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Help! - Year 7 Hums course


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#1 dmason

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 01:20 PM

As a new Head of Humanities I have been asked to run a new year 7 course in Humanities. It needs to include Hist, Geog and RE.

 

Any ideas for the units of work or progression plans would be really useful as i attempt after half term to persuade the heads of dept this is a good idea!!

 

Thanks



#2 Simon Ross

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 09:06 AM

I have experienced both a cross curricular Humanities and a subject led approach to Key Stage 3. Particularly with students who have struggled at Primary school, there can be a benefit to a thematic Humanities approach in Year 7 as a form of transition to the secondary curriculum. It allows a bigger story for the students to connect with, more project based learning and can also provide more continuity if one class teacher covers each subject strand. However, it can be very difficult to make good progress in the individual concepts and processes of each subject, particularly if students are already working at Level 4/5.  

 

Teaching thematically requires a great deal of planning to make it effective. There also needs to be a strong link between the subjects either as a narrative or concepts  or processes. Examples of things that I have found worked well are:

 

narrative - Pompeii, volcanoes, Roman Gods, early Christianity and modern beliefs

concepts - industrialisation and settlement

processes - using evidence to explain different views

 

Very often the pressure to teach thematically comes from SLT as a response to student disengagement with the subjects, or simply as a way of easing a timetabling issue. What I think SLT fail to appreciate, is that when a thematic approach is not properly planned it is considerably more prone to disengage students.  As soon as you find yourself asking how you can make something 'fit into the theme', you can guarantee that it won't be long before the students are asking 'why are we doing this, I though we were looking at X'! As a result, you may wish to teach your Year 7 Humanities course as separate subject units, or perhaps a mixture of the two.



#3 ewallace

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 06:56 PM

We teach Humanities in Year 7. We start off with a skills unit where students look at the key skills needed for each of the 3 areas. Our second unit is 'Journeys' where we look at the students own personal journeys, along with immigration/migration, movement to the UK and a brief intro to pilgrimage etc. We then move onto 'Rotten Romans and Violent Volcanoes' - pretty much what it says on the box but we also look at Roman Gods and the move to Christianity etc. Fourth, we look at 'Measly Middle Ages'. This is all the usual topics for History, but we also examine settlement, and again the importance of religion in the Middle Ages. Finally we look at Christendom, Pilgrimage and Crusades - again as it says on the box, but we also examine the landscape of Jerusaleum and deserts, the need for adaptation etc. We have worked hard to ensure that we try to cover all subjects fairly, although some units may be more heavily based on a particular subject e.g. Measly Middle Ages. We have also made assessment sheets, which have all the NC targets for the units that students will be working towards which the can self assess once they complete their meet my target activities. I would be happy to send you one of our units and assessment sheets if you would like?






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