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Women during WW2 - Lesson ideas!

Discussion in 'History' started by Dawnie86, Jul 11, 2011.

  1. Hi everyone!
    I'm teaching a lesson on how life changed for women during WW2 and I've completely blanked! I want something interesting, engaging and creative but I just can't get it planned!
    Does anyone have any ideas I can steal?!

    Thanks :)
    Dawn x
  2. There was a programme on recently, Dawn, about the record-making building of a Wellington bomber from scratch in 24 hours during WW2, I think it was on the BBC. Anyway, many of the workers were women and some of the survivors were interviewed for the programme, justifiably proud of their achievement and keen to tell of their memories. An interesting programme if you can find a copy and show a few minutes of it as a way into a discussion on the changing role of women.
  3. Some of the pilots were women, too. They didn't do combat missions so far as I know, but they flew aircraft from place to place - everything from Spitfires to Lancasters
  4. Dawn
    The Imperial War Museum offers resources for just this purpose:
    If you can find a copy (it is on dvd), the 1943 film "Millions Like Us", which is about a girl going into a factory, is amusing and has some useful scenes.
    Some points to consider in discussion:
    Unmarried women between 21 and 41 were <u>required</u> to do "National Service" - most of them went into factories rather than the Services.
    Married women with children over 14 (the school leaving age) were also required to undertake work if directed. This meant that some women who had been required to give up jobs pre-war on marriage (teachers, for instance)found themselves required to go back to the same jobs. But they often lost them again after the war.
    The experience of women teahers is an interesting one. Their importance was recognised and their employer could seek deferement of call-up, but they had to remain in teaching. They were not totally exempt from call-up (although this is often stated that they were) and younger female teachers, like their male counterparts, were called up for the Services. They could volunteer, of course.
    Hope this helps.
  5. Indeed! They flew newly completed and repaired planes to airfields.

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