History continues to be a politically important subject, as it helps students understand the world in which they live today. At Park Vale Academy we believe that students should have the opportunity to learn about a range of subjects from different time periods and different places around the world. History also teaches students many key transferable skills which are important in all aspects of their work, such as judgement, analysis of sources and an understanding of different points of view. Finally, the History department do everything possible to make learning about the past as interesting and exciting as possible. You will fight battles, try Kings and live many different lives in your history lessons at Park Vale Academy. All the KS3 lessons at Park Vale Academy have been written especially for our students, there are no boring textbooks here!

Experiencing history first hand should also mean students leave the school to visit and find out about the topics we study. In Year 7, all students visit Warwick Castle as part of their Castles topic, in Years 7 and 8 students also get the opportunity to visit the WW1 trenches in our Battlefields trip to Belgium. At GCSE level students in Y10 have the chance to visit our Parliament in Westminster and hopefully will soon be able to visit Berlin as part of the Germany 1918-1945 course.

Students in years 7, 8 & 9 have two lessons per week, year 10 have 3 lessons a week and year 11 have two.

Year 7

Skills  - Key skills needed for history lessons will be taught in the introductory unit. As part of this students will investigate some mysterious disappearances, research their family history and learn about how Nottingham has changed.

Norman Invasion  - Students will learn about the Norman invasion of England in 1066 culminating in taking part in a re-enactment of the Battle of Hastings.

Medieval Life  - Students will find out what it would have been like to live in Medieval England. Will you be a Peasant or a Lord?

Castles  - Students will investigate how Castles became so important in England, see how new technologies changed them over time and have the chance to design their own castle. This will include a visit to Warwick Castle.

Outlaws  - An investigation into how Robin Hood has been interpreted in different ways.

Tudors  - Students will find out about one of the most famous families in history looking at the events of the Tudor period, including finding Elizabeth a husband in Tudor 'Take Me Out' and becoming a boat in the Spanish Armada.

Stuarts  - Students will see how the events of Stuart England changed how our country runs today. You will have the chance to try a king in court and redesign the Union Flag for today.

Year 8

Exploration and the New World  - Students will learn about the tribes of the Americas before the Europeans arrived and what the impact they had.

Slavery  - Students will learn about the Slave trade, the life of Slaves and how these terrible events were ended in running an Abolition campaign. This section also looks at the political and economic reasons for, and outcomes of Slavery.

Revolutions - Pupils will look at the American and French Revolutions to see how Britain was challenged on the world stage.

Industrial Revolution  - Students will find out how life changed as Britain became an Industrialised nation, including Factory trials, Workhouses and Political reform.

Victorian Life  - What did Victorians do for fun? How were their lives changed with the vote? Who was Jack the Ripper?

Year 9

Edwardian Britain and the Road to WW1  - How did people live at the start of the 20th  Century and what happened in Europe that led to a World War.

WW1  - The horrors of the Trenches and the lives of soldiers are investigated, including dressing up as a WW1 soldier.

Between the Wars  - Students will learn how one war led directly to a second with the rise of Dictators such as Hitler, Stalin and Mussolini. Students will also find out about life in America in the 1920s and 1930s.

WW2  - Students will learn about the key battles that took place in WW2 and how the people of Britain dealt with War. Students will also get to find out about some of the most important figures in History with case studies of Churchill and Hitler.

Cold War  - Students will find out how the world went Nuclear and the changes in the lives of people around the world.

UK today- What is Britain like today? How is it run? And how may it change in the future.

GCSE taster - pupils are taught in the style on a GCSE lesson to give them a feeling of what taking GCSE history might entail.


A GCSE in History is an excellent qualification to be able to take to Colleges and Universities, as it is a well-respected course that shows students ability to learn a large amount of content, interpret points of view and write at length. It also is an interesting and thought provoking subject in which we cover a range of differing topics from Ancient Civilisations to events taking place in the news today.

At Park Vale Academy we follow the OCR History A (J415) Syllabus. This is made up of 3 parts:

A study in depth, a study in development and a controlled assessment.

Students are assessed in two exams at the end of Y11 and a controlled assessment completed in class.

Year 10

Medicine Through Time - Students will learn how medicine has changed the way people live from the Prehistoric Period to the Present day. As part of this we will look at:


Egypt - Mummification and the first doctors

Greece - Hippocrates and the start of Medicine

Rome - Public Health and Galen

Medieval - The Plague and Religion

18th  Century & 19th  Century  - Key discoveries from Jenner, Pasteur, Koch, Fleming, Lister and Simpson.

Medicine Today  - Changes in Nursing, New technologies, the NHS and problems today.

Germany 1918-1945 - Students will learn about Germany and how the nation struggled after the First World War and how Hitler took control and led Germany to War. As part of this students will look at:

The Treaty of Versailles, Uprisings in Germany, the Ruhr Crisis, Hyperinflation, Culture, The rise of Hitler and Nazi Party, how Hitler was able to gain power and life in Nazi Germany for Workers, Children and Women.

Year 11

Arab / Israeli Crisis: Controlled Assessment

An investigation into this long running and the very current crisis in the Middle East, looking at why it is taking place and how people live today. This is an assessment worth 25% of the final GCSE grade and will be completed in school. We will use lots of modern sources from the internet including Twitter and a number of news websites and see life in the area with a number of documentaries.


Pupils will have an extensive revision programme to prepare them fully for their GCSE exams. As part of this pupils will be given a range of revision materials which are made in-house, to ensure pupils have the right information to help them revise.