New Curriculum Part 3: planning for progression from KS3 to GCSE

Clio et cetera

Consider the number of substantive concepts needed to make sense of American independence - liberty, freedom, rights, taxation, representation... Consider the number of substantive concepts needed to make sense of American independence – liberty, freedom, rights, taxation, representation…

I recently wrote about why it makes sense for schools to think about their history curriculum in terms of a ‘five-year plan’ in which what is learned in Key Stage 3 contributes directly to what is studied at GCSE. I heard recently that someone is doing the rounds at the moment making the case that, in order to prepare children for GCSE, we simply need to drill them in question ‘types’ lower down the school: as long as pupils can recognise words such as ‘describe’, ‘explain’ and ‘evaluate’, then they will be well-set for GCSE.

I could not disagree with this more.

For one, I have absolutely no desire to spend Key Stage 3 drilling children in question types. For one it would be tedious and dull. Secondly, it’s very likely…

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