The WW2 topic, our workshops and the new curriculum

Are you in a general kerfuffle about the changes to the history curriculum and worried that you won't be able to cover WW2?  


Well don't be, for one of the most loved topics in primary schools can still easily be taught from September 2014, and can be made even more relevant with a little imagination and interpretation.  


In addition, the wider remit for teachers to interpret the curriculum in their own ways (as given in examples in the 'grey bits' of the new framework and promised, believe it or not, by that nice man Mr Gove before this all started), also allows for greater teaching freedom in line with the creative curriculum approach currently used by a lot of schools.

Keep calm and carry on teaching about our proud WW2 heritage!

ww2 dads army

Don't panic Captain we can still teach about WW2!

The new curriculum text that states this says "a study of an aspect of history or a site dating from a period beyond 1066 that is significant in the locality".


This is also therefore an easy route to covering the topic because there aren't many local areas  in the UK that weren't affected by events of WW2.  This approach could also include interviewing relatives, bringing in family items from the war or visiting local areas that are connected to WW2.  After all, what is more local than a pupil's own family and surroundings?

ROUTE 2 : via the 'local history' strand

ROUTE 1 : via the 'significant events' option


What's that?  Other 'significant' stuff happened after 1066?

This is perhaps the easiest way to include WW2 in the new curriculum.   In fact, the document even uses The Battle of Britian as an example, as follows: "a significant turning point in British history, e.g. ..the Battle of Britain", and that is only one WW2 event from many you could choose.  For example, you could use evacuation, rationing, the Blitz, D-day, Dunkirk or in fact any aspect of WW2 that fits in with your wider topic planning.  You'll be pleased to hear that these are all covered in our new NC 2014 planning pack which can be downloaded here.


In addition, if you wanted to stick to the Battle of Britain, we also cover this in some detail in our workshops, notbaly in the interactive timeline, where we use drama to show pupils how our brave pilots managed to win the battle against overwhleming odds.


"One of the major complaints from primary school (teachers) about the February draft was that it denied them the chance to teach some of the more popular units .. in particular the Victorians and the Second World War. These complaints have been heard and it is now possible for schools to continue teaching these topics through the local history study option and the beyond 1066 study"


Tim Taylor,The Guardian, July 2013

(full article here)

"No problem, we are going to continue teaching the WW2 topic via the 'significant events' strand"


S Green, y6 teacher, Derbyshire.