World War I - Empires Collide
Next year marks a number
of significant, albeit horrific, milestones in the history of mankind. On April 25, Australians will observe the
90th anniversary of the landing at Gallipoli, Turkey by what were to become
known as the Anzacs. It was to be one of the bloodiest chapters in this
nation's history. Next year also marks the 60th anniversary of the end of World
World War I was the first
major international conflict of the 20th century, a conflict so much bigger
than any before that at the time it was simply known as The Great War.
In many ways it marked the
end of an era and the beginning of one of the bloodiest periods of human
history. While 1914 marked the beginning of the conflict and 1918 the end, the
war had its origins decades before and in some ways was only resolved by World
Learning looks at the
origins of some of these major conflicts, the lessons to be learned and questions
the relevance of Remembrance Day to today's generation.
- Compare the weapons carried by a soldier in
WW1 and soldiers today. Write a product description of one.
- Creative use of available materials enabled
the sick to be treated in the trenches. Using only the materials in your
school bag and desk design 3 tools for specific purposes.
- Many technology firsts appeared in this war on
land and in the air and sea. Discuss what difference they made to the
outcome of the war. Study the developments made to tanks, aircraft or
submarines during the war. Collate your findings in the form of diagrams
and a flow chart.
- Study a variety of history books from the
library about the origins of WW1. How do they compare with today's
Learning feature? Use this information to prepare an overview for a
documentary you want to make for The History Channel.
- Write a diary as if you were a soldier in the
trenches. Use real names and places to give your diary entries validity.
- Describe the emotions of the young men off to
war. How would those who volunteered feel in comparison to those who were
conscripted? Write 2 poems using these descriptions.
- War has so often been glorified, yet the
memories of the returned soldiers are far from glorious. They tell of
horrific deaths and of those who died in vain. Write a eulogy for the
soldiers who never returned from Anzac Cove.
- Look at a modern conflict situation featured
in The Mercury. Can you see any parallels between WW1 and this conflict?
Write a speech from the soldiers of WW1 to the people involved in conflict
- Many soldiers made life long friends during
the war. What factors helped to establish these bonds? Discuss experiences
that have caused you to form close relationships with other people.
- At times morale could be very low for those at
the front. Plan a morale-boosting week. Write a timetable of practical
suggestions for soldiers to help with wartime blues. (Remember resources
were limited so you need to be inventive.)
- Many young men lied about their age to
participate and represent their country. What would you say to a young
16-year-old about to enlist? Role-play a variety of scenarios.
- Illusions of heroism and death with honour
were chief incentives for WW1 volunteers. Find an example and combine this
image with your knowledge of persuasive advertising techniques to make
your own recruiting posters. These could be for a school event (e.g.
sports carnival) or a worthwhile cause (e.g. 40-hour Famine Appeal).
ANZAC Day Home Page
Australian War Museum
BBC - History - World War I
War and Anti-war films
First World War.com
Art of the First World War
World War 1 Cartoons