WW1 KS2 – Local history Remembrance Day lesson plan

What's included?

PDF lesson plan

Key Stage



Years 5-6


Most primary schools commemorate Remembrance Day. But it is often difficult through a traditional assembly for children in KS2 to truly make sense of the scale and impact of WW1 and WW2.

This lesson is designed to support pupils in gaining a better understanding of the World Wars. We consider the impact on their own locality, and focus on the lives of individuals or groups affected by the wars.

The examples highlighted in this lesson plan are taken from a unit studied by an UKS2 class in a school near the centre of York.

What they’ll learn

  • That individuals and groups had differing experiences as a result of the war
  • To be able to identify some of the sources providing evidence of the impact of the war
  • That communities chose to remember the casualties of war in a variety of ways

Starter activity – WW1 KS2

First of all, use the A Street Near You website to look at the local area with your class.

Next, type in your school’s postcode in the top right-hand search bar, and then zoom in on the map to find your street, or one nearby.

The amount of names will vary depending on where you are. Ask the children who they think the people featured there were. They will all be individuals from the area around the school that lost their lives during the war.

Finally, ask pupils what they notice about them from the information provided. There may be links between them relating to the dates or places where they died. For example, are there any from the same street or family?

National curriculum history KS2

The national curriculum for history in KS2 states that pupils should continue to develop a chronologically secure knowledge and understanding of British, local and world history, establishing clear narratives within and across the periods they study. They should:

  • note connections, contrasts and trends over time and develop the appropriate use of historical terms;
  • regularly address and sometimes devise historically valid questions about change, cause, similarity and difference, and significance;
  • construct informed responses that involve thoughtful selection and organisation of relevant historical information;
  • understand how we construct our knowledge of the past from a range of sources.

Rachel Bruce is a primary teacher and history leader. Bev Forrest is a primary teacher trainer, and author of Rising Stars History. Follow Rachel on Twitter @Rachelthebruce1 and follow Bev @HistoryPrimary. Browse more Remembrance Day activities.

WW1 KS2 – Local history Remembrance Day lesson plan

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