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The DfE is conducting a review of the primary and secondary National Curriculum.
This site contains the statutory programmes of study for National Curriculum subjects which maintained schools must follow until a new curriculum is in place.

Exemplification for foundation subjects

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History exemplification standards file level 7

Pupil's profile

Pupil E is well motivated and interested in history. She is a confident pupil who enjoys working in a team but is equally happy pursuing an investigation on her own. She understands difficult concepts quickly and enjoys researching and writing about different problems and issues in history. An effective communicator, she has a good command of language and can explain her thinking clearly.

Evidence groups

 

Why were so many foreigners accused of being Jack the Ripper?

Context

This enquiry about Britain’s ethnic and cultural diversity focused on the diverse population of the East End of London in the late 19th century. Pupils studied a collection of maps and photographs of Whitechapel in the 1880s before using the 1881 census to find out about the cultural and ethnic diversity of the area. They produced a map showing the countries of origin of different migrants and their occupations.

In the next phase of the enquiry, pupils made a detailed investigation of Israel Lipski, a Polish-Jewish migrant who was hanged for murdering his landlady in 1887. They found out about the main events in his life and discussed what these revealed about attitudes at the time. In the final part of the enquiry, pupils used an extensive source collection relating to the Whitechapel murders. They investigated the responses of the police, the media, and the general public to the murders, and then wrote an essay to answer the question ‘Why were so many foreigners accused of being Jack the Ripper’.

Pupil's work

Essay: Why were so many foreigners accused of being Jack the Ripper?

Essay: Why were so many foreigners accused of being Jack the Ripper? (cont.)

Assessment Commentary

Throughout this enquiry Pupil E asked relevant and interesting questions about past situations and events. She has compared and contrasted the diverse experiences, values and beliefs of people in the past.

Thinking historically:
Pupil E has shown a detailed knowledge of attitudes towards the Whitechapel murders and the values that underpinned them. In her essay she has considered several reasons why the murders were blamed on foreign migrants and has used evidence from a range of sources to support her reasoning. Her discussion of cultural diversity in 1880s Whitechapel and of press and popular attitudes to the murders did not draw on the full range of sources that she had used. However, overall, her work shows that she understands the nature of diversity in 1880s Whitechapel and the characteristic responses to the murders.

Historical enquiry:
Pupil E used an extensive source collection as part of her enquiry including maps, photographs, census data, official reports, diaries and newspaper reports. She selected appropriate sources, evaluated each source in the light of their nature, origins and purpose, and drew conclusions from them to support her enquiry. Her written work was relevant and substantiated, but could be further improved in terms of structure and organisation.

Next steps

To progress, Pupil E needs to:

  • ensure her written responses draw on the full range of sources used in the enquiry

  • fully develop each of the main points when writing explanations and arguments.

Did war get women the vote?

Context

This sequence of lessons helped pupils plan and carry out an independent enquiry into an aspect of women’s suffrage.

Pupils looked at a photograph of human letters at 10 Downing Street in 1910 and watched a 10-minute clip from a documentary, which gave an overview of the campaign for women’s suffrage. They devised questions about the campaign and as a class reflected on the difference between ‘big’ and ‘little’ questions.

Each pupil then defined an enquiry question. Pupil E’s initial question was ‘Why did women get the vote?’

Using ‘enquiry planning sheets’ pupils refined their questions, planned their research and decided how to communicate their findings. Following comments from two of her friends and the teacher, Pupil E refined her enquiry question to: ‘Did war get women the vote?’ She chose to communicate her findings through a presentation and her teacher suggested that she might like to use it to teach his AS history group. She also created cartoon-analysis and card-sorting activities for the lesson.

Pupil's work

1.Enquiry planning sheet [pdf 97kb]
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Enquiry planning sheet

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Presentation: Did war get women the vote?

3.Cartoon analysis [png 257kb]

Cartoon analysis

When teaching the lesson she ensured that the year 12 students developed a clear view on the issue and supported their arguments with appropriate evidence.

4.Card sort activity [pdf 35kb]
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Card sort activity

When teaching the lesson she ensured that the year 12 students developed a clear view on the issue and supported their arguments with appropriate evidence.

