History teaching resources on interpretation

If History is like ‘looking through a glass, darkly’, why do historians see the past so differently? Check out these resources to help your students understand the history of History.

Looking for ideas to approach the key concept of interpretation? Maybe some of these will provide the inspiration you're looking for!

Please log in or join us to access our resources.


Has history treated Charles I badly?New!
This resource is designed to follow detailed work on the civil  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) Preview
KS3 | Interpretation | Early Modern period: 1500-1750 | Published: 26/06/2017 | From the resource collection(s): The English Civil War
Download documentDownload documentDownload Has history treated Charles I badly? in PDF format
Who should have the Koh-i-Noor?New!
Students look at the wider debate surrounding the legacy of the  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) Preview
KS3 | Interpretation | Industrial Age: 1750-1900 | Areas | Published: 26/06/2017 | From the resource collection(s): British Empire | The History of India
Download documentDownload Who should have the Koh-i-Noor? in PDF format
Changing interpretations of Nazism
A great selection of challenging primary and secondary sources  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) 1 teacher has reviewed this resource(1)Preview
KS4 KS5 | Depth studies | Interpretation | Published: 10/10/2016 | From the resource collection(s): Germany | Historiography | Nazi Germany
Download documentDownload Changing interpretations of Nazism  in PDF format
Why was there a Revolution in France? Historiography
A challenging resource which gets students to engage with differing  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) Preview
KS3 | Interpretation | Published: 12/09/2016 | From the resource collection(s): French Revolution | Historiography
Download documentDownload Why was there a Revolution in France? Historiography in PDF format
Robespierre: Hero or Villain?
Starting with an extract from an History Today article, students  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) Preview
KS3 | Communicating about the past | Interpretation | Published: 01/08/2016 | From the resource collection(s): French Revolution
Download documentDownload Robespierre: Hero or Villain? in PDF format
Norman England: Interpretation question practice
Students use an example answer and mark scheme to analyse and  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) Preview
KS4 | British studies | Interpretation | The Medieval period: 1000-1500 | Published: 20/06/2016 | From the resource collection(s): Anglo-Saxon and Norman England | Power and conflict in the Medieval period
AQA (cross-site)
Download documentDownload Norman England: Interpretation question practice in PDF format
Representations of Lincoln and the American Civil War
This resource explores differing views of Lincoln as an individual  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) Preview
KS4 | Depth studies | Interpretation | Industrial Age: 1750-1900 | Published: 12/04/2016 | From the resource collection(s): 19th century America | The American Civil War
AQA (cross-site)
Download documentDownload Representations of Lincoln and the American Civil War in PDF format
How do historians try to persuade us that their arguments are convincing?
A template resource which helps students to analyse historians'  … read more
3 teachers love this resource (3) Preview
KS5 | Interpretation | Published: 17/12/2015 | From the resource collection(s): Teaching templates and tools
Download documentDownload How do historians try to persuade us that their arguments are convincing? in PDF format
Why did Northumberland’s coup of 1553 fail?
Students use a chronology of the events of the coup to plot a  … read more
1 teacher loves this resource (1) Preview
KS5 | Interpretation | Published: 17/11/2015 | From the resource collection(s): The Early Tudors
Download documentDownload Why did Northumberland’s coup of 1553 fail? in PDF format
Was J.A.R. Marriott right about the British in India?
An interpretations activity in which students use evidence to  … read more
1 teacher loves this resource (1) Preview
KS3 | Interpretation | Published: 07/07/2015 | From the resource collection(s): British Empire
Download Was J.A.R. Marriott right about the British in India? in Word formatDownload Was J.A.R. Marriott right about the British in India? in PDF format
Why was the slave trade abolished?
A card sort in which student categorise the reasons for abolition.  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) Preview
KS3 | Cause and consequence | Interpretation | Published: 17/03/2015 | From the resource collection(s): The Transatlantic Slave Trade
Download Why was the slave trade abolished? in Word formatDownload Why was the slave trade abolished? in Word formatDownload documentDownload Why was the slave trade abolished? in PDF formatDownload Why was the slave trade abolished? in PDF formatDownload Why was the slave trade abolished? in PDF format
Interpretations: causes of the Dutch Revolt
Students study the interpretations of leading historians to evaluate  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) Preview
KS5 | Interpretation | Early Modern period: 1500-1750Published: 25/11/2014 | 
Download Interpretations: causes of the Dutch Revolt in Word formatDownload Interpretations: causes of the Dutch Revolt in PDF format
A new interpretation of Oliver Cromwell: create a film pitch
Students create a storyboard and poster for a new film about  … read more
1 teacher loves this resource (1) Preview
KS3 | Interpretation | Published: 06/05/2014 | From the resource collection(s): Power and conflict in the Early Modern Period
Download A new interpretation of Oliver Cromwell: create a film pitch in Word formatDownload A new interpretation of Oliver Cromwell: create a film pitch in PDF format
Has History judged King John fairly?
A sequence of suggested activities in which students use contemporary  … read more
2 teachers love this resource (2) Preview
KS3 | Interpretation | The Medieval period: 1000-1500 | Published: 12/11/2013 | From the resource collection(s): Power and conflict in the Medieval period
Download Has History judged King John fairly? in Word formatDownload Has History judged King John fairly? in PDF format
The measly Middle Ages?
