Using narratives and big pictures to address the challenges of a 2-year KS3 curriculum

Teaching History article

Natalie Kesterton, last updated: 1st October 2019

Plugging the gaps

Faced with cutting her Key Stage 3 curriculum to two years, Natalie Kesterton and her department were determined to do more with less. Not only did they want to ensure that their pupils developed a secure, wide-ranging knowledge of British and world history, they also wanted to address deficits in pupils’ chronological security and ‘sense of period’. Kesterton shares here the twin strategies of ‘big story frameworks’ and ‘plug the gap narratives’, through which she and her department have risen to this challenge. She explores the tensions arising from a desire to build pupils’ substantive knowledge, via narratives and frameworks, and to make explicit the contested nature of these.

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