Assessment Commentary

Pupil E has a good knowledge of the development of democracy in Britain. Her confident teaching was based on detailed historical knowledge and clear thinking about the issue. She has explained why past events occurred, analysed the importance of a variety of factors and produced clear lines of argument. Her written and oral work were focussed, detailed and engaging.

Thinking historically:
Pupil E has produced a clear, detailed analysis of the reasons why women over 30 gained the vote in 1918. The presentation and card-sorting activity she devised for the AS history students, and her explanations during the year 12 lesson, showed that she was able to make a substantiated judgement about the significance of the war as a causal factor in women’s suffrage.

Historical enquiry:
Pupil E’s enquiry planning sheet shows that she can define and refine an enquiry question. She used a range of source materials to pursue her enquiry and made a detailed evaluation of the cartoon in order to devise a learning activity for the year 12 lesson. She drew conclusions from the source materials, selecting and evaluating them in the light of their nature, origin and purpose.

Next steps

To progress, Pupil E needs to:

  • investigate a wider range of historical issues by independently devising and refining her own enquiry questions

  • evaluate a wider range of historical sources and use them constructively as evidence for historical enquiries.

Did Germany cause the First World War?

Context

This work was produced at the end of an enquiry into the causes of the First World War. Using a combination of film clips, written accounts, maps and decision-making exercises, pupils identified the concerns of the ‘great powers’ in the years before the war. In small groups they investigated the issues and made a detailed study of Kaiser Wilhelm II. Through a series of counterfactual questions they explored Germany’s responsibility for the war.

Before reaching their own judgement on the issue, pupils compared the interpretations of three historians and discussed how and why they had reached different conclusions about the causes of the First World War. At the end of the enquiry, pupils wrote an essay answering the question ‘Did Germany cause the First World War?’

Pupil's work

Essay: Did Germany cause the First World War? (page 1)

Pupil E wrote her essay independently.

Essay: Did Germany cause the First World War? (page 2)

Pupil E wrote her essay independently.

Essay: Did Germany cause the First World War? (page 3)

Pupil E wrote her essay independently.

Assessment Commentary

Pupil E has developed a good knowledge of the nature and causes of conflict in the past. She has made substantiated judgements about the causes of historical events. Her writing shows that she can produce independent and clear arguments based on detailed historical knowledge.

Thinking historically:
Pupil E shows a detailed knowledge of the causes of the First Wold War. She has produced a consistent response, arguing that Germany was largely to blame for the war. Her essay shows a good understanding of nationalism, militarism and imperialism as long-term causes of the war and of the role of the Kaiser in causing the conflict. Her points about nationalism were confused, but overall, she produced a clear line of argument supported by detailed knowledge.

Exploring interpretations:
Pupil E has described how some historians have interpreted the past in different ways, but she has not considered how and why historians have produced different interpretations of the causes of the First World War.

Historical enquiry:
Pupil E investigated the enquiry question set by her teacher. She drew conclusions from a range of source materials and produced a relevant, structured and detailed piece of work. Her essay could have been improved by writing an effective introduction and by making stronger connections between different causal factors.

Next steps

To progress, Pupil E needs to:

  • explain how and why people have constructed different interpretations of the past

  • explore connections between causal factors in more depth.

Why was the First World War known as The Great War?

Context

In this enquiry pupils studied in depth the significance of the First World War. They started by working in groups to investigate an aspect of the war. Each group used a wide range of sources – official reports, newspapers, films, diaries, letters, art and poetry – and gave a 10-minute presentation to the class on its findings.

Pupils then looked at a range of texts, film clips and images showing the different ways the First World War has had significance for people’s lives in the 20th and 21st centuries. They studied the life of Harry Patch, the wider social impact of the war on those who fought and on civilians, the military and political significance of the war and its impact on national memory. Pupil E researched these issues independently and then wrote an essay in response to the question ‘Why was the First World War known as The Great War?’

Pupil's work

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Essay: Why was the First World War known as The Great War?

Assessment commentary

Pupil E has investigated historical issues independently and drawn conclusions from a range of historical sources. She has constructed clear and well-structured explanations based on accurate and detailed historical knowledge.

