Active Learning on

Raising Attainment and Visible Learning

The articles in this section explore a number of principles which underpin how we plan the history curriculum and how we teach students in the classroom.

The articles have been written by Dale Banham and myself and are largely based on Dale’s work with his students, initially as head of department and latterly as Deputy Head with responsibility for teaching and learning in his school in Ipswich where he also continues to teach history from KS3 to A level. In addition Dale also spent several years as Humanities adviser for Suffolk and has extensive experience of running CPD courses around the country.

Although geographically distant, we have been working together very creatively and enjoyably since 2000 on a range of textbooks, articles and CPD sessions and it’s therefore very satisfying to continue this collaboration through the website.



Strategies for helping students with three steps to better communication:

• how to remember

• how to identify and construct arguments

• how to communicate


Visible Learning: Key Principles

Key principles (plus numerous examples) of how to improve attainment by making explicit the processes of studying and writing history.


Key Principles for teaching
Thematic Studies at GCSE

Core strategies for planning and teaching Thematic studies, designed to tackle the problems students and teachers regularly face.


Independent Learning at A Level

Written a while ago but very much linked to the ideas in the rest of this section of the site.


Introduction: Starting Points

The key ideas and principles which underpin the approaches we'll be discussing in this section on raising attainment.


Planning principles for teaching Depth and Period Studies

Strategies for planning and teaching periods in depth at both GCSE and A level.


Feedback, marking and
how they can improve learning

Detailed guidance and examples exploring six stages of feedback, all aimed at improving students’ ability to learn.



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