Mural in Northern Ireland

This is the history teaching website of me, Ed Podesta.  I’m a history teacher.  I worked at Little Heath School in Reading for most of my teaching career.  Taking one year off to be a PGCE tutor at the University of Oxford.  For three years I was head of the History Department at Little Heath School, as well as a whole school CPD co-ordinator and chair of the grandly titled ‘Curriculum Reform Group’.  I have also briefly worked in the independent sector, which was fascinating, very informative and rather frustratingly interfered with many of my dearly held prejudices against that sector.

I have also done some work for the BBC as an occasional consultant on internet related history teaching stuff.  I have done bits and bobs for BECTA, PiXL, the SSAT (for whom I was a Lead Practitioner 2008-9) and the Historical Association.   Recently I have worked with OCR on their new GCSE specification.

I’ve done some textbook writing too, including a book on the Unification of Italy, which I wrote with a colleague, based (loosely) on my podcasts at www.onedamnthing.org.uk/italy.  My ‘Restoration’ textbook on the AQA British Depth Study of that name is also in print (actually re-printed now!).  I’ve written sections of other textbooks on new GCSE specifications for AQA and Edexcel.

I have an MSc in Educational Research Methods from the University of Leeds.  I’m keen to continue working as a practitioner-researcher.  Since 2015 I’ve been working at Leeds Trinity University, at first as a lecturer on the Schools Direct PGCE at Dixons City Academy and since 2016 as the Coordinator for the Provider-Led PGCE at the University.  Since 2017 I have been Academic Group Lead for Post Grad ITE which means I oversee the work of the PG ITE team.

Since I arrived in the PGCE team we have re-designed the course to make use of the lessons we have learned as a provider from working closely with school partners in the construction and smooth running of Schools Direct courses.  Our course has a strong ethic of support for trainees in the first months of induction into their new professional life, but lots of opportunities to learn from placement in schools.

This site is for history teachers, to help them to think about and plan their history teaching, as it seems to me that the best history lessons or series of lessons are often those that have been thought about very carefully.

I would like this site to be slightly different from those excellent sites that cater for us history teachers who want one off resources, or groups of resources. I’m thinking particularly of Andrew Field’s legendary site, or the burgeoning www.historyshareforum.com run by Doug Belshaw. I would like it to become, eventually, a place where there are larger resources and longer articles made by history teachers. As an excellent example, I would draw your attention to this piece, written by Dave Stacey, which discusses how history departments could re-vamp their KS3 schemes of work.  If you’d like to contribute something then you’d be very very welcome!  Let me know by getting in touch!

When I first had the idea for this site I envisaged it as a wiki. I asked for help and got some great contributions, from Doug, but especially Dave Stacey. The wiki didn’t quite work out – to be honest the programming side of it was beyond me – so I’ll be transferring the information posted there to this site as time goes on. I realise that this site has probably got to become useful in its own right before lots of people volunteer to join in and contribute their material. In the meantime if you do find something useful, or something useless, please do let me know by posting a comment in the relevant section.


3 thoughts on “About

  1. Ed, I was at your talk in Manchester on Monday 16th November and you had some great sentences regarding analysis. I was wondering if I could have a copy please?

  2. Hi Mr Podesta,
    You may not remember me, but I was in your history class during your last year at Little Heath. I have to say, you inspired me during my time there, so apologies for doing so in such a public forum, but I wanted to notify you that I have attained my BA in History, and am enrolling in a Master of Teaching (Secondary) here in Australia.
    I have many fond memories of your lessons, and they have probably inspired my love of history and my desire to teach it to others.
    I hope this message finds you well,
    Best regards,
    Ben F

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