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School group at Bosworth battlefield
Key Stage Three



Chronological understanding
Pupils should be taught to:

1a.  recognise and make appropriate use of dates, vocabulary and conventions that describe historical periods and the passing of time.

Battles featured in the Battlefields Trust’s resource-centre are arranged both chronologically and alphabetically. Battles are also grouped into Campaigns.

Knowledge and understanding of events, people and changes in the past
Pupils should be taught:

2a. to describe and analyse the relationships between the characteristic features of the periods and societies studied including the experiences and range of ideas, beliefs and attitudes of men, women and children in the past
Battlefields are the places where the significant rival values, ideas and beliefs of our ancestors were fought over. It is through studying the causes of a battle that children can meaningfully encounter for the first time significant concepts associated with historical study – revolution, monarchy, democracy, government, parliament, religion, aristocracy and power, to name but a few.

2b. about the social, cultural, religious and ethnic diversity of the societies studied, both in Britain and the wider world

2c. to analyse and explain the reasons for, and results of, the historical events, situations and changes in the periods studied

Cause and consequence are concepts which can be taught effectively through the study of battles, campaigns and wars. The battle pages on this website explain both the causes and consequences of the featured battles.

2d. to identify trends, both within and across different periods, and links between local, British, European and world history

A battle local to your school provides an excellent opportunity to link those events with the wider, national situation. Almost all towns and villages in this country have a site where a Civil War skirmish took place, for example. Many children believe that important and exciting historical events always happened elsewhere.

2e. to consider the significance of the main events, people and changes studied.

The importance of a local battle to the outcome of a war is something which could be debated, comparing that with other battles and factors.

Historical interpretation
Pupils should be taught:

3a. how and why historical events, people, situations and changes have been interpreted in different ways

3b. to evaluate interpretations.
Battles are interpreted in many different ways, many of which can be utilised for schools’ use. Contrasting written accounts, perhaps from eye-witnesses from both sides, or by historians with differing sympathies, are useful ways for pupils to understand why and how interpretations vary. Pictures and films offer further examples. Museum displays and interpretation panels on battlefields provide specific interpretations of the events and landscape relating to battles. Particularly lively, memorable and informative interpretations are offered by various re-enactment and living history groups.

Historical enquiry
Pupils should be taught to:

4a. identify, select and use a range of appropriate sources of information including oral accounts, documents, printed sources, the media, artefacts, pictures, photographs, music, museums, buildings and sites, and ICT-based sources as a basis for independent historical enquiries.

4b. evaluate the sources used, select and record information relevant to the enquiry and reach conclusions.
The battle pages of this website contain a wide range of sources relating to battlefields, including photographs of the sites and battle-related artefacts, maps, aerial photographs and other illustrations.

Organisation and communication
Pupils should be taught to:

5a. recall, prioritise and select historical information

5b. accurately select and use chronological conventions and historical vocabulary appropriate to the periods studied to organise historical information

5c. communicate their knowledge and understanding of history, using a range of techniques, including spoken language, structured narratives, substantiated explanations and the use of ICT.


6. During the key stage, pupils should be taught the knowledge, skills and understanding through three British studies, a European study and to world studies.

In their study of local, British, European and world history
pupils should be taught about:

7a. significant events, people and changes from the recent and more distant past

7b. history from a variety of perspectives including political, religious, social, cultural, aesthetic, economic, technological and scientific

7c. aspects of the histories of England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales where appropriate

7d. the history of Britain in its European and wider world context

7e. some aspects in overview and others in depth.

Britain 1066-1500

8. A study of major features of Britain’s medieval past: the development of the monarchy, and significant events and characteristic features of the lives of people living throughout the British Isles, including the local area if appropriate.
Study is encouraged of ‘the development of the monarchy and significant events’, with the Norman Conquest, including the Battle of Hastings and the Wars of the Roses being highlighted in the National Curriculum document as examples. Other, local examples may also be appropriate, perhaps where relating to Matilda and Stephen or the Peasants’ Revolt.

Britain 1500-1750

9. A study of crowns, parliaments and people: the major political, religious and social changes affecting people throughout the British Isles, including the local area if appropriate.
The Civil Wars, the Commonwealth, the Glorious Revolution and the Stuart/Jacobite rebellions are topics rich in military history and with strong relevance to ‘political and religious changes’. Opportunities abound for local studies. To see those suggested, including schemes of work, at the dfes site CLICK HERE. The suggested tasks on why Parliament won the battle of Naseby, using ICT, could easily be adapted for any battle, and could include study of the landscape/terrain as a factor in helping to explain victory or defeat.

Britain 1750-1900

10. A study of how expansion of trade and colonisation, industrialisation and political changes affected the United Kingdom, including the local area.

A European study before 1914

11. A study of a significant period or event in the prehistory or history of Europe.

A world study before 1900

12. A study of the cultures, beliefs and achievements of an African, American, Asian or Australasian society of the past (other than those included in the programme of study for key stage 2).

A world study after 1900

13. A study of some of the significant individuals, events and developments from across the twentieth century, including the two World Wars, the Holocaust, the Cold War, and their impact on Britain, Europe and the wider world.

This information about the National Curriculum is drawn from but with the notes in italics added by the Battlefields Trust.


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