Commonwealth Online

Education resources from the British Empire & Commonwealth Museum

KS1: ages 5-7KS2: ages 7-11KS3: ages 11-14KS4: ages 14-16Website

Commonwealth Online uses the archive of The British Empire and Commonwealth Museum (based in Bristol) to bring together free, downloadable, curriculum-linked teaching packages. The resources fit mainly into the History curriculum, with cross-curricular links to other subjects including Art & Design, Citizenship, Geography, ICT and Literacy. They use film and audio recordings as well as image banks and PowerPoint presentations, with extensive teachers’ notes.

  • For Key Stage 1 (ages 5-7) there is a ‘Toys from the Commonwealth’ package exploring what children from other countries play with, both in the past and in the present day.
  • For Key Stage 2 (ages 7-11) ‘Suitcase Stories’ provides first-hand accounts of migration to Britain after World War II.
  • For Key Stage 3 (ages 11-14) there is an extensive packages exploring the history of the Transatlantic Slave Trade.
  • For Key Stage 4 (ages 14-16) there are packages designed to support teachers and learners preparing for the Schools History Project GCSE course ‘Medicine Through Time: A Development Study’.

There is also the option to select different Commonwealth countries or regions and explore background information on their history.

The museum also provides Loan Boxes (hire: £30 each) with artefacts relating to different aspects of Commonwealth history, and can also provide speakers to run workshops in schools.

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