Historians’ love… developing a sense of period

In history lessons teachers always go on about developing a sense of period.  That’s because it’s crucial to being a good historian, of course.  However, what is a ‘sense of period’?  Richard Kennett has been doing some great thinking on this and you can read more at his site: http://radicalhistory.co.uk/?page_id=158

If you have a sense of period you have a (an) : 

  • Sense of what a time period looked like
  • Sense of the values and beliefs of a time period
  • Sense of the differences within time periods
  • Ability to place periods in a wider historical context
  • Sense of the physical and mental features of periods
  • Sense of the general trends in a period
  • Sense of what made a time period distinct
  • Ability to make links across and between periods
  • Ability to identify the key features of a time period

There are lots of things you can do to build your sense of period – see Rich’s site.  This year’s start of the year historical thinking display will be on the topic of ‘sense of period’.  See it in the actual and newly redecorated (sic!) History Room at the start of term!


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