Students explore a range of differentiated sources to decide  … read more
7 teachers love this resource (7) Preview
KS3 | Interpretation | The Medieval period: 1000-1500 | Published: 05/11/2013 | From the resource collection(s): Society in the Medieval period
Download The measly Middle Ages? in Word formatDownload The measly Middle Ages? in PDF formatDownload The measly Middle Ages? in PDF format
Fact or opinion? Stalin’s Russia
Students use an historian's interpretation of Stalin's Russia  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) Preview
KS3 KS4 | Depth studies | Interpretation | Modern World: 1900-present | Published: 25/09/2013 | From the resource collection(s): Russia | Stalin's Russia
Download Fact or opinion? Stalin’s Russia in Word formatDownload Fact or opinion? Stalin’s Russia in PDF format
Why can’t historians agree on who caused the First World War?
A crafty take on the origins of WWI! Coloured glasses or 'perspectacles'  … read more
4 teachers love this resource (4) 2 teachers have reviewed this resource(2)Preview
KS3 | Interpretation | Modern World: 1900-present | Published: 04/09/2013 | From the resource collection(s): First World War
Download Why can’t historians agree on who caused the First World War? in Word formatDownload Why can’t historians agree on who caused the First World War? in PDF format
Were highwaymen ‘gentlemen of the road’ or violent thugs?
A source based activity for the GCSE Crime & Punishment course.  … read more
2 teachers love this resource (2) 1 teacher has reviewed this resource(1)Preview
KS3 KS4 | Interpretation | Thematic studies | Using evidence | Early Modern period: 1500-1750 | Published: 28/06/2013 | From the resource collection(s): Crime and punishment
Download Were highwaymen ‘gentlemen of the road’ or violent thugs? in Word formatDownload Were highwaymen ‘gentlemen of the road’ or violent thugs? in PDF formatDownload Were highwaymen ‘gentlemen of the road’ or violent thugs? in PDF format
Interpretations of Nazi Germany - are you an intentionalist or a functionalist?
A quick and interesting introduction to one of the major historiographical  … read more
1 teacher loves this resource (1) 1 teacher has reviewed this resource(1)Preview
KS5 | Interpretation | Modern World: 1900-present | Published: 10/04/2013 | From the resource collection(s): Nazi Germany
Download Interpretations of Nazi Germany - are you an intentionalist or a functionalist? in Word formatDownload documentDownload Interpretations of Nazi Germany - are you an intentionalist or a functionalist? in PDF format
How did women win the vote?
A series of source based tasks which encourage students to engage  … read more
3 teachers love this resource (3) 2 teachers have reviewed this resource(2)Preview
KS3 KS4 | Interpretation | Thematic studies | Modern World: 1900-present | Published: 28/03/2013 | From the resource collection(s): 20th century Britain | Power: monarchy and democracy | Women's suffrage
Download How did women win the vote? in Word formatDownload documentDownload How did women win the vote? in PDF formatDownload How did women win the vote? in PDF format
Should we feel proud of the British Empire?
An interpretations activity on the British Empire which gives  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) Preview
KS3 | Interpretation | Industrial Age: 1750-1900 | Modern World: 1900-present | Published: 14/02/2013 | From the resource collection(s): British Empire
Download Should we feel proud of the British Empire? in Word formatDownload Should we feel proud of the British Empire? in PDF format
To what extent did Fascist Italy become a totalitarian state?
A card sorting activity to identify successes and failures in  … read more
2 teachers love this resource (2) 1 teacher has reviewed this resource(1)Preview
KS5 | Interpretation | Published: 19/12/2012 | From the resource collection(s): Fascist Italy
Download To what extent did Fascist Italy become a totalitarian state? in Word formatDownload To what extent did Fascist Italy become a totalitarian state? in PDF format
Crusaders – the movie!
A fun task in which students explore some of the positive and  … read more
2 teachers love this resource (2) Preview
KS3 | Interpretation | The Medieval period: 1000-1500 | Published: 18/07/2012 | From the resource collection(s): Power and conflict in the Medieval period
Download Crusaders – the movie! in Word formatDownload Crusaders – the movie! in PDF format
Was appeasement the right way forward?
A grid which could be used as a card sorting activity to examine  … read more
3 teachers love this resource (3) 2 teachers have reviewed this resource(2)Preview
KS3 KS4 | Interpretation | Modern World studies | Modern World: 1900-present | Published: 18/07/2012 | From the resource collection(s): Inter-War
Download Was appeasement the right way forward? in Word formatDownload Was appeasement the right way forward? in PDF format
Teaching historiography at KS5
A range of exciting suggestions and approaches to teaching historiography.  … read more
0 teachers love this resource (0) Preview
KS5 | Interpretation | Published: 18/07/2012 | From the resource collection(s): Historiography
Download Teaching historiography at KS5 in Word formatDownload Teaching historiography at KS5 in PDF format
Did Mary I deserve to be called 'Bloody Mary'?
A flexible card sorting activity to help students answer this  … read more
1 teacher loves this resource (1) 2 teachers have reviewed this resource(2)Preview
KS3 | Communicating about the past | Interpretation | Early Modern period: 1500-1750 | Published: 18/07/2012 | From the resource collection(s): Power and conflict in the Early Modern Period
Download Did Mary I deserve to be called 'Bloody Mary'? in Word formatDownload Did Mary I deserve to be called 'Bloody Mary'? in PDF format
The Big Debate: The Home Guard in World War 2
An exercise which looks at two historians' interpretations of  … read more
3 teachers love this resource (3) Preview
KS3 | Interpretation | Modern World: 1900-present | Published: 18/07/2012 | From the resource collection(s): Second World War
Download The Big Debate: The Home Guard in World War 2 in Word formatDownload documentDownload The Big Debate: The Home Guard in World War 2 in PDF format

We use cookies to deliver functionality and provide you with a better service. By continuing to browse our site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Find out more.

Don't show this message again.