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​Applying to study History at University?

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Have you ever thought about studying history further? It so happens, as I am sure that many Upper Sixth students are aware, that the UCAS application process is open. If you are thinking of studying history then read on for some useful information such as tips, hints and advice.

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Violence in the Middle Ages…and Other Interesting Facts

Friday, August 31, 2012


Ian Mortimer is a godsend for history teachers trying to encourage reluctant students to do a bit of reading.  He has an engaging, vivid style, enjoys the story and also seeks out the sort of historical nuggets that still elude textbooks.  And unlike the stroppy Terry Deary he probably doesn’t mind his books being used in classes, or recommended by teachers.

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Macmillan’s secret role in the Cuban Missile Crisis

Friday, August 24, 2012

Much of the study of the Cuban Missile Crisis focuses on the Soviet–US confrontation. However, it is important to remember that the UK was the third nuclear party involved in the crisis. This excellent article from Total Politics examines the role played by the British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan during the Cuban Missile Crisis - it seems he was more closely involved than is typically thought.

Macmillan’s secret role in the Cuban Missile Crisis

Starter Activity - Cold War Wipeout Challenge

Monday, November 23, 2009

Here’s a great starter activity from Andy Lawrence using tutor2u’s Wipeout Challenge quiz format…

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Into the Storm - Churchill and the War Years

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

If you missed the superb Into the Storm last night, then it is well worth catching on BBC iPlayer.

Loads of reenactments of key WW2 events in there for students, including Dunkirk, the War Cabinet, Yalta and the bombing of Dresden. The 1945 General Election is also featured prominently.

Watch Into the Storm

The Day the Wall Fell (BBC Radio 2- Tuesday 3 Nov)

Sunday, November 01, 2009

A quick heads up about a programme on Radio 2 next week.

According to the programme guide:

Jeremy Vine marks the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall by looking at its history, from construction in 1961, to the day it was finally breached on 9 November 1989.

Jeremy visits the city to examine what remains of the Wall and speaks to those who lived on both sides - East and West. He visits some of the key locations in the Wall’s history including Checkpoint Charlie; the Brandenburg Gate; Bernauer Strasse, which was cut in two in 1961; and Mauerstrasse, where the largest remaining section of the Wall exists today. Jeremy explores why the Wall went up in the first place, why it came down and asks whether the psychological scars of a divided Germany still remain.

The programme contains firsthand testimony from Germans who escaped from the East and those who helped them. It also considers what it was like to live in a state controlled by the secret police or Stasi and hears from a political reformer who was held in the notorious Hohenschönhausen prison. He considers to what extent the phenomenon of “ostalgie” or nostalgia for life in the former East Germany still exists, particularly as some former Stasi and government officials have prospered since the Wall came down 20 years ago.

There are interviews with escapee Joachim Neuman, who spent two years working on tunnels under the Wall to bring his girlfriend to the West; and escapee Irmgard Muller, who escaped from East Berlin under a false passport to be with her husband. We also hear from West Berliner Horst Seeliger, who was in East Berlin on November 9 1989, and one of the first people to cross back through the border into the West; and Vera Lengsfeld, an East German reformist politician who was imprisoned by the Stasi.

Additional contributors include historian Frederick Taylor; Sunday Times journalist Peter Millar and veteran BBC reporter Brian Hanrahan, who both covered the fall of the wall; and Ben Bradshaw, Secretary Of State for Culture, Media & Sport, who was a young BBC reporter in Berlin in 1989.

Berlin Wall - BBC Archive now available online

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

A terrific resource from the BBC archive has recently been updated and upgraded.  The Berlin Wall archive contains a rich collections of video and audio clips explaining the entire history of the Berlin Wall.  An essential AV resource.

Visit the BBC Archive on the Berlin Wall

Revision Video - Solidarity in Poland

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The Polish challenge to the Soviets from Lech Walesa’s Solidarity trade union is described in this 10 minute You Tube video.

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Apartheid Resources

Monday, October 19, 2009

If you need resources for the study of Apartheid in South Africa I recommend taking a look at the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg. Having visited it recently, I can say it really is fantastic. You can access educational resources from their site at apartheidmuseum.org

History Videos - Cold War - Checkpoint Charlie

Friday, October 16, 2009

This excellent short CNN video tells the story of Checkpoint Charlie…

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History Videos - The Berlin Airlift

This ten-minute newsreel video tells the “official” story of the Allied Berlin Airlift…

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A level Resources from The Cabinet Papers

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

If you need some A level resources for units on British History between 1915 and 1978, take a look at The Cabinet Papers area of the National Archives site. There are some dedicated A level materials. The site has particularly useful sections on the origins of the NHS and the Welfare State.

Writing the History of the English Civil War

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

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Paul Seward, Director of the History of Parliament, formerly a Clerk in the House of Commons will speak on Politics into History: Hobbes and Clarendon consider the English Civil War at Richmond & Twickenham branch meeting in the Vestry Hall, 21, Paradise Road, Richmond 8pm Thursday 15 October 2009.

The massive History of the Rebellion by Edward Hyde, Earl of Clarendon (1609-74) is the most famous contemporary history of the English Civil War; the philosopher Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679), best known for his towering work of political thought, Leviathan, also wrote on the Civil War in a book he called Behemoth.

Both men were working on their accounts at the same time; both were intimately connected with the politics of their time; and they knew each other very well. What can their work tell us about how the Civil War was explained by contemporaries? More broadly, how politics is transmuted into history - and history into politics?

6th Formers especially welcome!

Admission free to HA members: guests £2;

A level Coursework Research

Monday, September 28, 2009

If you want a really good site to immerse your A level students in the world of research try British History Online

A Level Black Separatism Resources

Thursday, September 24, 2009

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If you are looking for resources on Malcolm X, the New York Public Library has a great educational resource guide. These could be used in class or for independent research.

Creative A Level Teaching - Getting them to Read!

Monday, September 21, 2009

A way to introduce a topic, give an overview or just get them to read content to be discussed in lesson.

This actually works and students do like doing it!

Students are given two or three sides of text, or a section of a text book.
Students are split into groups of three. There is a reader, a writer and a runner.
Each group is allocated a pack of ten question cards
(different colour for different groups). The same ten questions are in each pack

The cards are kept at the front of the classroom
When the teacher says, ‘Go!’ The runner runs to get a card and takes it back to the group
The reader is busily reading the text ( although more often than not the whole group end up reading it)
When they find the answer the writer runs to the front with the written answer.

The teacher checks that the answer is correct and then the runner is allowed to take the next card.

It is best if the cards are shuffled so that they do not all have the same card at the same time.
The first group with all the cards gone is the winner.

A Level Research: Early Civil Rights Activists

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

www.biography.com is an excellent way to introduce A level students to research. Students can be asked to research the backgrounds, aims, methods and achievements of early Black activists such a Booker T Washington, W.E.B. Dubois, Marcus Garvey, A. Philip Randolph, Ida B Wells-Barnett…
Obviously this site could be used with many different topics.

History Categories

Sunday, February 01, 2009


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