The First World War was fought over a hundred years ago. Many thought it was the war to end all wars and it had a devastating effect on Europe. Find out what started it all, what the major events were and why it is still important to remember the dead a hundred years later and into the future.
Learn about the causes of the war, the western front and its trenches, the home front, the end of the war and how we commemorate this hugely significant historical event today.
This Topic is written for Lower Key Stage 2. If you want to use this Topic for a different Key Stage, you will need to consider how to adapt the outcomes, content, delivery methods, resources and differentiation, as well as the relevant National Curriculum objectives.
What were the reasons for this war starting? Act out and debate the different events and trends that led to the start of the first World War. Start a timeline of events leading up to the war.
Young men lied about their age to fight on the front line, and many soldiers travelled a long way from across the British Empire to join the fighting. From various sources find out about what it was like when they got there. Make a trench in the classroom with tables, and get chn to record their thoughts and write a poem in a diary while sitting in 'trenches'.
With so many people off fighting a war around the world, how did life at home change? Find out about the essential war work done at home, much of it by a new work force of women. Paint some propaganda posters urging people at home to help with the war effort.
Find out how the war ended and what happened immediately afterwards. Add these to your class timeline. Act out what the people of Britain would have felt. Discuss what the different people present at the peace meetings might have said and how they might have reacted to the terms of the Treaty of Versailles.
At the end of the First World War a day of commemoration was created to remember the dead. Recreate the main events in a Remembrance Day service and talk about the significance of each part.