Humanities – making sense of the world we
Key Stage 3 – Years 8 & 9
In Year 8 students work at developing their subject specific skills as well as developing a greater understanding of the world in which they live and how they fit into this.
In History, students begin their course studying the reign of Elizabeth 1st. Students then move on to look at the major events during the Stuart dynasty in order to gain an understanding of the making of the UK.
The events in the UK are then compared to events in France during the French Revolution in order for students to gain an understanding of the development of political ideas such as democracy, which are as relevant in today’s society as they were in the early modern period.
In the Summer Term students will study the Industrial Revolution and consider ‘What did the Victorians do for us?’, and will complete their Year 8 history studies with a study of the ‘History of Football’ to coincide with the 2014 World Cup.
In Geography, students begin the year considering their connections with the world in which they live and then go on to develop some of their basic geographical map skills.
Students will then explore Britain and continue their geographical studies with units on population, the environment and an in depth study of Brazil to link with the 2014 World Cup.
Key Stage 3 - Year 9
In Year 9 students work towards their Entry Level Certificate qualifications in History and Geography and study a number of topics during the academic year.
In History, students begin their course with a study of the Industrial Revolution via the Development of the British Railway System concentrating on the careers of George Stephenson and his son Robert (who the Stephenson Academy is named after) and Isambard Kingdom Brunel.
Students then complete their studies of the Victorian era by investigating ‘Surgery in the Industrial Modern World from 1700 to the present day’ before moving on to studying ‘Conflict in the Twentieth Century’, paying particular attention to both World War One and Two.
In Geography, students begin the year thinking about why people settled in particular areas, use a Burgess Model diagram to describe a modern city and consider how the London Docklands has changed over time to the modern day. Students then compare British settlements with those in Brazil, making a comparison between those who live in the wealthy areas of Rio de Janeiro to those who live in favelas.
Students then move on to finding out where volcanoes and earthquakes happen, and what impact the structure of the earth and its tectonic plates has on those who live in active zones.
Students then complete their Geography Entry Level Certificate by studying ‘Coasts’, considering how erosion and deposition can shape our coastlines, before moving on to studying the effects that ‘Tourism’ has on the world that we live in. In the Summer Term students will be asked to complete a topic on a foreign country of their choice.
Key Stage 4 - Years 10 & 11
In Key Stage 4, Years 10 and 11 work towards their Humanities GCSE qualification by studying a ‘Society in change: the USA, 1945 – 1975’ in History.
This involves students making comparisons between Capitalism and Communism, why an Iron Curtain was created across Europe following World War Two, and how close the world came to nuclear war during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Students also consider what effect the Vietnam War had on America, and how the various protest movements brought about significant change for minority groups and US society as a whole.
In Geography, students learn about ‘People and their environments’ by considering the distribution of the world’s population and what effects urbanisation, natural disasters and climate change have on us as a world population.
Students then complete their GCSE course by studying a Religious Education unit on ‘Christianity and contemporary lifestyles’. This requires students to study some Christian beliefs and practices and then consider how they shape Christian relationships with others and attitudes to contemporary problems.
Students finally complete their Humanities GCSE studies by completing a ‘Controlled Assessment’ on one particular area of study, which may vary from year to year.
Key Stage 5 - Years 12 & 13
Year 12 and 13 students are given a chance to develop their studies and skills further by studying for further qualifications (a GCSE History Short Course for example), or may aim to retake qualifications in order to improve grades for courses previously studied in Key Stage 4.