With school closures due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Museum is committed to serving students, teachers, and parents who are now conducting school online. Teaching from home can present unique challenges, but The National WWII Museum offers a wide array of online resources to help you teach your students or children about the history of World War II from the comfort of your own home. Below you will find a collection of lesson plans, essays, webinars, and at-home activities designed to help educators and homeschooling parents reach their teaching goals while they are away from their classrooms.
From the Collection to the Classroom
From the Collection to the Classroom: The online educational hub for The National WWII Museum’s own curriculum covering four separate volumes on the history of World War II including: The War in the Pacific, The War in Europe, The Home Front, and Liberation & Legacy. Each curriculum kit contains essays, lesson plans, links to oral histories, maps, timelines, and several other teaching tools you can use to help students learn about the war that changed the world.
All lessons and essays are free to access and download. Teachers, please create a free account to access the full selection of resources, including archival footage, “What Would You Do?” scenario videos, as well as other online resource materials.
Real World Science
Real World Science: Real World Science is part of an effort by The National WWII Museum, and funded by the Northrop Grumman Foundation, to use the war that changed the world to teach how society turns to Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) when it faces big problems. Gain access to over forty different lesson plans to help students learn how to connect science, history, and literacy through a series of fun activities.
Distance Learning Program Archive
Distance Learning Program Archive: Find all past webinars and Electronic Field Trips within this video archive. Videos can be sorted by category, so if you teach social studies, science, or English, there is something for you! Be sure to check out our recent Electronic Field Trip about the Manhattan Project, where student reporters visit the first industrial-scale nuclear reactor in Washington state and the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico. You can also find this same archive along with other great content, on the Museum’s YouTube Channel.
WWII Flipgrid Disco Library
WWII Flipgrid Disco Library: The Museum has recently partnered with Flipgrid and is one of the first few Museum content partners on their Disco Library. We have 31 topics and counting on a range of subjects related to the war. If your field trips have now been canceled, you can still have your students interact with a Museum educator by having them upload video questions to Flipgrid. We’ll be moderating that grid and posting responses to select questions daily.
Get in the Scrap!
Get in the Scrap!: Inspired by the scrapping efforts of students during World War II, Get in the Scrap! is a national service learning project for students in grades 4-8 all about recycling and energy conservation. Your students have the power to affect positive change on the environment; much like students 70 years ago played a positive role on the Home Front in securing victory in WWII.
Live Webinars: Over the next several weeks, join The National WWII Museum for a series of K–12 webinars broadcasting live each Thursday at 12:00 p.m. central time. Students and their families will meet Museum Educators who will teach important lessons from definitive moments in World War II. You’ll also participate in live demonstrations, Q&A, and decision-making scenarios. Set your calendar and make plans to join us!
The 320th Barrage Balloon Battalion: The African American Heroes of the D-Day Invasion
February 17 | 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m. (CT)
The Woman Behind the Camera in World War II
March 31 | 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m. (CT)
Meet the Young Adult Author Deborah Hopkinson
April 28 | 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m. (CT)
Korematsu v. United States: Japanese American Incarceration in WWII
May 12 | 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m. (CT)
The History of European Antisemitism
May 18 | 4:00 p.m.–5:30 p.m. (CT)
Miss a webinar? Check out all previous webinars on the Museum’s YouTube channel.
At Home Science for Kids
Check out this PDF for fun at-home activities that tie STEM concepts to WWII history. These activities are great for kids in 3rd to 8th grade, but can be adapted up or down.
Elementary Lessons and Activities
Simple to follow, at-home lessons and activity resources for students in grades Kindergarten through 6th grade. Most activities are interdisciplinary, linking history with various other subjects (ELA, Math, Arts).
Greetings from Far Away-Writing Informal Letters with V-Mail
Service on Celluloid
Service on Celluloid: Listen to a podcast brought to you by The National WWII Museum that takes a deep look at depictions of World War II on film over the last 70-plus years. In-house experts at the Museum, along with special guests, hold lively debates on the historical merits of treasured classics and smaller films alike. Pairing the films with the podcast episodes makes for a fun at-home activity that teachers, students, and parents can all engage with.
Interactive Video Series
Check out this interactive video series for students! Each video features a different topic, and interactive features in which students can drag and drop, answer questions, and interact with the content. Videos will be released November 2020, February 2021 and April 2021. Note: for optimal viewing experience, we recommend accessing these programs on a desktop computer, laptop, or tablet device.
All Around the World: Exploring the Ecosystems of World War II
November 5 | 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m. (CT)
Online Resource Sites
Along with lesson plans and educational resources, The National WWII Museum also offers online microsites full of primary source materials and archival images.
Guests of the Third Reich
Guests of the Third Reich: A special exhibit website that details the stories and experiences of American Prisoners of War (POWs) in Europe. Including maps, photographs, and journals kept by American POWs, this website provides first-person perspectives on capture, life in the camps, and the eventual liberation of American servicemembers imprisoned by Nazi forces.
See You Next Year!
See You Next Year!: Access over 40 digitized highschool yearbooks from WWII that reveal the subtle and outright ways the war affected life on the Home Front. These yearbooks provide unique glimpses into the lives of American high school students who confronted and worked to support the realities brought forth by WWII.
Barbed Wire to Battlefields: Japanese American Experiences in WWII
Barbed Wire to Battlefields: Japanese American Experiences in WWII: This microsite details the personal accounts of Americans of Japanese descent who fell under the suspicion of the general American public and formal incarceration by the federal government in the days following Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor. As roughly 120,000 Japanese Americans endured incarceration in internment camps across the country, 33,000 Japanese Americans still answered the call to serve the United States in World War II. Photographs, oral histories, and archival materials help to tell these stories.
We’re here to help you in these challenging and new circumstances. Follow us on our social media platforms to connect directly with the WWII Media and Education Center staff!
Follow us on Twitter: @WWIIEducation.
Are you a K-12 teacher? Join our closed Facebook page created just for teachers to share and discuss resources related to the history of World War II: K-12 Education at The National WWII Museum.
For more information or questions about our online resources and programs, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.