Diversity in the past

The materials in this section are all focused on the choices that teachers have to make about the substantive content of their curriculum. The diversity that all students encounter within the past – the range of specific individuals and groups of people about whom they learn – and the ways in which different topics are treated within the curriculum are known to impact on the extent to which young people engage with school history and on the connections that they see between past and present. The resources in this section illustrate different ways in which teachers have increased the diversity of their curriculum – paying more attention, for example, to women other than monarchs in the early modern period; examining the work of  Black British civil rights campaigners; or questioning the stereotype of the English ‘Tommy’ in examining who fought for Britain on the Western Front. Teachers will need to develop their own subject knowledge if they are to teach more diverse pasts and many of these resources help to provide some of that new knowledge or show where it can be found.

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  • Seeing a different picture: exploring migration through the lens of history

    Article

    Rosie Sheldrake and Dale Banham here share the results of their desire to use the curriculum changes which are upon us to do something which they had intended for some time. Their modern world study was about war and more war, and they had neglected the social and cultural aspects...

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  • 'How our area used to be back then' An oral history project in an east London school

    Article

    How can oral history enquiries engage students with the study of history and help them connect their learning about the past to their present lives? How can oral history engage and develop students' understanding of history as a process of knowledge construction? What scope does local historical study provide for...

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  • Sharing The Past: Northamptonshire's Black History

    Article

    Northamptonshire Black History Association Pub 2008; ISBN:978 0 9557139 1 0; £12.95 [+£2.30 p and p] from: NBHA, Doddridge Centre, 109 St James Road, Northampton, NN5 5LD. How fortunate Northamptonshire history teachers are! With the current emphasis on community cohesion and diversity in the New Secondary Curriculum, they are presented...

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  • Seeing a different picture: exploring migration through the lens of history

    Article

    Rosie Sheldrake and Dale Banham here share the results of their desire to use the curriculum changes which are upon us to do something which they had intended for some time. Their modern world study was about war and more war, and they had neglected the social and cultural aspects...

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  • Walter Tull: Sport, War and Challenging Adversity

    Article

    Produced by the Northamptonshire Black History Association, these packs comprise a teachers' resource book, a schemes of work booklet of 10 activities for teachers to use in the classroom, and a CD of the 52 sources used throughout the schemes of work booklet. The resource book contains National Curriculum subject links and...

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  • Understanding Key Concepts: Diversity

    Article

    This material enables history teachers to explore the concept of diversity. Section 1 discusses the concept of diversity and its importance in the history curriculum. It offers guidance on building the concept of diversity into a unit on the movement and settlement of peoples to, from and within the British...

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  • PowerPoint presentation on developing ways to mainstream Black and Asian British history

    Article

    A new PowerPoint presentation by Dan Lydon on developing ways to mainstream Black and Asian British history in the secondary classroom...Click the link below to open the presentation>>>

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  • The T.E.A.C.H. Report

    Article

    The TEACH report outlines the sort of good practice in teaching sensitive topics which is available for teachers to share, not least through the Historical Association's programme of subject-specific training. 

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  • You should be proud about your history. They make you feel ashamed:' Teaching history hurts

    Article

    As history teachers we are used to encouraging pupils to think; enabling them to express thoughts with clarity both verbally and in written form. Yet, if history as a school subject becomes purely cognitive, then something is missing. History deals with human behaviour and therefore the affective and the emotional...

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  • Identity shakers: cultural encounters and the development of pupils' multiple identities

    Article

    History teachers are increasingly used to the idea that helping pupils reflect on and understand identities is one of the central purposes of history education. In this article Jamie B yrom and Michael Riley reflect on what thinking about identity historically might mean; by considering the history of encounters between...

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  • Teaching controversial issues...where controversial issues really matter

    Article

    This is the fourth in a series of Teaching History articles about teaching history in N orthern Ireland co-authored by Alan McCully. The first two articles (in editions 106 and 114) outlined teaching strategies to help pupils in N orthern Ireland understand and relate to complex and often controversial issues...

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  • Music, blood and terror: making emotive and controversial history matter

    Article

    Lomas and Wrenn, co-authors and compilers of the Historical Association’s DfES-funded T.E.A.C.H 3-19 Report (Teaching Emotive and Controversial History), explore further ideas and examples of good practice from issues arising out of the report’s conclusions. Lomas and Wrenn propose five distinct categories of emotive and controversial history that further develop...

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  • Integrating black British history in the National Curriculum

    Article

    The question of what to include is a constant challenge to those given the responsibility of education, whether writing at the level of a national curriculum or the departmental scheme of work. Dan Lyndon and his department have been rethinking inclusion in history. In any school, representative history is essential...

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  • Uncovering the hidden histories: black and Asian people in the two world wars

    Article

    The stories we tell in history are often stories about ourselves. This can lead to tremendous distortion. Rupert Gaze was shocked when a young black student told him that there was no point in his studying the Second World War because it had nothing to do with him or his...

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  • You hear about it for real in school.' Avoiding, containing and risk-taking in the classroom

    Article

    In this article, Alison Kitson and Alan McCully discuss the findings of their research into history teaching in the most divided part of the United Kingdom: Northern Ireland. Drawing on interviews with students and teachers, they consider what history teaching might contribute to an understanding of the current situation and...

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  • They took Ireland away from us and we've got to fight to get it back'. Using fictional characters to explore the relationship between historical interpretation and contemporary attitudes

    Article

    Helping students to understand how and why people in the present interpret the past differently is a challenge. It is also vital if we are to develop an understanding of why the meanings we ascribe to the past are not fixed, but rather are subject to our own prejudices or...

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  • Polychronicon 113: slavery in 20th-century America

    Article

    Polychronicon was a fourteenth-century chronicle that brought together much of the knowledge of its own age. Our Polychronicon in Teaching History is a regular feature helping school history teachers to update their subject knowledge, with special emphasis on recent historiography and changing interpretation. This edition of 'Polychronicon' is on 'Interpreting...

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  • Britain was our home': Helping Years 9, 10, and 11 to understand the black experience of the Second World War

    Article

    In this article, Helena Stride shows how the Imperial War Museum responded to criticism that insufficient attention had been paid to the contribution of black and Asian people to Britain’s wars. She focuses on one of two resource-packs produced by the Museum, which highlights the experience of Britain’s colonial peoples,...

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  • Hitting the right note: how useful is the music of African-Americans to historians?

    Article

    Here is a wonderful reminder of the richness of materials available to history teachers. With ever greater emphasis being placed on different learning styles, it is a good moment to remind ourselves that we can cater for virtually all of them in our classrooms. This includes a preference for learning...

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  • Thinking from the inside: je suis le roi

    Article

    Dale Banham and Ian Dawson show how active learning deepens students’ understanding of attitudes and reactions to the Norman Conquest. At the same time they build a bold argument for active learning, including a direct strike at the two most common objections to it. Many teachers still see it as...

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