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War: Impact on New Zealand society and identity

New Zealand and the Second World War

During the Second World War New Zealand gave its greatest national effort – on land, sea, air and at home. In this session students will consider how New Zealand’s involvement in the Second World War has shaped the lives and identity of individuals, communities and our nation.

Through hands on experiences with WWII objects and ephemera, students will learn about the daily life of the New Zealand soldier and the impact the war had on other individuals.

Objects are used to encourage students to think critically, ask questions and draw conclusions.

This session will cover:

  • the political forces that led to war being declared and how New Zealand came to be involved
  • the role of New Zealanders at home and at war in a major global conflict​
  • the different technologies and equipment used by the soldiers and how this differed from the First World War
  • the post-war impact of WWII on New Zealand society and identity
  • the function of war memorials today.