It’s Remembrance Sunday this weekend, so I thought it might be useful to take a look at some resources that are available for teaching children about World War 1. Between picture books, fiction, information books, graphic novels and websites there are plenty of options available. I’ve taken a look at some journal articles that recommend relevant resources for KS1, KS2 and KS3.
Resources for KS1/KS2
Teaching English (2018, autumn issue) has a very interesting article written by Hilary Robinson on the challenges authors and illustrators face when they are writing stories about World War 1 for children in KS1 and KS2. Her series of 4 picture books, illustrated by Martin Impey, are often used for teaching at this level and all of these books are available (or will shortly be available) from the Curriculum Centre.
Where The Poppies Now Grow
Written in cumulative verse, this picture book describes two boys playing together, fighting in the war together and finally, being veterans together.
The Christmas Truce
A lovely story about that one peaceful night on No Man’s Land.
Flo Of The Somme
This picture book story pays tribute to the role of animals in the war.
Published on International Women’s Day and written in the form of a ballad, this story honours the role of women in war.
An article in English 4 – 11 (2014, summer issue) also explores KS1 and KS2 resources that are useful for teaching World War 1 under the following categories:
Information stories – based on soldier’s experiences in the trenches
Charlie’s War Illustrated by Mick Manning & Brita Granström
Brothers At War by Sarah Ridley
Books giving a child’s point of view
Archie’s War by Marcia Williams
One Boy’s War by Huggins-Cooper & Benfold Haywood
Books about the Christmas Truce
War Game by Michael Foreman
The Best Christmas Present In The World by Michael Morpurgo
Resources about poppies and war memorials
Charlie’s War Illustrated by Mick Manning & Brita Granström (part of In Flanders Field is displayed in speech bubbles)
Resources for KS3
Teaching English (2014, autumn issue) contains numerous articles on resources that can be used for World War 1 at KS3. Here are some of the suggestions:
The Great War by Joe Sacco
This book contains artwork depicting the Battle of the Somme.
Line Of Fire by Barroux
A graphic novel which documents the life of a real soldier. Barroux based his story on a collection of letters he found in a skip.
This website contains a set of resources produced in partnership with the National Literacy Trust and is aimed at students aged 11 -14. The resources are based on both the film and the book Private Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo.
This is an online repository with over 7000 text, images, audio, and video resources for teaching about World War 1.