Schools blasted for Yo! Sushi take on history
Lessons put too much focus on the effects of war in shaping Britain's identity, claim experts
Gaby Hinsliff, political editor
Sunday December 18, 2005
History teaching in schools has become obsessed with the Second World War, at the expense of understanding other events that shaped Britain's national identity, an expert report warns.
Pupils are getting a 'Yo! Sushi experience of historical understanding', sampling a series of short, unconnected modules on detailed issues but unable to connect them into a broader picture, according to the Labour MP Gordon Marsden, who heads an informal advisory group on history teaching for the Department for Education and Skills.
Marsden said the fascination with genealogy and TV programmes such as Who Do You Think You Are?, in which celebrities traced their family trees, showed a keen national interest in history. But he said lessons needed to do more to join up the dots: 'We are all now obsessed with - from a memorialising point of view - World War Two. But [history] is all about connections and feeling part of something bigger than yourself.'
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