Being ambitious with the causes of the First World War: interrogating inevitability


By Gary Howells, published 9th September 1998

Gary Howells asks hard questions about typical teaching and assessment of historical causation at Key Stage 3. Popular activities that may be helpful in addressing particular learning areas, or in teaching pupils to use the terminology of causation, are not in themselves evidence of having acquired a ‘skill'. Howells invites us to ‘think big' about the purposes of teaching about causation and the possibility of helping more pupils not only to understand and explain but to think about the very processes of explanation. Like Mike Gorman and Dale Banham he stresses the importance of a big question in order to keep the pupils focused. He takes apart the stages in his own teaching of causation and shows how he motivates pupils by shining a spotlight on the concept of inevitability. Pupils who have difficulty in remembering and understanding complex information can still find access to challenging historical ideas. Howells outlines some of his principles for ensuring that ‘differentiation' does not leave such pupils with a watered down version.

This resource is FREE for Secondary HA Members.

Non HA Members can get instant access for £2.75

Add to Basket Join the HA