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2 March 2018

Year 7: How did William keep control?

This is an overview´╗┐ lesson which will establish the 'big picture' for a unit of work on the significance of the Norman invasion.  I'd like my students to leave the lesson having some understanding of William's position immediately after the Battle of Hastings in 1066 and knowledge of the methods used by the Normans to control England.  We're also going to revisit another teaching point from earlier this year - namely that historians may have different interpretations and that these are based on evidence.

Firstly, I'll flag up the 'big ideas' in the lesson.  This is something which has been introduced across my school to give a degree of consistency across lessons & subject areas, particularly in terms of learning objectives and lesson outcomes.

As this is the first lesson of a new unit of work, students will complete their self-assessment of the previous unit of work and an initial assessment of their position regarding the new unit of work.

Now I'll talk to students about King William I's reign.  This is my hook - I'm going to use some exciting & entertaining stories from his reign to encourage students to buy into the lesson.

Some teacher exposition here.  I'll set out four key problems facing William in maintaining control of England.  Students will then create their own explanation.

Students will then do a reading task.  To help them process what they are reading, they will allocate each of William's solutions to one or more of his problems.  There will be some class discussion after this about what William did and why it was important in maintaining Norman control.  At this point, students are gaining an overview of Norman methods of control - we'll revisit some of the key ones in greater depth in subsequent lessons.

Finally we will recap what an interpretation is and how historians use evidence to create their interpretations.  I'll give students four different interpretations of William's reign to look at and ask them to identify specific evidence on which these interpretations might be based.

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