to think History is more than famous white men, the monarchy and wars?(112 Posts)
BTW who was Jimmy Savile? Suddenly seems to have vanished from the history books. Circa 2012 I believe.
To me, having been educated in a system where the chronological approach meant learning about the stone age when just starting out at about age 7 and progressing chronologically through to about 1940 by age 12, I can't understand how anyone could possibly get a grasp of the essential narrative if doing the Civil War in Yr 7 and WW2 in Yr 8 (for instance) -- this sort of thing:
I know my friends' older children learnt about Cromwell, the separation from Rome, and the War of the Roses in Yr8 (I think it was the Norman invasion, Black Death and Thomas Becket in Yr7).
I would like to see local history included, how parishes worked and tithe, courts and coroners, and taxation as all of these things have reference to how the country works today and why we do things the way we do.
Agree with Procrastinating and riskit in terms of chronological teaching and having time to fit all that teaching in.
Also think that ivy and PolterGoose make good points.
I'm one of Procrastinating's 50+s, and I do try not to be hung up on dates as such, but (as I said before) I do like having some overall sense of the order/context of events. Generally, I feel that my primary and secondary schools' teaching of history had a reasonable stab at providing a gallop through 'Britain through the ages', but did poorly at giving us a sense of comparative history. By which I mean we ended with an overview of Romans in Britain --> Tudors and Stuarts --> Britain 's role in 20th century World Wars, etc., but almost no knowledge of what was happening in the rest of the world at the same time.
So I appreciate those timelines you see in children's history books today that tell you things like (for example), the mid 1300s mean not just the Black Death in Europe, but also the Ming dynasty taking control of China from the Mongols and the rise of the Vijayangar empire in south India.
math - I can only speak for my experience, but I think you learn to understand non-chronological narrative very much the same way you learn to understand all the other juxtapositions. Sometimes it's the most important thing to know what happened before and after what you're studying. Other times, as hair says, you really need a grasp of the big world picture.
There's an exhibit at York Minster at the moment, which I thought was brilliant, which has three juxtaposed timelines - one shows the history of the minster itself, one the history of England and then Britain at the same time, and the third refers to wider events in the world, like the building of the Taj Mahal or the Great Wall of China.
I never got to do anything like that at school because 'chronology' effectively meant 'England, then after 1603, Britain' (as a person with a Welsh mum you can imagine what I thought to that! And it never meant Ireland, either!).
The problem is, chronological approaches tend to pretend to be comprehensive, but they never can be. There will always be something else that needs to be taken into account. It's true of any teaching approach (IMO) that there will always be something else that needs taking into account - but that's why it's better to use an approach that doesn't make claims to being comprehensive, or a 'basis' for the subject.
We were in a 'science and technology' stream in the 1960s and AS A CLASS we rebelled and actually went on strike against having to study history at all.
The history teacher wasn't really that bad.
We weren't punished - the HT - an OBE-recognised Scottish educationist -arrived in short order and gave us a lecture I have never forgotten.
He stressed that (paraphrasing) when learning History you are learning information collection, analysis, assessment and management skills which are applicable to any field of work (or play?). [Geography is similar]
So if I were designing a History syllabus, this would be my starting point, and then I would think 'what would be the most appropriate topics for MY cohort of pupils to learn now to help them to understand their place in current society and the world, and to enthuse them for further study later in life?'
I later graduated in Public Health Engineering and an early real-time application was to produce an urgent national assessment of the amount of underground 'dereliction' of water and sewer services.
Double decker bus size holes were regularly appearing suddenly in old industrial city centre streets and there was a huge industrial lobby for Government to spend eye-watering sums to sort things out in the 70s-80s.
Our first port of call was historical records of population growth, of Cholera in the 1800s, and the London 'Great Stink' which closed the Houses of Parliament.
If you want something done, create a 'great stink' which affects Westminster!
IM A SHOUTY MUM !!! and I say.......
WATCH HORRIBLE HISTORIES!!!
I've learnt EVERYTHING I need to know from there and Im now in my element teaching DC.
Hated history and its boring (mostly) facts. HH tells it like it is (or Was!!)
and with humour and songs that children and adults learn quickly!!
And they cover everone and everything.
Ha! Just found you earlier Kim147!!!
Get the HH fans on here!! seriously.
Horrible Histories is fab and almost always accurate although clearly it's not its job to give full context and understanding... love the explanation of the causes of WW1, though, one of the best I've seen.
I don't think you really get a full explanation of the protestant revolution from learning that Martin Luther liked to have meetings sitting on the bog, though. It's probably the bog stuff that you remember, not the full causes and ramifications...
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