History is a popular subject at The Woodroffe School. The department consists of three History specialists, each of whom has an obsessive love for their subject. Fortunately, pupils at Woodroffe tend to be excellent historians too: they ask lots of thoughtful questions, think critically, and enjoy investigating. Consequently, adventures into the past at the Woodroffe school tend to be exciting ones.
History is taught alongside Geography and Religious Studies in the thematic, multi-disciplinary People and Places course. One aspect of this course that pupils particularly enjoy is learning about the rich history of Lyme Regis. Pupils encounter the secret world of the smuggler Jack Rattenbury, survey the devastation of The Great Landslip of 1839, and suffer the privations of the Siege of Lyme Regis: they find that they can never look at the town in the same way again.
In Year 8 pupils discover The Middle Ages, and the Tudor and Stuart eras. They develop the thinking skills they need to carry out investigations into the lives of ordinary people, and to explain the causes and consequences of big religious and political changes that shook these times. They learn that the past is, indeed, a foreign country.
A History of Crime and Punishment and the First and Second World Wars are key focuses of Year 9 History. Pupils enjoy learning about the turbulence of these times, and in the process gain mastery of important skills: they can use sources critically to carry out historical investigations, consider and evaluate different interpretations of the past, and write full explanations of cause and consequence. By Year 9 pupils have become much more sophisticated historians, and many choose to study History or Ancient History at GCSE.
Many pupils choose to study History at GCSE. We follow the Edexcel History specification and are able to offer a varied course through which pupils gain an overview of a broad sweep of time, while zooming in on certain periods for more in-depth investigation. We offer modules in Medicine in Britain 1250 to the present day (with a special focus on The British sector of the Western Front), Anglo-Saxon and Norman England c.1060-88, Superpower relations and the Cold War 1941-91, and The USA 1954-75: conflict at home and abroad. This varied course sharpens pupil’s ability to think critically and analytically, but, more importantly, it’s fascinating.
Ancient History and Classical Civilisation
This is a two for the price of one course in which pupils complete a GCSE in Ancient History in Year 10 and a GCSE in Classical Civilisation in Year 11. We follow the OCR syllabus. In Ancient History pupils learn about the journeys of Alexander the Great, the loves of Cleopatra, Roman Myth and History and the Ancient Celts, while in Classical Civilisation pupils study Life in Pompeii and Rome, and the writings of Virgil and Ovid. This option is intense, but pupils who enjoy learning and are willing to work hard get a great deal out of it.
In History we follow the Edexcel History A level specification. Students study three examined modules: Tudor England from the accession of Henry VIII to the death of Elizabeth I, Luther’s challenge to the Catholic Church, and The British experience of warfare, c1790-1918. Students also carry out a historical investigation into an area of Nazi Germany.
Head of History