Free learning resources from arts, cultural and heritage organisations.

Teachers' Notes

This resource was created by Yorkshire Film Archive and Leeds Museums and Galleries.

This series of films documents growing up, living, working and leisure time in Leeds from the 1930s to 1987.


A Global View:

These decades in the 20th century saw dramatic global developments as a result of technology, war and new ideologies. The 1930s saw the rise of fascism and the Spanish Civil War, while the 1940s brought the devastating impact of the Second World War and the beginning of the Cold War - a dangerous rivalry between Communist Russia and the West which lasted until 1991. The first major armed conflict of this war began in Korea in the 1950s, and tensions reached a peak in 1962 with the Cuban Missile Crisis, when Soviet nuclear-armed missiles in Cuba nearly led to nuclear warfare between America and Russia.

Also in the 1960s, the Berlin Wall was constructed, separating Communist East Germany from the West, campaigning for black rights in America gained great momentum, many African countries experienced decolonisation and the first moon landing took place. The war against Communism continued into the 1970s with Americans fighting Communists in North Vietnam, and conflict was still erupting around the globe in the 1980s, with the Falklands War between Britain and Argentina and Iraqi President Saddam Hussein launching the Iran-Iraq War. It was also during this decade that computers became increasingly mainstream, paving the way for the technological age in which we now live.


Curriculum Links

Used as a complete resource, the films cover the following:

  • KS2 &KS3 History
  • KS2 & KS3 Design technology
  • KS2 Art and Design
  • KS2 Citizenship


Discussion Ideas

  • What areas, places, buildings, people and stories of Leeds are important to you?
  • What would you include in a film that tells your story of Leeds?
  • What characters would you include in your film?
  •  What music would you use in your film?
  • Film is an important media for everyone to be able to navigate, analyse and understand.  When looking at factual films or documentaries we should always try to understand:
    • Who made the film and why?
    • What message or story was the filmmaker trying to tell?
    • Did the film give different perspectives on the subject?
    •  Are you only being told one side of a story?
    •  How do you find out what other perspectives there were/are?
    • If it is a historic film, what is different from what you see today?
    • What techniques were used to make the film – How is it filmed? What kinds of sound are used? Who are the people in the film?


Activity ideas

  • Download the British Film Institute's Framework for Film Education for detailed guidance in teaching film education.
  • You can find associated activities in the written resources linked to each film, and also in the associated Leeds Curriculum resources, listed with each film.
  • There are a whole host of ideas for working with film of all types with primary and secondary aged students in Supporting Links