Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Belgium Trip 2012

View Nonsuch Belgium Trip in a larger map

Above is a map which shows the main sites that we will be visiting during the Year 10 trip to the battlefields of Flanders on 9 and 10 March. (We recommend that you click on "View Nonsuch Belgium Trip" to see it more clearly. The blue flags represents places we will visit on Friday and the green ones those on Saturday. More details for the trip will appear on the blog shortly.

If you would like to read more about what took place around Ypres during the First World War, this site is an excellent general guide. This gives more specific information about the first battle of Ypres (plus information on the other battles: (second, third, more on the third.)

The Commonwealth War Graves Commisson website is ideal for searching for those who lost their lives during the fighting.
The Long Long Trail site is excellent for more detailed searches for particular individuals and family members involved in World War One.

Who do YOU think was to blame for the outbreak of WW1

Year 9s who have been studying the origins of the World War One, here is your chance to participate in an online debate about who was to blame for the War. Was it one individual country's fault, the fault of individuals like Princip or Kaiser Wilhelm or was it the system that was put in place by a number of different governments. Write a paragraph giving your opinion, supported by reasons, and sign off with you initials.
9My - this should be completed by Wednesday 7 March.

Tuesday, 28 February 2012


If you scroll down the right hand side of the blog until you reach the dolphin you will notice a figure showing how many people have accessed Nonsuch HP since it began in May 2009. This week that number has gone over the 100,000 visits mark. The number may be small compared to the readership of The Sun or viewing figures for Downton Abbey but it is still exciting to think that that number of people have ended up on the blog through an interest in History or Politics (or maybe just a lucky Google search!). Many thanks to all our visitors.

Apologies that posts are rather sparse at the moment - if you have any ideas or read any articles that you think are suitable for the blog, please send them in!

PS: The image is of a 100,000 dollar bill - issued briefly in 1934. You can read more about it here.

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Much warmer today in Washington which allowed our group to enjoy their tour of Washington buildings whilst still being able to feel their ears.

They got to Ford's Theatre, the National Archives, the US Supreme Court and the Capitol Building as well as getting to one of the committee rooms in the Dirksen Congressional Office. Unfortunately, we missed our meeting with the congressional staffer as he was called away to a meeting with the Foreign Relations Committee chairman who clearly has more sway than us.

The evening was spent at the Verizon Center watch the Washington Capitals ice hockey team lost to the San Jose Sharks 5-3. Great atmosphere and a fantastic experience.

Location:Monday in DC

Monday, 13 February 2012

Sunday in Washington

Bitterly cold in Washington today with temperatures barely above zero all day. Our brave group soldiered on and saw both the White House and Washington Monument and visited the White House Visitor Centre, American History Museum and Newseum which, once again, was firmly voted as a favourite museum. The Naval Memorial which includes a walk over map of the world allowed an excited Mrs Forkan to conduct an impromptu Geography lesson. Dinner at the Hard Rock was a pleasant experience (which made a change from previous trips) and the day was finished off with a visit to the tackiest souvenir shop in DC so don't expect great presents when we return!!

Weather set to warm up for the rest of the week which will be a relief.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Washington Update

With all their winter clothes crammed into suitcases, the 2012 History & Politics Washington group arrived safely to the bitterly cold US capital yesterday. Having sampled the US size food portions in Harriets, a very tired group headed off to bed for an early night ready for the first day of sightseeing tomorrow. Predicted snow did not materialise but temperature staying around freezing all day today but everyone ready to "layer up" and face the biting wind chill!!

Monday, 6 February 2012

Who do YOU think was to blame for the Cold War?

Year 10s who have been studying the origins of the Cold War, here is your chance to participate in an online debate about who was to blame for the Cold War. Was it the USSR's fault (traditional view), the USA's fault (revisionist view) or both sides were to blame (post-revisionist view). Use the comments box to state which interpretation of history you agree with and give your reasons why. Do feel free to engage with the views of others and say if you agree or disagree with them (but be respectful). Please sign the post using just your initials rather than your full name. If you are looking for additional sources about the Cold War including definitions of many of the key terms, look here.

Friday, 3 February 2012

Civil Rights Timeline

Year 9s may find this of interest for their research into Civil Rights in the USA - the timeline extends over 4 sections - click on the arrow on the bottom right for the next part.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Groundhog Rivalry

Today is Groundhog Day - and you can catch the latest weather reports from Phil the Groundhog from Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania here - will he predict an early spring? However, Phil is not the only hog-based forecaster - he has a rival, Chuck, in Staten Island, New York who counts the mayor Michael Bloomberg amongst his afficionados. You can read more about the prickly relationship between the two hogs here.

UPDATE: Sadly Phil has seen his shadow - which means 6 more weeks of winter. Judging by the temperature outside, I think we all saw that one coming.