William Cecil’s Dilemmas 1547-1558
This is a slightly amended version of an activity from my book The Tudor Century (1993). It is intended for use as an introduction to the reigns of Edward VI and Mary, focusing on points in William Cecil’s career which were also central moments in the political history of this period. The activity should give students an initial knowledge of the main people, events and changes in religious policy and an introduction to the idea that this period can be seen as one of crisis.
The task is straightforward, to use the information about Cecil and events to take the decisions set out on the attached sheets. This could be done by the class as a whole or by pairs who then report back to the class on their choices with you, as teacher, guiding discussion. The activity ends on sheet 4 with a series of follow-up questions for discussion. A timeline is provided on sheet 5 for reference.
A second activity which could be used later in work on this period is ‘What’s on the agenda?’. This could even be used three times – at the beginning of Edward’s reign, when Northumberland takes over and when Mary becomes queen!
Download the resource file [ click here ]
Note: this activity is based on the ’Decision Making’ style of model; for more examples of this model, click here.
Constructive feedback is always welcome, particularly anything that will help other teachers.