This Memorial Box explores the Australian experience of the Second World War - the war that seemed to affect every aspect of life as Australia itself came under attack. Almost a million Australians served, at home and abroad; on land, at sea, or in the air. Their stories come to life as you unpack the real and replica Second World War items in this Box.
Australia in the Second World War Memorial Box 4
Note to the reader: The objects and case studies in this Box tell stories of service during conflicts. Students may feel sad after reading some of the case studies. Encourage them to tell a teacher or trusted adult if they require support. There are many mental health organisations that they can talk to if they need help. Teachers may wish to be sensitive to those students who have personal experience with conflict, family members who are veterans, or parents serving overseas in war zones.
What's in the Box?
Ideas for using this Box
Discuss the objects with your class and ask questions about the size, colour, weight, or materials. Does it look old or new, and how can you tell? Consider its possible use, who might have used it and what it might have meant to them. Would its value have changed over time? Is it a primary or secondary source?
- Use the objects to create your own display, with these past exhibitions as inspiration.
- Find out more about the Australians who served in the Second World War using these publications, and put together an imaginative response based on their experiences.
- Use the resource A very special day to find out why the Memorial collects things, and start your own collection to commemorate your family, class, or school.
- Plan a ceremony using the guidelines found in Their spirit, our history or watch the Memorial’s Last Post Ceremony.
- Invite veterans to speak to your class about their experience, or listen to some stories online.
- Search the Memorial’s collection and explore more photographs, works of art, and objects related to the Second World War.
For more information and activities related to the Second World War, visit the DVA Anzac Portal
Before you start
- Read over the Memorial Box risk assessment.
- Check the contents of the Box against the enclosed inventory (and again after use). Report any damaged or missing items to your state agent.
- Wear the enclosed gloves when handling the objects and wash the gloves before the box is returned.
Where to get this Box
Memorial Boxes are held by various agents across Australia, and are free to borrow (though freight charges may apply if you have the Box sent to you). Check the list of agents and find the one closest to you.