Belfast during wwii

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  • 1. Leaving Certificate History Belfast during World War II: helping students to assess historical significance http://pdst.ie/postprimary
  • 2. Helping students to assess historical significance • Exploring historical significance of Belfast during World War II • Increasing focus on students’ ability to think critically • The enquiry-focused approach: rationale • Card-sorting and critical skills (Booklet, pages 29-32)
  • 3. The enquiry-focused approach Aims • To give a clear focus to a series of lessons • To clarify for all concerned what the learning purposes are • To ensure that the sequence of lessons is leading to improved understanding on the part of the students
  • 4. Helping students to assess historical significance: five Rs • Revealing • Remarked upon • Remembered • Resonant • Resulting in change Which are most applicable to Belfast in World War II?
  • 5. Belfast during World War II A two-pronged enquiry to bring the significance of particular events and developments to the fore: o In what significant ways did World War II affect Belfast? o In what significant ways did Belfast affect the conduct of World War II?
  • 6. Belfast during World War II: an overview • Involvement: why? Potential contribution? Implications of involvement? • Contrasts with other major UK cities? Political leadership? • Approach to security? Belfast blitz, 1941 • Strategic importance? Importance of industries? Other boosts to employment? • Political impact of involvement in war?
  • 7. Belfast during World War II: glossary Developing students’ historical literacy • Key terms: ARP (Air Raid precautions) warden, balloon barrage, Battle of the Atlantic, Belfast blitz, blackout regulations, bombs, censorship, civil defence, ‘ditchers’, evacuees, identity cards, Luftwaffe offensive, munitions firms, rationing, reconnaissance aircraft
  • 8. Belfast during World War II: timeline • 1939 – Spring 1941: political leadership? Role of John MacDermott? Inadequacy of defences? • 1941, April-May: Belfast blitz – Scale? Casualties? Damage? • 1942: Arrival of American troops • 1943: change in political leadership? • 1944: Following D-Day, decline in number of US troops • 1945: Churchill’s speech acknowledges NI role
  • 9. Belfast during World War II: biographical notes • John Miller Andrews • Richard Dawson Bates • Basil Brooke • James Craig • John MacDermott • William Joyce • Wilfred Spender
  • 10. Belfast during World War II: useful websites http://multitext.ucc.ie/d/The_BlitzBelfast_during _the_second_World_War http://www.secondworldwarni.org/default. aspx?id=2&themeid=4
  • 11. Belfast during World War II: an enquiry • In what significant ways did World War II affect Belfast? • In what significant ways did Belfast affect the conduct of World War II? • A possible hook: http://www.u.tv/blitz/ • Questions and issues for discussion
  • 12. Belfast during World War II • Enquiry 1: In what significant ways did World War II affect Belfast? • Points to note • Related sources
  • 13. http://www.secondworldwarni.org/associatedImage.aspx?pagerecordid=123
  • 14. http://www.secondworldwarni.org/associatedImage.aspx?pagerecordid=217
  • 15. Belfast during World War II Source 1d Belfast is mourning deeply its hundreds of dead in last Wednesday’s air raid. A most pitiable sight to-day was the efforts of many of the bereaved to identify their loved ones amid the bodies collected in St. George’s Market. The Speaker of the Northern House of Commons (the Right Hon. H.G.H. Mulholland) was one of the casualties of the air raid. He was on fire-watching duty at a large industrial concern when a splinter of glass injured one of his eyes. He is making good progress and hopes to be about as usual in a few days. Irish Times, 21 April, 1941
  • 16. http://www.secondworldwarni.org/details.aspx?id=0&pagerecordid=376
  • 17. Belfast during World War II Source 1f Belfast’s second night of terror was even worse than its precursor of three weeks ago, although it is hoped that the casualty roll will not be so heavy as it was on that occasion. The smoke was merciful. The discomfort of it mattered little when it hid so much that was not good to look upon. Large areas of the city were cordoned off and guarded by military. No one passed those cordons; for, with falling masonry, the danger of unexploded bombs and recurring outbreaks of fire, it was as much as life was worth. Whole streets were thus cut off, and hundreds of people who had no work to go to walked miles through the smarting smoke and the grime to see the ruin left by the morning’s bombardment Irish Times, 6 May, 1941
  • 18. Belfast during World War II http://www.secondworldwarni.org/associatedImage.aspx?pagerecordid=146 Source 1g The arrival of the Americans in Belfast caused a lot of bad feeling amongst the men. The Americans were so glamorous compared to the locals who had suffered four years of shortages. http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/ww2peopleswar/stories/24/a2094824.shtml
  • 19. http://www.secondworldwarni.org/associatedImage.aspx?pagerecordid=147
  • 20. Belfast during World War II Source 1h Douglas Harkness recalled a conversation with a Labour MP, Tom Johnston, after the 1945 Westminster election. Johnston stated ‘that the attitude in his party was that Northern Ireland had stood by the United Kingdom during the war in sharp contrast to Eire which had denied the UK the use of ... the ports, ... and that whatever views the Labour Party might have had with regard to the Irish Free State in pre-war years ... the Labour movement would never forget what Northern Ireland had contributed to the United Kingdom war effort and ... would solidly support [it]. Brian Barton, Northern Ireland in the Second World War. Ulster Historical Foundation, 1995, p.141
  • 21. Belfast during World War II • Enquiry 2: In what significant ways did Belfast affect the conduct of World War II? • Points to note • Related sources
  • 22. Belfast during World War II Source 2a: NI Governor thanks Belfast Harbour Commissioners Located right on the flank of the immediate exit to the Atlantic, Belfast and Londonderry played a very important part in the vital defence of convoys. How necessary was that task we may see by the following figures: no less than 85,493 ships were escorted in ocean convoys during the war, of which only 649 were lost ... By having this fine Harbour so well equipped and available as an important War base, the Harbour Commissioners should be proud of their foresight and work. Brian Barton, Northern Ireland in the Second World War. Ulster Historical Foundation, 1995, p.141
  • 23. Belfast during World War II Secondary source 1 Its [the Short and Harland aircraft factory’s] reorganisation – it was taken over by the government in March 1943 – contributed to a marked improvement in performance. ... Cumulatively [over the course of the war] it had completed 1,200 Stirling bombers and 125 Sunderland flying boats, sufficient for over 100 squadrons, and carried out repairs to roughly 3,000 heavy, medium and light aircraft. Brian Barton, Northern Ireland in the Second World War. Ulster Historical Foundation, 1995, p.81
  • 24. Belfast during World War II http://multitext.ucc.ie/d/A_Shorts_Sunderland_flying_boat_Belfast_Lough_1940
  • 25. Belfast during World War II Secondary source 2 During the Second World War the British developed a network of listening stations (called Y Stations) throughout the United Kingdom. Two such stations existed in Northern Ireland – one at Ramore Head, Portrush and the other at Gilnahirk in east Belfast. The purpose of these stations was to listen in to the communications being transmitted by the Germans, record the messages and then send them to a special team of experts as quickly as possible. http://www.secondworldwarni.org/details.aspx?id=2&pagerecordid=1419&themeid=3
  • 26. Belfast during World War II Source 2b Just before the Invasion of Normandy ... I turned 16, and cycled out of Belfast and up the North Coast with my friend Barton McKee for a week's Youth Hostelling, which came and went too soon. Cycling back towards Belfast, we rounded the Blagh-hole on the coast road, and were completely astounded by the sight of our Belfast Lough, totally crammed with ships. There were heavily camouflaged naval escorts and a big number of cargo ships, presumably all carrying equipment and armour for the invasion, and all so tightly packed in, that it looked to us as if you could have walked straight across them and into Bangor without getting your shoes wet. http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/ww2peopleswar/stories/21/a4565621.shtml
  • 27. http://www.secondworldwarni.org/associatedImage.aspx?pagerecordid=193
  • 28. Belfast during World War II • Card sorting and critical skills • Rationale • Potential for literacy development
  • 29. Group activity Critical skills exercise
  • 30. Belfast during World War II • Historians’ views (Secondary sources A-D) • Interrogating the historians (p.34)
  • 31. In what significant ways did World War II affect Belfast? In what significant ways did Belfast affect the conduct of World War II? Your conclusions on the enquiry Booklet p.34
  • 32. http://pdst.ie/postprimary