Days to remember

21st May 2004 at 01:00
DAYS THAT SHOOK THE WORLD. By Hugo Davenport. BBC Books, pound;19.99

DAYS THAT SHOOK THE WORLD SERIES:

THE FREEING OF NELSON MANDELA. By Liz Gogerly

TIANANMEN SQUARE. By Jane Bingham. Wayland, pound;11.99 each. www.hodderwayland.co.uk

DATES WITH HISTORY SERIES:

11 NOVEMBER 1918, THE WORLD WAR I ARMISTICE. By John Malam

21 JULY 1969, THE FIRST MAN ON THE MOON. By John and Hilary Malam

10 NOVEMBER 1989, THE FALL OF THE BERLIN WALL. By Brian Williams

11 SEPTEMBER 2001, ATTACK ON AMERICA, By Brian Williams. Cherrytree Books pound;7.99 each www.evansbooks.com

Days That Shook the World, broadcast on TV last year, gave us many hours of documentary footage to use in classrooms. But the hardback book produced alongside the series remains an excellent classroom reference resource for all age groups. Using a thematic basis, it covers centuries of history and encourages links and understanding for the students. For example, the chapter on Civil Rights begins with Roman slavery in 73bc and runs right through to 1990ad with Nelson Mandela's release. It includes sections on the Triangle of Trade, West Indies' attempts to achieve freedom, emancipation, the American Civil War, Scramble for Africa, Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks. Sections within the chapters give an hour-by-hour diary of specific days, such as April 4, 1968 when Martin Luther King was assassinated, containing useful stimulus material for lessons, for example, giving Year 9 students a copy of the chronology diary of the assassination of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand could be a good hook into the causes of the Great War.

Tiananmen Square and The Freeing of Nelson Mandela in the "Days That Shook the World" series from Hodder Wayland are in-depth studies on specific events or individuals. Organised into moment-in-time sections, with eyewitness accounts and excellent images, the books provide superb references to these key events. They would support the KS3 World study after 1900 option, but would be equally useful for KS4 students who, like mine, study China or South Africa, as they are written in an easy, accessible style. A further bonus is the reference sections at the back of the book, where students can use a glossary and find relevant books films.

Similarly, the Dates With History series provides an excellent depth study for each of the topics. World War I Armistice, The Fall of the Berlin Wall, First Man on the Moon and Attack on America. Scientists will also want to buy the 21 July 1969, First Man on the Moon book, as it gives superb details of the space projects, successes and disasters. I particularly liked the way the authors have given the long-term and short-term causes of the special date, and then given an update on the current position for each event.

Heather Scott is senior strategic leader: innovation and development, Challenge College, Bradford

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