Truman on Trial

Investigating the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Peace Education resource: Truman on Trial
KS3: ages 11-14KS4: ages 14-16Website

The dropping of the nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki was a turning point in the 20th Century. Over 240,000 people were killed and even today the debate is still raging as to whether the bombings were necessary to end the Second World War.

In this three part resource from CND, students investigate what happened before, during and after the bombings. They then put President Truman on trial and decide whether or not the bombings were justified. There are also four subject specific extension activities to enable classes to explore the issues surrounding the bombings in more detail.

This resource has four subject pathways:

  • Citizenship: Focussing on: global conflict; interpretation of events and materials; individual action
  • English: Focussing on: use of language; poetry
  • History: Focussing on: historical context; reliability of source materials
  • Religious Studies: Focussing on: morality; Just War theory

The resource also helps the Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural (SMSC) development of students.

Review of ‘Truman on Trial’:

‘This excellent new resource has dealt with the subject matter… in a sensitive and thought provoking way… The resource is ambitious in that it can be used at either KS3 or KS4; it is also cross-curricular and sits well within the foundation subjects such as English. The effective use of primary and secondary resources material brings the subject matter alive and the strength of the resource is that it includes a multitude of participatory and learning methodologies such as the use of discussion, debate, role play and ranking exercises. All of which develop crucial thinking skills of: Information-processing, Reasoning, Enquiry, Creative thinking and Evaluation.’ – Balbir Sohal, education consultant and Association for Citizenship Teaching member (full review:


Items available

    • null (free)
    • Order hard copy from CND or download PDFs and PowerPoints from the web address below.

Order from

Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament

162 Holloway Road,

LondonN7 8DQ
Website: Visit websitePhone: 020 7700 2393

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