‘The more you know about the past, the better prepared you are for the future.’
At the Skegness Academy we believe that History is an absolutely critical subject for students to learn. History is not only the story of our predecessors- it is also our story. It helps us to make sense of the world around us and understand current developments and their context, also answer the questions of who we are, where we came from, and how did we get here. History explains the unexplainable. History gives reason to the unreasonable and this is so important for young people growing up in a world which is often confusing. History teaches so much more than just facts and dates; History is about people- it teaches us about difference and diversity. It helps us to understand how other people live, how other cultures have developed and have lived in the past and present, and its impact on Britain and the wider world.
Our aim is to help young people to shape their own views and opinions on the world but to be more tolerant and understanding of lives which are different to their own. We believe history helps to develop the next generation of thinking individuals. We believe, in a world where people have been unfairly discriminated against and persecuted for their race, identity, ethnicity, sex or sexuality, it is our duty to try and help students understand the perils of making assumptions, of listening to propaganda and in general to form more balanced opinions, rooted in facts. In the History department we have a diverse curriculum which has many crossovers and parallels with other subjects such as English, RE, Geography, Science and Economics. Our curriculum is underpinned by the National Curriculum, supported by clear skills and knowledge progression.
In an era of “fake news” and interference in communication and news from different sources, it is even more important that we teach students how to formulate independent judgments and most of all to question rather than accepting a narrative from the media. Young people spend a lot of time on their phones and on social media which potentially makes them vulnerable to half-truths or misleading information. History is an investigative discipline with a focus on critical analysis and evaluation of source material. This will support young people as they navigate through so many conflicting accounts of our society, politics and the world around them.
In History, we also strongly encourage students to consider empathy and why people in the past may have acted the way they did based on their situation. Rather than apportion blame, to understand the bigger picture. Every character from our past is potentially a complex and multidimensional personality with strengths and flaws, just as we are. History teaches students to dig deeper, ask more questions and look for contrasts and connections they never knew existed.
History also teaches a vast range of skills which are critically important in life. It teaches research, evidence gathering, explanation and description as well as higher level questioning, analysis and evaluation skills. History teaches students to scrutinise, criticise, weigh up and challenge, debate, decipher and deliberate. History empowers us to communicate and to express our feelings and views about what we discover and to ask questions and challenge accepted narratives. History encourages above all, the desire to know more. We aim to create the very best historians. We challenge students to think, act and speak like those working in the field would: to research thoroughly, to weigh-up evidence, to understand chronology, to evaluate interpretations and develop arguments. We do this by a consistent approach across the department ensuring all students develop the range of skills needed to become confident in their own opinions, make well-supported judgements and expressing them articulately using keywords from topics and academic, historical vocabulary.