Teaching Year 9 to take on the challenge of structure in narrative

Teaching History article

Last updated: 12th July 2019

Reflecting on challenges that had surfaced in their own and others’ efforts to get pupils to write historical narratives, Rachel Foster and Kath Goudie went back to the drawing board to consider the disciplinary purposes of narrative. They used both historical scholarship and theoretical works by historians on narrative construction. Their difficulty was how to create a space in which pupils have to think about narrative structure as deliberately constructed artifice, rather than relying on the shape of content exposition tacitly imbibed from teacher or text. The article sets out how they eventually achieved this, and how the side-benefits of a new knowledge security liberated pupils to play with alternative constructions.

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