Our department have been discussing what to do in history without levels. We waited to see what senior leadership would do. They have decided to have a common three levels of progression across school Core, Combine and Create. In addition to this they’ve given everyone a common language of learning, that’s the white column below. They had to do something to replace levels and I appreciate that Blooms has its problems but this new system makes some sense to me and is workable. Also, yes, this is in essence levels with a different name or title, but they were constrained by reporting and needed to do something.
Where it gets more interesting as a subject specialist and historian is that each department has been asked to qualify what Core, Combine and Create look like in our subject. We could split these into as many distinct areas / elements / skills as we wanted – English have about 8, Science have 3.
So during after the last three weeks we have sat down and created a progress map for history. It is still dominated by second order concepts but we feel this is the easiest way to describe progression in our subject. However, we understand that knowledge should go hand in hand with that. So we’ve separated out knowledge as a distinct element. The idea is that to progress in history you need both knowledge and understanding, e.g. if you progress in causality work this is an improvement in your understanding of causality and the knowledge you utilise with this.
This will not get rid of any of our task specific markschemes but will inform them using the language we’ve got below. Plus the progression map will act as a guide for us as teachers and the students as learners. Ultimately this was an opportunity for us as a department to discuss what it looks like to get better at history. It was a genuinely positive experience.
We would welcome any feedback: