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Newsletter 16


It is now compulsory for all new members to post a biography. I would like to thank all those existing members who have done this. All regular posters have now posted their biographies. I would be grateful if those who have not yet done so could find time to do this.

There is another reason why it is important to post your biography. Several sections have now been set up where students can make use of contributions made by members in their studies. It is very important for these students to know who is making these statements. It is therefore useful for them to be able to click the poster’s biography in the signature in order to get these details.

If you have not yet posted your biography go to:


Click “NEWTOPIC” (top right). Then type in your own name as the “Topic Title”. Write in your biography in the box provided. Then click “Post New Topic” at the bottom of the page.

Once this has been posted you need to obtain the URL of the thread. For example, mine is:


If you have posted your biography in the collected section:


You can get your individual URL by clicking the Post # symbol at the top on the right-hand side of your original biography posting.

If that is not clear, follow the instructions above and re-post your biography at:


Once you have your biography URL you need to post it in your signature.

To do this go to My Controls (top, right of the screen).

On the left-hand side click ‘Edit Signature’ (under Personal Profile).

Now type “Biography” and add your URL in the box provided.

You might also want to add the URL of any website you may have (or wish to support).

Then click “Update my Signature”

User Names

We now insist that before people join the forum that are required to provide a real name. Understandably, new members complain when they discover that some older members have not done this. Therefore we are having to insist that all members now use their real names and post their biographies.

If you need to change your user name the best way is to PM Andy Walker or myself and we will sort it out for you.


If you wish to add your photograph. First select a photograph on your hard-drive. Your picture must be no bigger than 64 pixels by 64 pixels in size. If the width is less than 64 pixels, make a note of its size. If you are unable to do this, send me the photograph by email and I will do it for you.

Now go to My Controls (top, right of the screen).

Select ‘Edit Avatar Settings’ (under Personal Profile).

Go to the bottom of the page where it says ‘Upload a new image from your computer’. Click ‘Browse’.

(A box will appear at the top that will show what is on your computer. You now have to find your photograph (best to leave it on your Desktop – if not, find the folder where you have stored it).

Click the image and then click ‘Open’.

Type in the size of your photograph (in pixels)

Now click ‘Update Avatar’. You picture should now appear on the screen. It will now appear every time you make a posting.

Changes in Society

I thought it would be a good idea to create a section where people can discuss changes taking place in society. The idea is for people to identify these changes and to speculate on the possible consequences for society. It would be especially interesting to get comments from people from a wide variety of different cultures. I believe this section could be very useful to students studying subjects such as social studies, social sciences and sociology. On occasion it will also help students studying other subjects such as media studies, politics, psychology, etc. So far we have debates going on: Divorce, Erosion of the Family, Reality Television, Processed Food, Childhood Obesity, Rules for Good Behaviour, Pre-Emptive War and International Terrorism.


History Association Curriculum Project

There are several debates taking place as a result of the SHP Conference at Leeds in the summer. This includes a seminar being led by Seán Lang. Over the last few months the Historical Association has conducted consultations with history education specialists, with academic historians and with representatives from the heritage industry and from other history associations. We will be conducting consultation with teachers and with pupils. It aims to report in the autumn of 2004. What it will do will be to recommend the principles and criteria that should underpin school history in the 14-19 phase. I hope as many history teachers will take part in this important debate.




One of the advantages of making everyone submit a biography is that we can get an accurate picture of our members. Currently we have 957 members. Reading the biographies section it seems we now have members from Britain (136), USA (84), Australia (29), France (14), Spain (10), Canada (7), Netherlands (6), Sweden (6), Belgium (5), Italy (4), Finland (4), Greece (3), Ireland (3), Brazil (2), New Zealand (2), Denmark (2), China (1), Germany (1), Poland (1), Serbia (1), Belarus (1), Israel (1), South Korea (1), Romania (1), Sudan (1), Mexico (1), Borneo (1), Colombo (1), Nigeria (1), Argentina (1), South Africa (1), Philippines (1), Austria (1), India (1), Hungary (1) and Hong Kong (1).


Past copies of newspapers can be found at:



At the moment, the following issues provide opportunities for good debate. I would welcome your contributions to these and other debates taking place on the forum.

The Novel That Changed Your Life


Ofsted Inspections


Racism and Academic Achievement


Peer and Self Assessment


Schools of the Future


Teacher Workload


Emotional Intelligence


Special Schools


Personalized Curriculum


Are Parents to Blame?


Animal Rights and our Rights


George Bush and CIA Terrorism


Iraq: Worse than Vietnam?


John Simkin

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  • 10 months later...

Newsletter 17

E-HELP Project

In September we hope to start a new project via the Forum. We are looking for volunteers to help us with this e-learning development. There is two main ways to participate. One way is to join one of our history topic panels. Subjects covered so far include: American West, Cold War, Vietnam War, Women's History, Life and Death of JFK, Spanish Civil War, First World War, Nazi Germany, Second World War, History of Russia, Black History, History of Medicine, Nordic History, Holocaust, History of India and Watergate. We are looking for people with a knowledge of these topics or those who are willing to talk about their experiences of these events (Cold War, Women’s History, Vietnam War, Watergate, etc.). We are especially keen to get teachers and panel members from as many different countries as possible.


We also need history teachers to submit questions for these panels. The idea is that at the beginning of the topic the teacher will discuss with the class a possible question for the panel. This question should highlight the different ways that the past is interpreted. This question will then be posted and students all over the world will be able to see how these interpretations differ. It will also give students an insight into the way the past is debated.

Please email me at johnsimkin1945@hotmail.com if you wish to participate in this project.


At the moment, the following issues provide opportunities for good debate. I would welcome your contributions to these and other debates taking place on the forum.

Creationism and the Teaching of Science


The Ashes


Christian Fundamentalism


Failure or Deferred Success?


Grammar Schools or Comprehensive Schools


Religious Hatred Legislation


Is America an Occupied Country?


Progressive Taxation and Morality


The Just War Theory


Was Jesus a Revolutionary?


Arthur Bremer and Richard Nixon


Deep Throat: Hero or Villain?


Abortion in Nazi Germany


Hiroshima: A War Crime


Death of Marilyn Monroe




Vietnam and the Domino Theory


Ronald Reagan and the Cold War


Did Fidel Castro Kill JFK?


Who Killed Enrico Mattei?


John Simkin

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