Exploring interpretations:
Pupil E used range of criteria to make a judgement about the significance of the First World War. Her essay shows her historical knowledge of the social, military, political and cultural significance of the war.

Historical enquiry:
Pupil E researched the issue independently, using a wide range of source materials. Her essay addressed the question directly and was well structured. She supported her main points with specific knowledge, although the sections on memorials and national memory could have been further developed.

Next steps

To progress, Pupil E needs to:

  • explain how judgements about significance may vary according to the perspective of those making them

  • ensure that all aspects of an explanation are fully developed and supported by examples.

Which photographs tell us most about the Holocaust?

Context

This enquiry developed pupils’ understanding of the Holocaust in its wide temporal and geographical context, and, at the same time, helped them to engage with the experiences and attitudes of the people involved.

Pupils compared photographs of their own friends and families with those from Jewish communities across Europe in the early part of the 20th century. This gave them a sense of the richness and diversity of Jewish life in Europe. It also helped them see the value of photographs as historical evidence.

They investigated five aspects of the Holocaust: the persecution of Jews in Nazi Germany, ghettos, the Einsatzgruppen, the Final Solution and Remembrance. The teacher provided an overview of each aspect using maps, texts and film clips.

Pupils then worked as picture researchers to select photographs for an introductory panel for a touring exhibition on the Holocaust. Pupils established their own criteria for selecting photographs.

In the final part of the enquiry, pupils used their panels and the images used on the homepages of different Holocaust museums websites to explain how and why people construct different interpretations of the past.

Pupil's work

Museum display panel on different interpretations of the Holocaust

Pupil E discussed the reasons behind her choice of photographs with a friend and wrote her commentaries independently.

Assessment Commentary

Pupil E has compared and contrasted the diverse experiences, values and beliefs of people in the past. She has explained how and why people have constructed different interpretations of past events. She communicated her findings effectively, both in writing and orally.

Thinking historically:
Pupil E used her knowledge of the different aspects of the Holocaust to make a considered and careful selection of photographs. Her written commentaries and her contribution to discussions about the significance of different photographs revealed a good understanding of the diverse experiences and attitudes of people caught up in the Holocaust.

Exploring interpretations:
Pupil E made a valuable contribution to the final class discussion in which pupils considered different museum panels as interpretations of history and compared them to the images selected by real museums. She demonstrated that she could explain how and why people have constructed different interpretations of the Holocaust

Historical enquiry:
During this enquiry, Pupil E asked relevant and interesting questions about the Holocaust. She selected her photographs with care and sensitivity, considering who had taken each photographs and for what purpose.

Next steps

To progress, Pupil E needs to:

  • construct analyses of a range of historical interpretations and judgements of historical significance

  • construct more coherent, supported and wide-ranging arguments about diversity.

Overall assessment judgement

History exemplification standards level 7

Overall, Pupil E is working at level 7.

Thinking historically:
Pupil E has compared and contrasted the diverse experiences, values and beliefs of people in different periods. Her work shows that she can explain why past events occurred, analyse the importance of a variety of factors and produce clear and detailed lines of argument. Her teachers now need to provide her with opportunities to make substantiated judgements about the nature of change and continuity within and across different periods of history.

Exploring interpretations:
Pupil E has applied different criteria for making judgements about the significance of historical events. She has compared different interpretations of past events and explained how and why people have constructed different interpretations. She now needs to explore a wider range of interpretations and to explain in more depth how judgements about significance may vary according to the perspective of those making them.

Historical enquiry:
This collection of evidence shows that Pupil E can conduct historical enquiries by defining and refining her own enquiry questions and that she is beginning to evaluate this process. Pupil E has confidently pursued historical investigations. She has drawn conclusions from historical source materials, selecting and evaluating them in the light of their nature, origin and purpose. She has chosen appropriate forms and structures to communicate her findings. Her written and oral work are focused, well structured and supported by precise and detailed historical knowledge.

The extracts of pupil work below are a reminder of some of the evidence used to make these judgements.

Pupil's work

1.Examples of pupil's work [png 721kb]

Examples of pupil's work

2.Examples of pupil's work [pdf 978kb]
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Examples of pupil's work

3.Examples of pupil's work [jpg 1023kb]

Examples of pupil's work

See evidence group tabs for all examples of work

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