Spanish armada app         Spanish Armada

         Subject:           History

         Topic:               Spanish History, Naval Warfare, Tudors, Religion, Christianity                         

         Audience:        KS3

         Question:         Why did Philip II of Spain decide to launch an armada of ships to invade England,
                                    and would he be sorry he did so?

         Author:             Paul Lawrence


The Spanish Armada is a significant event during the Tudor period, and one which sheds light upon a number of key themes that emerge during the study of ‘The Making of the UK’. These include Catholic and Protestant religion, power, warfare, international politics and questions of succession to the throne. It is also an event whose outcome could not have been predicted, but provides a good opportunity for students in Key Stage Three to consider a range of factors and evaluate the contribution each event or combination of events makes to the ultimate failure of Philip of Spain’s campaign.

While the students using the basic set are asked to identify the reasons for the launch of the Armada and its outcome, the standard set of statements are intended to assist students in the skills of evaluation, and the assessment of the importance of religious conflict as a cause of the venture. More able students could then consider how much the planning and tactics of those involved were undermined by forces beyond human control. It is hoped that this will help to develop the higher-order strategies of analysis and evaluation that will lead to success in Key Stage Four.