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Hele's School

Hele's School

Hele's School A great place to learn. A great place to grow.


Why do we teach History?

History at Hele's aims to stimulate an interest in, and enthusiasm for, the past.


The historical skills students acquire during their time at Hele's School prepare them for employment, adult life and the future. By making History relevant, reflective, challenging and innovative, we promote the acquisition of knowledge and understanding of human activity in the past at a local, and international level, linking it with the present as appropriate. This gives students the confidence and pride in their knowledge of the world and their community. We ensure that students’ knowledge is rooted in an understanding of the nature and use of historical evidence so that students have the knowledge to be successful.


We want our students to enjoy their learning and thrive in an environment that encourages respect and tolerance. We help students understand the development, over time, of social and cultural values and provide our students with a balanced outlook on national and international problems their relation to the society in which we all live. This ensures our students are supported into meaningful adult lives and can contribute positively to society.


We encourage students to develop essential life skills such as the ability to locate and extract information from primary and secondary sources and analyse and organise this information to construct logical verbal or written arguments which they can communicate articulately. Students are challenged and supported to develop questioning, reasoning, analytical skills, communication and self-reliance.


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We are a dedicated team of subject specialists with a passion for inspiring in all our History students a curiosity and life-long love of learning. Furthermore, we are committed to encouraging and developing their historical skills, such as communicating a coherent argument, analysing and evaluating a range of source material and making critical judgements on different interpretations of the past. We support and challenge all our students to reach and exceed expectations to ensure they leave us with a qualification they can be proud of and with the skills valued by universities and employers alike. We strive to bring the past alive and share our passion and enthusiasm for our fascinating subject so that our students have a better understanding of the present through a comprehensive body of historical knowledge as well as a desire to learn more.

Key Stage 3 

At KS3 our students develop a strong sense of chronology through studying a range of relevant and engaging periods of British and wider world history. Through a range of investigations and a coherent scheme of assessment students will engage with variety of interesting topics while developing a strong foundation in the skills required for studying History at KS4 and KS5.

At KS3 students will study:
  • Britain before 1066
  • What was life like before the Normans came?
  • The Norman Conquest & Medieval Britain and the World
  • Is this the beginning of Britain as we know it?
  • What were the similarities and differences between Britain and the wider world?
  • The Tudors and the Stuarts
  • How should the Tudors be remembered: as bloody monarchs or Renaissance kings and queens?
  • Why was there such a challenge to the monarchs’ divine right’ to rule in the 17th century?
  • The Transatlantic Slave Trade & African American Civil Rights
  • What were the human and economic costs of the Transatlantic Slave Trade?
  • How did individual protest become a national phenomenon in the USA?
  • The Industrial Revolution
  • Was the Industrial Revolution a more positive or more negative time in British history?
  • The First & Second World War, including the inter-war period
  • What were the causes, events, and consequences of the First & Second World War?
  • How did a democratic country like Germany end up with Hitler?

Key Stage 4 

Our KS4 curriculum is varied and engaging and is popular with students and staff alike. Alongside high quality teaching our students will benefit from a comprehensive revision package to prepare them for final exams. They will build on the knowledge and skills laid down at KS3 through a study of four fascinating topics and many of our students will continue their study of History at A-level.

Current Year 11 students sitting their exams in Summer 2022 will follow the AQA (8145) specification and will study:

  •  Conflict and Tension Between East and West, 1945-1972 (The Cold War era)
  • America, 1840-1895 (Settlement of the West by white migrants and the destruction of the Plains Indians’ lifestyle)
  • Britain: Health and the People, c1000 to the present (the development of medical understanding and treatment across an extensive period)
  • Elizabethan England, 1568-1603 (The later years of Elizabeth I’s reign)

Students will be assessed at the end of Year 11 with two equally weighted exam papers:
  • Paper 1: America, 1840-1895 & Conflict and Tension Between East and West, 1945-1972
  • Paper 2: Britain: Health and the People, c1000 to the present & Elizabethan England, c1568-1603

Current Year 9 and Year 10 students will follow the Edexcel (1HI0) specification and will study:

  • Medicine in Britain c.1250-present day & The Historical Environment: The British sector of the Western Front 1914-1918: injuries, treatment and the trenches
  • Early Elizabethan England 1558-1588
  • The American West c.1835-1895
  • Weimar and Nazi Germany 1918-1939

Students will be assessed at the end of Year 11 with three exam papers:

  • Paper 1: Medicine & The Western Front — worth 30%, 1 hour 15 minutes long
  • Paper 2: Elizabeth & America — worth 40%, 1 hour 45 minutes long
  • Paper 3: Weimar and Nazi Germany — worth 30%, 1 hour 20 minutes long

Key Stage 5 

KS5 students can hone their historical skills in a supportive yet challenging environment. Alongside engaging exam courses, they will further develop the skills required for higher education through a coursework investigation around the extent of Germany’s responsibility for causing WWI. They will be supported in building up the relevant knowledge, carrying out their own research to produce a coherent and sustained argument that evaluates the views of other historians and explains their own interpretation.

At KS5 students will follow the Edexcel (9HIO) specification and will study:

Yr 12

  • The Crusades, c1095-1204
  • Anglo-Saxon England and the Anglo-Norman Kingdom, c1053-1106

Yr 13

  • The British Experience of Warfare, c1790-1918
  • Coursework: Historians have disagreed about the significance of German Imperial ambitions in the origins of the First World War. What in your view was the significance of German Imperial ambitions in the origins of the First World War?

Students will be assessed at the end of Year 13 with three exam papers and their coursework essay:

  • The Crusades, c1095-1204 (30%)
  • Anglo-Saxon England and the Anglo-Norman Kingdom, c1053-1106 (20%)
  • The British Experience of Warfare, c1790-1918 (30%)
  • Coursework (20%)

Every other year our Post 16 students and those planning to take A-level History can attend the department visit to the battlefields of WWI in Belgium and Northern France. This is a fantastic opportunity to enhance their learning by developing their knowledge and deepening their understanding.