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Learning Objectives


  • Chronology of WWII
  • Why children were evacuated
  • To role play as an Evacuee
  • To understand billeting
  • The need for gas masks
  • Take part in an air raid practice
  • Why rationing was needed
  • About different artefacts from WWII.


  • Identify different warplanes from WWII
  • Understand the varied feelings that many children felt about evacuation
  • Name the main leaders during the war.

Key words/phrases

Blitz, Billeting Officer, Evacuee, Axis, Allies, Winston Churchill, Adolf Hitler, Air raid, Blackout, Ration Book, Gas Mask, Dig for Victory, Land Army, ARP, Anderson/Morrison Shelter


Centre staff will welcome your group and describe the day’s programme, learning objectives, and the health and safety issues. (10 mins)

½ Day Course Programme

Classes will then separate and sessions A and B will be interchangeable am and pm with session A generally led by the centre teacher.

Evacuees meet on the playground by “Air raid warden” (10 mins)
Settling into the centre bags/ toilets etc (10 mins)

Session A

  • Activity: Billeting in old classroom to different families from the village (20 mins)
  • Activity: Secret Suitcase. Investigating 4 different suitcases to find out for whom they belong (30 mins)
  • Activity: Dig for Victory – making plants pots (10 mins)
  • Anderson Shelter: Going underground in our shelter to test the homemade gas masks the evacuees have brought with them (template available) (10 mins)

Session B

  • Warplane recognition. Problem solving activity in small groups based around the orienteering course outside the centre. (45 mins)
  • Clothes Rationing: Decision making activity on what to include in their suitcase, based on ration quotas. (20 mins)
  • Postcard Writing: A chance to tell loved ones back home about the experiences they are having as evacuees. (15 mins)

Detailed activity sheets for this session can be found in the “History Comes to Life at Perlethorpe” curriculum material. Copies available at the centre.


Back at the Centre the group will reflect on their day and consider how well the learning objectives have been met (5 – 10 mins).

Safety Considerations

Weather Conditions and clothing

Some clothes are available for children to get into role whilst they are at the centre. However, if the children can come in clothes appropriate for an evacuee this will help bring their trip to life. The centre teacher will contact the group leader if conditions are unsafe for the visit to continue.

Equipment supplied

Costumes, suitcases with artefacts, pot making equipment, pencils, clothes rationing sheets, clipboards, first aid kit.

Equipment needed from school

Gas masks and name tag for each pupil, box to take pots home.

Other Information

The actual programme may vary depending on the number and needs of pupils, length of visit and weather conditions.

Useful Information

3rd September 1939 – 7th May 1945 (VE) 14th August 1945 (VJ)

The British evacuation began on Friday 1 September 1939. It was called 'Operation Pied Piper'. Evacuation did not officially end until March 1946.


  • Britain: Neville Chamberlain/Winston Churchill
  • USSR: Josef Stalin
  • France: Charles de Gaulle
  • USA: Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman (1945)
  • China: Mao Tse Tung and Chiang Kai Shek (Rival leaders)


  • Germany: Adolf Hitler
  • Italy: Benito Mussolini
  • Japan: Emperor Hirohito, PM Hideki Tojo (Entered War 1941)



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