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"modern History "thoughts please !

(10 Posts)
bizzey Mon 08-Apr-13 14:52:21

Really did not know where to put this ...but as it is to do with Margaret Thatcher (RIP) ...here was safer than AIBU !!

Told my boys that she had passed away ...they are year 7 and year 5...I got blank stares ...I asked if they knew who she was ....ds2 said ...I think I have heard of the name before confused.....I have not told them but after a few clues yr7 son says ..."oh was she something to do with Politics"...(I have now sent him away to look her up !)

Really don't want to get into a Maggie debate but ....Vikings/Normans/writing a Cv to become a Roman soldier and the rest is all well and good ....but couldn't 1 lesson a week be on Modern History...

Confusing post I know sorry ...Just wondering if any one else has other views ?
Thanks

RMSeries2 Mon 08-Apr-13 21:09:25

When I was 10 I had no idea who Jim Callaghan was. In fact, when I was 17 I couldn't have told you anything about him. I went on to get a first in politics at Cambridge....

However, first female PM is an important figure. I am sure she'll be somewhere in Gove's new curriculum!

senua Mon 08-Apr-13 23:39:35

But which bits would you cover? There is an awful lot of current affairs out there.
In Broadchurch tonight the Editor made a comment about 'Woodward and Bernstein'. The cub reporter had no idea who they were, guessed at a comedy double-act.grin I asked DD if she knew: she was clueless too.
I think that the important things you pick up (eventually) by osmosis. Obituaries are actually quite a good source of modern history.

cory Tue 09-Apr-13 09:34:06

They can't cover everything at once: if they are to take the time to explain anything in depth, they won't have got through it all by Yr 7.

In the meantime, is there any rule that forbids parents to talk about current events/Modern history/topics of interest?

Mine certainly knew who Margaret Thatcher was at that age- but then we talk around the dinner table and always have done.

morethanpotatoprints Tue 09-Apr-13 21:36:52

I would second the idea of talking to your dc about topics you want them to learn about. As a H.E parent I have found that to gain knowledge you don't have to be sitting in a school, with a desk, exercise book and pen. Discussion and debate is so much better!

YellowandGreenandRedandBlue Tue 09-Apr-13 21:43:18

Maybe you could talk to them? If school had to cover everything in the history of ever everywhere you'd never see them.

This is your responsibility, IMO.

Itsjustafleshwound Tue 09-Apr-13 21:47:05

Just get them a subscription to a good broadsheet newspaper. Sometimes people and historical info have to be seen in context rather than in isolation for it to have any relevance and not just be dry facts.

ZZZenagain Wed 10-Apr-13 14:07:19

If you can remember back, would you have known in year 7 or year 5 the name of a prime minister who had been in power so far back? I don't think it is really unusual that your boys had not heard of Margaret Thatcher.

You are probably right in that history post WW2 is not covered in a great deal of detail - and what also makes it difficult to get an overview is that we are swamped in information about this period so it can be quite overwhelming to cover it.

With dd (12) I find something comes up in say a fictional book, so you explain around it a bit, then that might lead to something else. Thankfully in these days of PCs and Ipads, you can quickly look up anything that crops up in your reading/chat. In a way, you cover gaps i nthis manner, but it is not a detailed chronological sweep of modern history. It is true what you say, most young people probably do leave school not knowing public figures and major events of more recent history. You spend your early adult years catching up on all of this and filling in the gaps as you go IME.

Grasp the moment and educate them yourself. Where you see gaps in their education from school, I think you have to try and cover them yourself, so long as they are still young enough to be amenable to this kind of thing.

Maybe someone in the know can recommend a good book to have on hand.

sittinginthesun Wed 10-Apr-13 16:42:48

My eldest is 9, and history mad, but he only knew that she "was a politician". He knows a lot more now, as I have been busy filling him in on the details. grin

I agree that modern history, like politics, is generally taught across a dinner table. I don't think I really covered it at school until A Level. Shame, really, but history is such a huge subject, it is impossible to cover everything.

meditrina Wed 10-Apr-13 16:50:37

Thread from "The History Club" about when does current events become modern history.

I tend to think of history as being events of at least 50 years ago, and more recent stuff as current affairs. In part because the cycles of events haven't settled in the shorter time frame.

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