Information for schools
We run a variety of activities for schools and are always happy to discuss your ideas for your students. For more information
about any of the events and activities listed below, please contact us.
Events and activities for secondary schools and sixth form providers
Visits to your school or our campus
You are welcome to arrange a visit for your GCSE or A-level students to our campus. You could:
- attend an event, either half-day (lecture/workshop or mini-conference) of full-day
- come to a more general talk about studying history at university and/or at Essex
We can also arrange for a member of our Department to visit your school and speak to your students. They can give a subject-specific
talk and/or a more general talk about studying history at university. This could be related to your syllabus or be a stand-alone lecture
to enthuse pupils about studying history.
Bridges to history and employment project
We are currently involved in a joint project with Canterbury Christ Church, Kent, funded by the Higher Education Academy, which aims to
make the transition from secondary education to university as smooth as possible. This is to enable history students to reach their full
potential in higher education and ensure they are well-equipped for the world of work.
The project is currently in an initial fact-finding phase, involving visits to local Essex schools and colleges where A-level history is
taught, to survey the approaches to teaching the subject. Building on this first phase, we plan to develop a network of partners in Kent and
Essex (including universities, schools, colleges, employers and local authorities) amongst whom good practice and information about history
teaching and history skills can be shared. The Project Co-ordinator, Matthew Cook, is visiting schools to find out more about what you teach
and how you teach it by talking to A-level history teachers and pupils. If you are interested in being involved in this project, please
contact us using the details at the top of this page.
Dora Love Prize
Workshops are held, usually in September, for Key Stage 2/3 and A-level students who want to become involved in the
Dora Love Prize. Prizes
are awarded during Holocaust Memorial Week.
'My Magna Carta'; essay competition now open
'My Magna Carta'; is an international creative essay competition for 11 to 18 year olds to celebrate the
800th anniversary of the sealing of Magna Carta. Young people in the UK and across the English Speaking Union’s
member countries in the Commonwealth and across the world are invited to create their very own Magna Carta
for the 21st century. The competition is also open to entrants from other Commonwealth countries.
Events and activities for primary schools
Our award-winning History First team, all members of our Department's
undertake voluntary work in local primary schools. They teach children about history, inspiring them with a range of diverse
themes (from espionage over pirates to the Wild West) and creative ways of learning.
History resources for schools
We have a number of resource packs with primary sources, lessons plans and worksheets available online.
The Marks Hall Estate
These resource packs for primary
and secondary teachers were created
by Emma Paulus. Emma holds a History MA from the University of Essex and is a qualified History Teacher. She
completed her PGCE in Cumbria and her NQT year at a school in Redbridge. The resources have been designed to fit
in with the 2014 new National Curriculum for History.
The History of Witchcraft (KS2 and KS3)
Working with history and drama student volunteers from the University of
Essex in 2013, Professor Alison Rowlands, our expert on early modern Germany
and the history of witchcraft, designed and ran workshops for local primary
and secondary schools. All the resources used have since been uploaded onto
the tesconnect website. This website can
be used at no cost after you have registered. The two workshops available are
described briefly below; please register with tesconnect and follow the links
given to access/download the resources.
17th-century witch-finders: Heroes or villains? (KS2, Year 6)
Were the infamous 17th-century Witch-Finders Matthew Hopkins and
John Stearne ‘heroes’ or ‘villains’? Using creative learning activities and
historical sources, these 4 workshops enable KS2 (Year 6) students to reach
their own answer to this question, by looking at the East Anglian
Witch-Hunts of 1645-7 from a variety of different 17th-century perspectives.
Each Workshop is based on a PowerPoint presentation and detailed lesson plan
and is designed to run for c. 80 minutes of teaching time; additional
handouts are provided for workshops 1 and 3.
Encounters with the witch-finders (KS3, Year 8 or 9)
This workshop for KS3 students (Year 8 or 9) helps them understand
the role that the witch-finders Matthew Hopkins and John Stearne played in
the East Anglian witch-hunts of 1645-7. It gives students practice in
analysing primary source evidence from the period, and encourages them to
empathise with the people involved in the witch-hunts by means of role-play.
It is structured by a PowerPoint presentation and lesson plan, which frame
the group analysis of case-studies (five case-studies are provided) and
role-play activity (see role-play handout). It can be run over one or
extended to two teaching hours.
Work placements for Year 10 students
Our department has a limited number of places for Year 10 work experience placements.