Subject knowledge as you commute!

Update Oct 22 with a Open Spotify playlist of history teacher subject knowledge podcasts created by a University of York PGCE trainee.

This term’s Teaching History is on the topic of ‘Historians’. It’s full of ideas about ways to ensure that your students encounter historians in your History classroom. If you haven’t read your copy, and term is feeling crazy already, there’s the Bank Holiday weekend coming up soon!

History teachers need to connect with historians too and here at OBHD we are really pleased to spread the word further about a really useful piece of work to make some historical scholarship more accessible to teachers and older students.

You might know that BBC Radio 4 often has programmes about past people and events. Two lists have been compiled to make it easier to engage with them.

The first is a list of history related topics on the programme ‘In Our Time’ where Melvyn Bragg chairs discussion between leading experts. The history related programmes currently range from Domesday Book to the Opium Wars and from the Spanish Armada to penicillin. These are a great way to pick up subject knowledge and the range of debate on a topic – fast. You can find the link here: In Our Time

The second list is selected from the series ‘Great Lives’. (Usually) famous people nominate a person to discuss and there is always a historian on the programme to challenge some misconceptions. Not only are the programmes often fascinating, but the comparison between ‘Great Lives’, and the ‘Great Lives’ that are chosen, are also food for discussion. Two versions of this list are published with really good ideas as to how you can use them on this blog post: Using Great Lives as a resource to aid history teaching

This work has been made possible by history teachers working together and sharing their resources. This sort of community is nurtured by the Historical Association. If you’ve had chance to read the latest Teaching History you may remember this paragraph from the editors’ page:

“Talking of historians, and those who teach them… the editors want Teaching History to reflect the concerns of its entire readership, and to provide a showcase for the work that is being done in history teaching in schools, colleges and universities in the UK and beyond. The vast majority of contributions to this journal arise from a simple email to the editors offering a piece for contribution. No prior experience is necessary. If you have a triumph to share, a cunning plan, a piece of micro- or macro-action research which has changed your practice; if you have read and implemented some of the ideas which this journal has showcased and want to reinforce or contradict the author’s argument; if you have something which seems like a good idea but you aren’t quite sure how to proceed: please, visit www.history. and get in touch.”

Please also get in touch to contribute to this blog and to tell us how you would like it to develop so that it is as useful as possible. You can get in touch via and also via Facebook and via @histassoc.

Thanks to Will Bailey-Watson of the University of Reading for the inspiration and action to coordinate the production of these lists.

3 thoughts on “Subject knowledge as you commute!

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