Strategic Lead of Humanities: Mrs L Bloomfield |

‘History is usually presented as a set of facts and dates of victories and defeats, or monarchs and presidents. Consigned to an unchanging past. But it’s not like that at all. History is the knitting together of rival interpretations: deliberate manipulations of the truth and sometimes alternative facts.’ Lucy Worsley 2019

The purpose of the History curriculum at Kirkburton Middle School is to give pupils a broad knowledge and understanding of significant people, events and developments in Britain and the wider world from the Roman Period through to the 20th century. Within this there will be aspects of depth and thematic study.

We aim to develop the discipline of History by developing key skills and assessing these through a range of KPIs (Key performance indicators) below. Our curriculum provides a solid foundation for those who opt to study History at GCSE and focuses on Significance, explanation of causes, developments and source work. We want our students to be able to communicate enthusiastically and knowledgably about the past and aim to develop high levels of written communication as well as the confidence to argue their points convincingly.

  • Chronological Understanding
  • Communicating using Historical/Analytical Narrative
  • Using evidence
  • Interpretation
  • Causation and Significance
  • Change and continuity

Curriculum Overview

The History Curriculum is currently under review. The aim is to develop a coherent three-year history curriculum that is broad, balanced and driven by historical enquiry based questions.

Year 6

Autumn Term The Romans
  • Where did the Roman Empire come from?
  • How did the Roman army help to expand the Roman Empire?
  • How did Britain become part of the Roman Empire? (The three attempts)
  • Who was Boudicca and how did she rebel against the Romans?
  • What did the Romans build after they settled in Britain?
  • How did bathhouses provide leisure for Romans in Britain?
  • What was crime and punishment like in Roman times?
  • What were the religious beliefs of the Romans and who did they worship?
  • What lasting impact did the Romans leave in Britain?
Spring Term Islam and the Crusades
  • How did Islam rise to a ‘Golden Age?’
  • What was the Byzantine Empire?
  • How was the Byzantine Empire under threat?
  • Why did people join the First Crusade?
  • What were the key events and consequences of the First Crusade?
  • How did the crusaders keep control of the Holy Land?
  • How did the Muslims fight back against the crusaders?
  • How did the Muslims re-conquer Jerusalem?
  • Why was there a Third Crusade?
  • What impact did the crusades have on the Holy Land?
Summer Term Norman Conquest - 1066
  • What happened between the Romans leaving Britain and the Normans arriving?
  • What was the succession crisis? 
  • Why was 1066 a year of 3 kings?
  • How did William secure power in England?
  • How did the Harrying of the North help William maintain control?
  • Why is the Domesday Book significant?
  • How did the Normans influence life in England?
  • What happened after William died?

Year 7

Autumn Term Medieval Britain: 1066-1500 What Can the Life of Mansa Musa Reveal about Medieval Mali?
  • How clean were Medieval towns?
  • What was life like in a medieval village?
  • Who were the villeins?
  • How free were ordinary people in the medieval period?
  • What were the causes and consequences of the Black Death?
  • How important were medieval institutions? (Church & Hospitals)
  • How did Mansa Musa become Emperor of Mali?
  • What happened when Mansa Musa went to Mecca?
  • What is the legacy of Mansa Musa?
  • How do we know about the history of Medieval Mali?
  • How and why did Portugal become involved in West Africa?
Spring Term The Tudors and Elizabethan England: 1458-1603 Renaissance: 14th-17th Century
  • The reign of Henry VIII
  • The reign of Edward VI
  • The reign of Mary I
  • Elizabeth's problems
  • Why was the Spanish Armada a problem for Elizabeth?
  • How did Elizabeth deal with the problem of the poor?
  • Life in Elizabethan England
  • How did the church change?
  • The Age of Discovery
  • The Conquistadors and the Columbian Exchange
  • The Gunpowder Plot 
  • Witch Trials 1612 
  • Charles I 
  • Civil War 
  • Cromwell 
  • Charles II & Restoration
  • Great Plague 1665
  • Great Fire of London 1666
  • Glorious Revolution
Summer Term Was the Industrial Revolution a Time of Progress in Britain?
  • How did Britain change during the Industrial Revolution?
  • What was life like working in the domestic system and how was this different to the factory system?
  • How were children treated in the factories?
  • How did Huddersfield contribute to the Industrial Revolution? 
  • How far did government legislation make a difference to the lives of people in the 19th century?
  • Why was housing so poor?
  • Who were the heroes of public health during the Industrial Revolution?

Year 8

Autumn Term Industrial Revolution Empire
  • How did Britain change during the industrial revolution?
  • What was life like working in the domestic system and how was this different to the factory system?
  • What was life like in the factories?
  • How were children treated in the factories?
  • How did Huddersfield contribute to the industrial revolution? 
  • 10 Hour Bill 
  • Why was housing so poor?
  • Who were the heroes of public health during the Industrial Revolution?
  • How did Britain gain its empire?
  • How and why did Britain take control of India?
  • What was the Indian Mutiny?
  • What was the impact of empire on India and Britain?
  • How did Britain lose its empire?
  • How should we remember the British Empire?
Spring Term The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade What is the Story of the Suffragettes?
  • How can we define ‘slavery’?
  • What are the origins of slavery?
  • What made trans-Atlantic slavery different?
  • Why did it expand in the 1700s?
  • How did Britain become involved?
  • How did enslaved people resist?
  • What is the legacy of the trans-Atlantic slave trade in Britain?
  • Who was Kitty Marion?
  • Where did women get the idea that they had a right to vote?
  • How and why did the actions of the campaigners change in 1912?
  • What was the impact of the First World War?
  • Why was Kitty Marion’s story forgotten?
Summer Term The Civil Rights Movement The First World War
  • A study of the Civil Right Movement in the USA and Britain during the 20th century.
  • What were the long-term causes??
  • Why did the war start? 
  • How were men recruited into the army?
  • What was life like in the trenches?
  • Why was it a ‘world war’?
  • What injuries did men get during the war? How were they treated?
  • What was life like on the Home Front?
  • What was the impact of the First World War?

As pupils begin each unit they need to know how it fits into the wider whole so they can see  / learn the particular by locating it in the general. To see trends in history we want to explore recurring thematic themes and use these to map out history and provide a context for deeper learning and understanding

Power and protest Study the changing nature of power and control. How power has been challenged through history and ultimately how democracy was developed.
History as progress Develop a sense of development over time. Appreciate how and why progress was made sometimes in a short space of time whereas sometimes very little progress, even regression, was made for long periods of time.
Beliefs and attitudes How beliefs and attitudes have developed over time and influenced actions.
Health and living conditions The topic of health and sanitation is fundamental to human society but also provides a foundation for later study.
Empire, Migration and settlement Look at how Empire and colonisation have shaped Britain and the wider world from the Ancient Romans through to the decline of the British Empire

What career…?

Historians can enjoy rich, rewarding and varied careers in writing and publishing, research, teaching and consultancy, to name just a few.