History & Politics

Blue Coat School > Curriculum > Subjects > History & Politics

Curriculum Intent

The history curriculum at Blue Coat aims to deliver excellent history over 7 years, using a range of quality sources and texts and introducing high level of history discussion; a Curriculum that is academic, challenging, and inclusive of all, which inspires students to continue study at GCSE, A Level and beyond. We look to contribute to the school aim of living life in all its fullness, offering extra-curricular opportunities for students to experience and engage with History outside of the classroom.

We offer a broad and balanced curriculum that inspires curiosity through high quality storytelling and delivers key knowledge of chronology. We look to enable students to make connections and build their knowledge and understanding of events and societies throughout their time at Blue Coat.

We aim to provide students with coherent knowledge of Britain’s past as well as that of the wider world, to help students address key questions of how Britain has changed and influenced/been influenced by the wider world.

We embed key disciplinary concepts of change/continuity, cause/consequence, similarity/difference, significance and how the past has been interpreted through a combination of depth and overview studies. We also embed key substantive concepts like empire, Church, and revolution to help students build their understanding of the past. We aim to establish and revisit these key disciplinary and substantive concepts in different contexts and increasing complexity to allow students to develop and build their understanding of them. We aim to teach students to think critically, distinguish between fact and opinion, and form judgements based on evidence.

We encourage personal development through introducing and developing themes of citizenship, diversity and tolerance, emphasising moral and social events such as the Holocaust and the Civil Rights Movement. We aim to deliver the school’s CHRIST values and encourage students to reflect on where they are prominent in lessons. We encourage students to see themselves as citizens of the world, understanding not just how others have made a difference, but how they themselves can make a difference in their society and in the world.

Teaching and Learning

In history and politics we believe in delivering an ambitious yet highly inclusive curriculum to all. Our vision for Teaching & Learning is to ensure all students access the “full” curriculum and learn the breadth of content. 

Our staff have high expectations of all pupils and focus on embedding our 3Rs:  

  • Ready
  • Respectful
  • Responsible

All lessons focus on embedding the whole school Blue Coat approach:

  • Explaining and Modelling
  • Do & Practice
  • 4forAll Toolkit leading to inclusive practice:
    • Key words/Reading
    • Use of time
    • Chunk and check
    • Questioning
  • Appropriate verbal, written and visual feedback

Reading is an essential strategy within lessons. You will see staff applying the three reading strategies of:

How can parents help?

Reading Resources


  • Catherine, Called Birdy – Karen Cushman
  • The Coram Boy – Jamila Gavin
  • Chains – Laura Halse Anderson
  • Hetty Feather – Jaqueline Wilson
  • The Ruby in the Smoke – Phillip Pullman
  • Warhorse – Michael Morpurgo
  • Private Peaceful – Michael Morpurgo
  • When Hitler stole pink rabbit – Judith Kerr
  • The Book Thief – Markus Zusak
  • The Diary of Anne Frank
  • A Young People’s History of the United States – Howard Zinn adapted by Rebecca Stefoff
  • Things a Bright Girl can do – Sally Nichols


  • Witch Child – Celia Reese
  • A Little History of the World –  E.H Gombrich
  • The Five – Hallie Rubenhold
  • The Time Traveller’s Guide to Elizabethan England – Ian Mortimer
  • Maus: a survivor’s tale (and sequel) – Art Spiegelman
  • The Origins of the Cold War – Martin McCauley


  • The Cousin’s War Series – Phillipa Gregory
  • Our Man in Havana
  • Wolf Hall – Hilary Mantel
  • New Worlds, Lost Worlds: The Rule of the Tudors – Susan Brigden
  • The History of Modern Britain – Andrew Marr

Places you could visit:





  • Edexcel GCSE History
  • AQA A Level History
  • AQA A Level Politics

Enrichment & Experiences

Recent/Upcoming trips include 

  • Year 11 – Berlin
  • Year 10 – Whitechapel
  • Year 9 – Imperial War Museum London
  • Year 8 – Black Country Living Museum
  • Year 7 – Charterhouse


2022 Results

  • GCSE 2022 – History results in the top 20% nationally.
  • 41% grades 7-9 compared to 28% nationally
  • 87& grades 4-9 compared to 70% nationally
  • A-Level – 78% A*-B, above national average (66%)


  • 89% of students went on to study in higher education at University or take up an apprenticeship.
  • 3 students over the past two years have gone on to Oxbridge: 1 to Cambridge to study law, 1 to Cambridge to study Politics, 1 to Oxford to study law.
  • Others have gone to University of York to study History, Sheffield to study History, Warwick to study Politics, Leeds and Leicester to study Law, and Liverpool to study International Relations with French.
  • Other courses studied at university include English Literature, Business, Primary Education and Criminology.