Global Perspectives: GoSchool’s Multicultural Approach to History

GoSchool prides itself on its relevance to the modern world, ensuring that our students can play full and active roles as 21st century global citizens. This requires the crafting of a curriculum that focuses on the inculcation of a number of key dispositions, promoting a genuinely holistic education as it does.

We are fortunate in having full accreditation to offer the Cambridge and Pearson Edexcel programmes at GoSchool, both highly acclaimed international examination boards, covering us from Grade 6 to Grade 12.The skills certainly required of our young people include an awareness of cultural context.

GoSchool emphasises this by embedding such values into our curriculum planning and the study of History is the perfect vehicle to attain this goal. GoSchool offers History as a distinct area of the curriculum to all ages. We insist on studying History in terms of its significant concepts, processes and skills as opposed to the regurgitation of content which may be interesting but possibly irrelevant. Learning pathways ensure we study a range of topics including the investigation of a range of other cultural perspectives. Units on offer include in-depth investigations of Indian history alongside the history of other important nations including the United Kingdom, Germany, Russia and the United States of America. In all cases, we take a look at the nature of culture from that particular location. Similarly, we examine the dynamic nature of events which have an impact on the whole world, including war and economic/cultural exchange. Students are then clearly able to highlight points of comparison between cultures whilst also identify any particular points of contrast. In all cases, cultural superiority/inferiority is avoided at all costs.

To us, we feel that it is important to approach the study of history in a manner which emphasises the unique characteristics of culture, including a review of the nuances of that particular topic. This requires us to explore such avenues in a thematic fashion, ensuring that we look for commonalities as a way of building bridges, not burning them. Students are expected to approach their history lessons with an enquiring mind, using the opportunities afforded to them by wider reading and pursuing of extended research. History is becoming an increasingly popular subject internationally and the approach outlined above highlights the significant advantages of taking this subject going forward. It prepares our students for immersion into the global arena and allows them to interact with others in a culturally sensitive fashion. Our starting point must always be a recognition of the importance of our cultural roots. If we are able, at least, to show an awareness of our own culture, we can clearly acknowledge the importance of the cultural roots of other nations. We usually discover that in fact there are many more points of comparison than contrast, thus enabling us to become more empathetic to others and create a world based on harmony as opposed to discord. 

Written by Mr. Hywel Bennett – Academic Director, GoSchool [BA (Hons), PGCE, MA Ed]