Welcome to the History department at Bridgewater School, where we firmly believe that History is more than a collection of dates or a list of Kings or Queens. History is something that can show us a roadmap of where we have come from and, more importantly, the path we should be taking in the future.
Year 7 starts with an overview of the important work that an historian does, and students learn the basics of analysing evidence, checking for bias and putting things in chronological order. We then put these skills into action by examining the medieval world, examining diverse topics such as the Norman Conquest, the power of the medieval Church and the life of a medieval peasant. Finally we also look at Castles in Britain and we run an annual castle-building content which has become a firm favourite with the students.
In Year 8 we move into world history and examine the origins and the devastation caused by the slave trade, paying particular importance to African civilisations as well as the Americas. We also look at early modern history including the Reformation and Elizabethan England before analysing the impact of the English Civil War. In Year 9, we move into the modern era and examine the importance of the Industrial Revolution, looking closely at some local history as well as the eras of WWI and WWII.
History is an extremely popular GCSE option, with students learning the OCR Modern World syllabus. Results are excellent and we are pleased to note the number of students staying on into the Sixth Form to study History at A-level. GCSE History covers a huge range of subjects including a depth study of the USA in the 20th century, a study of International Relations and the causes of WWII, the Cold War up to the Vietnam War, and then an overview of how warfare has changes British society from the Vikings until the Iraq War. Finally we also examine a depth study of the English Civil War from its origins, whilst also examining Cromwell’s republic and the restoration of Charles II.
We also strongly believe in the value of seeing history in-situ and undertake a host of trips. In previous years these have included Eyam in Derbyshire, the castles of North Wales, Leeds Armouries, Styal Mill and Thackrays in Leeds. We also take a bi-annual trip to the USA and have visited New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Washington, Los Angeles and San Francisco over recent visits.