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Sharing the Archive
Plea to school teachers for feedback
It is now a race against time before sadly memories of the Second World War will be lost forever and the Centre felt that a filming project would be a valuable teaching resource for secondary schools (KS3), providing them with a record of Dunkirk and Holocaust experiences (outlined in the curriculum) before veterans can no longer visit the children in person.
As well as supplying schools with specific DVDs, schools can be provided with supporting information produced in-house. We encourage teachers to show the film as part of a themed assembly during remembrance.
We have filmed veterans across the country and produced a DVD for teachers to use in class as well as other institutions.
The school DVD includes the following:
Are you be interested in using this DVD at your school? We would be grateful for your feedback and thoughts on the DVD – please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
We are aware that the cardinal imperative is to gather information relating to personal experience in the Second World War. However, that does not diminish our duty to share the archive with as wide an audience as possible. This is vital so that an understanding of the experience of those who lived through these years of conflict can be developed and, with it, a respect for the fact that this forms an important part of our heritage. A quote from someone who experienced the Second World War at first hand supports our own beliefs:
It has to be a good thing to preserve experience to
help future generations to understand what living through those years
was like. Surely history students need such first-hand information
but when some school-children today do not even know who Winston Churchill
was, nor what D-Day signifies, then an archive which is dedicated to
the war years deserves all our encouragement.
The Second World War Experience Centre recognises the importance of providing testimony to help children understand what life was like during the Second World War.
The Department for Education & Employment's guide on the National Curriculum reads: "history fires pupils' curiosity about the past. . .pupils consider how the past influences the present. . . As they do this, pupils develop. . .knowledge of significant events and people. They see the diversity of human experience, and understand more about themselves as individuals and members of society. What they learn can influence their decisions about personal choices, attitudes and values. In history, pupils find evidence, weigh it up and reach their own conclusions. To do this they need to be able to research it, sift through evidence, and argue for their point of view - skills that are prized in adult life".
History also provides opportunities for pupils to develop a wide range of key skills including communication, Information Technology, working with others, improving their own learning and performances and problem solving. The Second World War was a major turning point in British history yet there is very little quality information available for teachers and pupils that is able to inspire the school-children of today and tomorrow, so that the memories and experiences of such an integral part of our history can be preserved.
The Second World War Experience Centre has previously risen to the challenge by producing an educational module "Experience Evacuation", which consists of a special education resource pack for teachers and pupils at Key Stage 2. The pack provides useful background information on the evacuation process in Britain from 1939-1945 as well as charting the experiences of four evacuees. Resources include materials which can be photocopied such as maps and worksheets in addition to notes for teachers and parent helpers.
The 50-page pack is suitable for Key Stage 2 History Unit 9 What was
it like for children in the Second World War. We are selling the 'Experience:
Evacuation' packs at £20 each (a nominal charge to cover our
printing and packaging costs). Should you be interested in ordering
one or more copies of the pack please send the appropriate payment
by cash or cheque (made payable to The Second World War Experience
Centre) to Education, The Second World War Experience Centre, 1a Rudgate Court,Walton,
For any further information or questions regarding our educational work, please contact The Centre
This same pack is now available as a module on our Website. Please go to Experience Evacuation to access or download these pages.
As part of a Heritage Lottery Funded grant, we have developed further Web pages exploring other aspects of the Home Front for use by Key Stage 2 students. The pages explore rationing, overseas evacuation and supporting the War Effort as well as providing further evacuation experiences. These pages are supported with teachers notes and learning activities.
Our new Key Stage 2 education pack, ‘What was it like for Children in the Second World War’, introduces childhood experiences of eleven men and women growing up in wartime and who have since shared their memories with the Second World War Experience Centre. It includes a young Polish girl describing how she was deported to Siberia with her family, a German Jewish boy evacuated to Britain through the Kindertransport, a child’s life in a Far East Civilian Prisoner of War Camp and another’s in occupied Belgium as well as recollections of the British home front. The pack also includes activities and worksheets relating to these experiences.
The pack is available from the Second World War Experience Centre and costs £20.00 including postage and packing. Please send a cheque payable to The Second World War Experience Centre to
What Was It Like For Children In The Second World War
We are currently developing a module portraying the experiences of a range of people from Leeds. This will include a Fleet Air Arm mechanic, a lady who served with Polish airmen in the WAAF and a young Jewish man escaping to the Leeds area from persecution in Nazi Germany.
For further information or questions regarding our education work,
please contact the Centre at email@example.com
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