretations at GCSE

Teaching Historical Interpretations at GCSE. I am really, really pleased that Historical Interpretations has been placed at the heart of the 2016 GCSEs. After all, as Neil Thompson and Christine Counsell have stated, interpretations has always been the jewel in the crown of the Key Stage 3 concepts. Previously we[…]

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Teaching Historical Interpretations

Teaching historical Interpretations. If you want success at GCSE and beyond you need to think about how you teach what you teach and why you teach what you teach! Fact. This means developing a great Key Stage 3 curriculum and building on this into Key Stage 4. Recently Ofsted have[…]

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The Board Race Game to enliven GCSE judgement questions

The best professional development I have ever had is to work alongside a creative colleague. Just by sitting down for 20 minutes and discussing your lessons for the next day can inspire ideas, or it can reveal fab teaching strategies that you never thought of. In my career I have[…]

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Curriculum planning and the issue of marking

Neil Bates and I have been working together from afar for many years. We have taught in different schools but have always met up to swap resources.  However, we were lucky enough to have been working together in the same school.  Poor Neil had me as his Head of Hums! We have[…]

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What makes a great (history) teacher?

What makes a great (history) teacher? I have been pondering this question lately.  By lately I mean for the last 19 years  or so… and probably will continue to ponder for the next 20 to 30 years, God willing! Lots of people seem to be experts on this subject, clever[…]

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New National Curriculum, new series of books

Happy New Year to you all! Things have been quieter on the historyresourcecupboard in the Autumn term. This is because we have been working hard on a new series of books for the 2014 National Curriculum. The we being, me – Richard McFahn, Neil Bates and Alec Fisher. We have[…]

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The irony of it

About a week ago I was lucky enough to spend four days in Tbilisi Georgia, as a part of an amazing Euroclio project: Innovating History Teaching in the Black Sea region. It was an incredible experience and a brilliant project, aimed at getting history educators from across the region to[…]

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What kind of history do you want?

I have just been lucky enough to have a look at a copy of Diana Laffin’s latest A level History book British Society 1945.  Its part of the Enquiring History series for A level.Quickly thumbing through it I am struck by the clever teaching techniques and the interesting content. It[…]

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