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Studying History at Bloxham School

History in the Lower School & Third Form

The Lower School broadly follows the Key Stage Three/ Common Entrance syllabus; students study the Middle Ages in the First Form starting with the disputed succession of 1066, and working through to the usurpation of the throne by Henry Tudor in 1485. Within the course students study both political and social history, including the Black Death and the Peasants’ Revolt. Throughout the year students have the opportunity to visit a range of local sites of historical interest in order to enhance their learning, including the nearby medieval Church of St Peter ad Vincula, and Kenilworth Castle.

In the Second Form we focus on English history in the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, and look at how European developments such as the Reformation impacted upon England. The Second Form course also includes a sizeable local history element, with a key focus being the extent to which the English Civil War impacted upon the local community. As part of this unit of work we visit the nearby Edgehill Battlefield and Broughton Castle, which itself was attacked by Charles’ Royalist forces in 1642.

The Third Form course allows students to view key social and political developments in 19th and 20th century British History, within a more global context. We begin by exploring the impact of industrialisation on 19th century Britain, before moving on to study the First World War. A particular focus here is the impact the war had on Britain as a whole, and how this brought about a profound period of social change within post-war Britain. Students also study the rise of political extremism within Europe in the early to mid 20th century, and give thought to why political extremism has, thus far struggled to take hold within Britain. Students finish the year by carrying out a research project of their own choice on the Second World War.

Historical skills

We recognise that the teaching of history is far more than simply the transmission of knowledge, and thus the teaching of historical skills forms a fundamental part of the curriculum in the First, Second and Third Forms. We encourage students to use a range of historical sources and to think as historians and critical thinkers, able to apply their understanding of issues relating to source utility and provenance to their everyday lives.

History at GCSE

At GCSE, students follow the EDEXCEL specification, with units in Crime and Punishment, Weimar and Nazi Germany, The American West c1835-1895 and Anglo Saxon- Norman England. Following recent governmental changes, there is no coursework or Controlled Assessment at GCSE.

History at A Level

At A Level, students follow the OCR specification which includes four components. Students will sit examinations in three units: Rebellion and Disorder in Tudor England, The French Revolution and the Rule of Napoleon, and the Making of Georgian England. In addition to this, students will complete a coursework piece focusing on a topic of their own choice.

Academic Enrichment

The department runs a range of extracurricular visits, both during term time and at weekends/ holidays aimed at complementing the topics students are studying in class and providing additional academic enrichment. These range from overseas trips such as the recent Battlefields trip, A Level study tours and museum visits, to the hosting of visiting speakers and participation in projects such as the Historical Association’s ‘Great Debate’.