Enquiry 1: An unpopular war?

A two-lesson enquiry for KS3 by Jennifer McCullough

The Enquiries

On each of the next 8 pages of this module, you will find eight fully resourced enquiries for use in the classroom from Key Stages 3-5. These are the outcomes produced by the teacher fellows, starting here with Jennifer McCullough's lesson sequence aimed at Key Stage 3. 


Why did Britain go to war (again) in 1950?

This enquiry has been designed to help teachers of Key Stage 3 integrate the Korean War into a wider scheme of work on the Cold War.

After covering, in outline, the main events of the war and Britain’s involvement, it then explores the war as it was perceived in Britain.

It focuses particularly on opposition to the war from a number of individuals, investigating the reasons for that opposition and how their views were received by the media, politicians and the public at large.

Key areas of focus

  • Introductory background knowledge: the causes and the course of the Korean War.
  • The British reaction to the outbreak of war in Korea – how it was covered in the news and what this tells us about the British public’s knowledge of the situation in Korea.
  • Key groups and individuals who opposed the Korean War, the differing reasons for their opposition and the nature of their opposition.
  • The way that these individuals and groups were treated by politicians and the media and the influence (or lack thereof) that they had on wider public opinion.
  • Reach a judgement about the ‘significance’ of opposition to the war in Britain.

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