History Resource Cupboard – lessons and resources for schools

GCSE

www.historyhomework.com is live

history homework

  www.historyhomework.com is live and ready for you to access. You can use it to help your students revise all of the content and many of the skills required for the most popular Edexcel 9-1 GCSE courses. AQA will be launching in September. To find out which topics are covered[…]

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Edexcel 9-1 GCSE history exam question bookmarks

Bookmarks

 Bookmarks. By the end of your GCSE course it is helpful that your students know exactly what is required of them when it comes to answering different question types. As you may know, teaching students just to pass the test is not why we entered the teaching profession. We want[…]

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Using knowledge to make meaning

Night of the Long Knives

The debate whimpers on. Knowledge and direct instruction against progress teaching ideas. This debate has been going on since the arguments over the birth of GCSE and before. Historical knowledge is crucially important – lets not forget it.  But so is the ability to use this knowledge well. We have[…]

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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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Strategies to improve grades in GCSE source evaluation

Labour isn't Working

After marking our mock exams a few years ago something struck me. Our students were often failing to get high marks on questions about source evaluation (this was the source paper for OCR Modern World). After closer analysis of examiners reports, mark-schemes and student responses, I realised that we needed some[…]

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Join our new membership service

Over the last term we have been working very hard to support you by improving the way our site works. Lots of people have contacted us to ask if we offer a subscription or membership approach. We have listened and the answer is now, ‘yes we do’.

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How will interpretations be assessed at GCSE in 2018?

How will interpretations be assessed at GCSE in 2018? Teaching historical interpretations at GCSE in 2016 will be more important than before. There is no getting away from this. As we stated in our last post, this has got be a good thing. After we really should be teaching students[…]

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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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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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New Year’s Resolutions for the history teacher

New Term here we come. Its been a great summer, much of which I have spent working on resources for 2016 GCSEs (more of which in another blog) I go back this week to a new role – Head of Humanities.  Its been a long time since I have had[…]

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Games for the history classroom: Stepping stones

As you know, we love to use games for the history classroom. Not only are games engaging and fun, they also help cement learning and make knowledge stick. This idea is simple yet highly effective. The unstoppable Neil Bates uses it when doing class revision for GCSE history. It is called[…]

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Double continuums to sharpen student’s historical thinking

We would recommend that you sometimes use double continuums to sharpen your student’s historical thinking. This neat idea is really simple. We all want to make our students think more. And I have found over the years that many don’t actually like to think. So this neat idea has helped[…]

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Creating overviews at GCSE

I have been recently working on an entire Edexcel 2016 GCSE Crime and Punishment Through Time course. The course starts off with a tried and tested overview. Something that Alec Fisher and me perfected when we worked together for 10 years.  We believed, and still do, that if you start[…]

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GCSE exam technique placemats

One thing we know works in teaching students to do well in GCSE history exams, is preparing them to write well. Sounds so simple yet we often automatically think our students have this skill because they have arrived in year 10. Unfortunately, this assumption is often wrong!! So how do[…]

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Future 2016 GCSE History exam specifications : what is on offer? Video Blog

Future 2016 GCSE History exam specifications : what is on offer? For more information about the proposed changes to the 2016 history GCSE examination specifications read our blog pages on AQA and OCR/ A, or Edexcel and OCR/B. If you want to know how the content proposed in the exam specifications varies from board to[…]

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Review of AQA and OCR/A proposed new History GCSE specifications for 2016

Having spent time last week looking at the proposed GCSE specifications and assessment materials for OCR/SHP and Edexcel, here I repeat the exercise for the AQA and OCR /A courses. Whilst reading the materials and quaffing tea,  I was attempting to  look at the proposals through a number of lenses: how[…]

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