WW2 primary workshop activity Details
Learn about the key events of WW2, handle a range of real artefacts, put out pretend fires, blackout windows and bandage each other up WW2 style!
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All of these activities are for a single class at a time and last for one lesson. They can be combined to build your own Second World War history workshop dependent on the amount of classes and the amount of time booked. For example, for a single class full day it is 4 activities, while if you have two or more classes in a single day the activities are more limited to one or two tasks per class across the day.
Single class, full day example (also available for half days)
Two classes, full day example
Follow all the key events of the Second World War in a fun group roleplay activity
Covering all the topic content and linked to the suggestion in the National Curriculum to study the Battle of Britain as a "significant British event", our fun interactive timeline is a great way to add meaning to the period.
Key events covered include the outbreak of war, Hitler's invasion of Poland, evacuation, rationing, Dunkirk, the submarine war for the Atlantic, D-Day and the end of the war plus several more, all taught in a humorous way with appropriate moments when required for reflection on the sacrifice made by many people for our freedom.
Many teachers see this as an essential activity as it is a great way to enhance pupils' learning massively and add context to the rest of the day's activities.
Artefact Handling Session
Handle over 70 genuine Second World War artefacts, models and documents!
After a pretend Air raid siren drama activity pupils investigate our wide range of genuine WW2 artefacts for themselves in small groups, in several themed sections such as gas attacks, first aid and mystery objects, with amazing items such as morse code sets, completely safe gas masks, many genuine WW2 documents, air raid warden equipment and much, much more.
This is a unique oppportunity to handle real primary sources and has been compared by many pupils and teachers to being able to step into a museum and handle everything on display in possibly the best historical enquiry session your pupils have ever experienced.
Discover for yourself how difficult it was to blackout windows!
One of the most difficult parts of life for people on the home front in World War Two was having to blackout windows to protect themselves from the German bomber planes and this activity allows pupils to experience this in a group competition.
They also learn what life was like in the blackout by looking at associated artefacts such as lamps and a sample of real blackout curtain from 1940 which is very black indeed!
This activity is a great way to step into the WW2 experiences of boys and girls who would have no doubt helped their parents in the blackout task in the blitz.
Put our pretend fires with a genuine WW2 fire fighting hose
(late Spring or Summer only due to needing good weather)
In what is one of many pupils' favourite activity, everyone gets the chance to use our genuine WW2 stirrup pump to knock over our pretend firebombs in a competition against their classmates before we have a more serious chat about what it actually entailed to be a fire guard during the blitz.
This was a very scary task in the real blitz as many fire-guards had to spend teh evening watching for fires to put out and this is not lost on the children as they invaraibly realise how difficult it is and end up with a new found respcet for the brave wardens of WW2!
See and handle a complete WW2 home first aid kit and bandage up your friends
One of the hardest jobs for air raid wardens was to rescue people from buildings and give them first aid and in this activity we look in detail at what that entailed.
Beginning with a look at a genuine complete WW2 home first aid kit (made by Boots!) we move on to the different bandaging methods using a real instruction book from the time.
Pupils are then set several bandage challenges in pairs, from heads to arms, to hands! Who can do it exactly as per the proper WW2 instructions?