History is a compelling story, capable of engaging people of all ages and interests. Above all; however, history is an intellectual and analytical subject which demands that students identify, analyse, and evaluate evidence, and reach independent judgements in answer to complex questions, all the while communicating coherently and convincingly.
The Prep and Middle School study a range of topics from the Roman Empire to post-World War II Britain, before being introduced to wider British and World history in senior school. British history is treated more or less chronologically from the Industrial Revolution onwards, while world history focuses on key turning points such as the causes of World Wars I and II, the Russian Revolution, and the German Reformation.
At all stages, discussion and debate are strongly encouraged during lessons, and students are invited to explore and communicate their understanding of history in many ways. The subject is also complemented by trips to places as diverse as the National Museum of Wales at St Fagan’s, the battlefield at Bosworth, the Commandery at Worcester, Ironbridge, the Ypres Salient and, in the Sixth Form, cultural centres such as London, Berlin, Rome and Florence.
Geography is a dynamic, multi-faceted subject, which surrounds you and your thoughts on a daily basis. It is constantly in the news; the weather, natural hazards, tourism, malnutrition, disappearing fragile ecosystems, globalisation, fair trade and, increasingly, the need to develop sustainable food and energy supplies.
In order to have some understanding of these global features and events, the study of the interaction of physical, human and environmental geography is a huge asset. Knowledge of the dynamics of plate tectonics, rock structure, river, glacial, coastal and desert features and processes, the weather and atmospheric systems will, or should, help humans make informed decisions when utilising the landscape to produce food, exploit resources and build settlements.
Environmental geography is a relatively new component to the subject that has evolved because we have failed to understand the impact that human actions are having upon both the environment and cultural development.
Geography students have many opportunities to take part in field trips to local settlements, rivers, glaciated areas, farms and ecosystems. At GCSE and A Level, trips to Field Study Centres in Shropshire and Snowdonia, as well as cultural trips to London, Florence, and Rome provides further understanding of the interaction between physical, human, and environmental geography.
The Religious Studies Department at Lucton aims to teach students how people of faith approach the key issues of life. The course encourages pupils to draw on their own life experiences, as well as the teachings of their own and other faiths, to benefit them throughout their lives. All students take the subject from Reception to Year 9, and begin by learning the stories of Christianity, before covering the teachings and traditions of other major religions of the world. By Year 9, pupils have moved on to begin examining basic religious philosophy and ethics.
For students wishing to go further, the GCSE course follows the OCR examination syllabus as either a “Short Course” (equivalent to half a GCSE) or the “Full Course”. This fascinating course studies the philosophy and ethics of Christianity and one other major faith. The AS and A2 courses also follow the OCR examination syllabus. The AS continues on from the GCSE; however, the A Level course can be followed without experience of the GCSE.
The department aims to make the study of religion fun, interesting, and rewarding and the classroom is well-equipped with audio visual equipment and religious artefacts to enable a multi-sensory approach to what remains a challenging and fascinating field of study.
Economics is a study of the financial, cultural, and political conditions of the world in which we live, and the relationships between them on both a micro and macro level.
Students study local, national, and international issues in great depth, gaining new perspectives and insights on topics as varied as the stock market, the labour market, and international trade. Students become adept at being able to identify, analyse, and evaluate data in order to answer complex questions and at all stages, discussion and debate are strongly encouraged during the lesson.
The subject is further enlightened by a diverse programme of trips and visits. In recent years this has included Worcester Rugby Club, a fruit growing co-operative in Leominster and, in the Sixth Form, cultural centres such as London, to visit the Bank of England Museum and the London School of Economics.
Personal & Social Studies
The PSE syllabus operates from the beginning of Key Stage I until the top end of Key Stage IV. In the early years, children cover topics such as Making Choices and Following Rules. As they move up the school, they learn to consider healthy lifestyles and to appreciate that people are different. The Middle School curriculum includes Bullying, Government of the UK, and SRE (Sex and Relationship Education.) In the Senior School, students cover issue including Drugs, The Media, and Rights & Responsibilities.
Beyond the formal curriculum, PSE can help cadets in the CCF and Sixth Form students as they work towards their Extended Project (EPQ) and prepare their UCAS Personal Statements. Common threads throughout the Key Stages include concepts of Citizenship, the Economy, SRE and Study Skills. In addition, students gain a valuable insight into “Thinking Skills”, i.e. skills that will serve them well in their academic studies as well as in life in general.
Psychology is a fascinating subject which allows for the development of broader thinking skills with regards to different theories and approaches. The evolutionary perspective, for example, examines the role of our innate drive to survive as a species and how this manifests itself on our current behaviour. Alternatively, the psychodynamic approach explores the role of the unconscious and how our childhood experiences impact on our adult behaviour.
At Lucton, we are fortunate in having the Nursery as a site for the observation of childhood development and behaviour; both aspects of A Level study. We also have guest speakers and students conduct research using members of the school population as their participants!
Psychology is immediately relevant to students’ own experiences and much of the classwork is discussion-based. At A Level, simply learning theories and concepts is insufficient and must be coupled with the evaluation and application of knowledge to real-life scenarios.
Psychology is a useful subject to study for a variety of careers, from teaching to advertising, from sports coaching to nursing. At a minimum, the study of psychology improves our social functioning by enabling us to understand how both we and others tick.