Video: William the Conqueror
The Norman Invasion of England in 1066 is one of the most important series of events in English History. At Secondary Schools it is often the point from where studies of history begin. Pupils need to understand that the invasion was a complex operation and that conquest didn’t happen on one day, in one field, near Hastings. This video combines the Bayeux Tapestry with a song about the conquest to provide a stimulus for a study of these momentous events.
The video can be used alongside sequencing tasks to reinforce students awareness of the order in which events happened in and around 1066.
Follow up activities could include using activities such as source analysis of the Bayeux Tapestry. A workbook on the Normans and the Norman Conquest can be found here. This was designed for lower attaining learners.
William the Conqueror and the Norman Invasion is also part of some GCSE History specifications. These look at the impact of the invasion, often in relation to the Church in Norman England. We recommend that learners read around the subject if studying this course. They need to be aware of the level of change that occured in the period. It was immense. By 1086 just 3% of land in England, according to Domesday, was not held by the King, Church or Norman Barons. By the end of Norman rule in 1135 15 Cathedrals had been built or significantly rebuilt: 9 of which had been completed by the end of William I’s reign. See the images in this group for infographics that break down the impact of Normanisation.