Spanish Armada Bundle
  • This Bundle has been designed to help teachers prepare for the AQA 2020 Historic Environment Study.
  • The included Revision Guide has 6 possible questions for GCSE exam practice and breaks down the main details of the Spanish Armada into manageable chunks, using what again I am calling the 5p’s. This guide, using the ‘p’ words for simplification focuses on the main concepts of location, conflict, resources, events and people connected to it as advised by AQA through their Paper 2: Shaping the nation resource pack guidance.
  • The first lesson included aims to explain how the Spanish planning of the Armada was flawed from the start. An analysis of the Commanders involved shows a plethora of mistakes made and how Philip decided to combine the plans of Santa Cruz and the Duke of Parma to placate the two and massage his ego as a superior naval commander. The deteriorating relationship between Philip and Elizabeth is analysed and compared to a pressure cooker – students have to decide which events manipulated Philip’s anger between simmering, boiling and exploding. A thinking quilt aims to challenge assumptions and evaluate the major weaknesses of these Spanish plans and their impact on overall victory. Students are finally required to write a practice exam question using the worksheets supplied and tips are given how to make sustained line of argument rather than tell a story of the commanders and Philip’s decisions.
  • This second lesson included aims to explain how English planning for the Armada was foreword thinking, complete with technological innovation, daring courage and just a little bit of luck mixed in. Students bug a question which is referred to throughout the lesson (box it up, underline the key points and refer back to it continually when completing) before using a choice of differentiated materials to analyse historical significance of these English innovations and the Commanders involved. They also have a chance to use causational equations to promote linking ideas together to provide sustained lines of reasoning required for the higher level 4 answers in the markscheme. There are some exemplar answers given at the end to emphasise common mistakes and how students can achieve the highest grades, which are typical of those analysed in AQA GCSE courses such as ‘getting to grips with Elizabethan England.’
  • The final lesson included analyses the battle itself and reasons for English success and Spanish failure. Students make up and pour a toxic cocktail of causes before piecing together the reasons why the Armada failed and ran out of energy, by giving it an energy rating in a prioritisation exercise. They also have to amend a number of statements and correct them, explaining the reasons why they are incorrect. Finally students can complete another GCSE exam practice question for the Environmental Study 2020 with ideas and help to hand.
  • The resources come in PDF and Word if you wish to adapt and change. I would welcome any reviews which would be much appreciated.
  • If you like the resources, please check out my AQA Elizabeth Revision Guide, c.1568-1603 which can be found here:
  • You can also download my free copy of the previous Historic Environment Question on Hardwick Hall for 2018 for similar guidance which can be found here:


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Created: Sep 29, 2019

Updated: Nov 1, 2019

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