Was it better ‘in the olden days’? or Is history all about inexorable progress? Pupils listen to one of the several podcasts from the recent BBC series ‘A history of Britain in numbers‘ and write a bullet point summary in groups as a basis for class discussion. Useful for interpretations, statistics and a big question. This may work best as a BYOD type lesson so you need to think about equipment (i.e. computer room with headphones).
Able pupils learning about interpretations might find this 20-minute TED talk by Chimamanda Adichie about the danger of a single story. It covers a range of ideas – from power to stereotypes and how ‘A story’ becomes ‘The story’. It could be used to open a discussion with pupils about representations and about the purpose and importance of history, about why stories matter and in what ways fiction is similar to, and different from, history.