Transatlantic Slavery Enquiry Day (KS3-4)


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Essential information

Key stage: 
Key Stage 3, Key Stage 4
School subject: 
National Maritime Museum
Session times: 
Tuesdays at 10.15 -14.00
Session price: 

Explore the history and legacies of the transatlantic slave trade using digital devices to gather evidence in the Museum, viewing rare manuscripts and handling original objects.

The National Maritime Museum’s Learning team has unparalleled experience of teaching the sensitive history of Transatlantic Slavery.

During this study day, we draw on the Museum’s collections to discuss the development of the Atlantic slave trade, life in West Africa, the transportation of enslaved peoples and the realities of life on the plantations. We also explore Abolition and the motivations of those involved.

Examining original account books and logs from slave ships, inventories from plantations and replica artefacts, and then exploring the Museum's collections as part of focused enquiries, we debate the effectiveness and limitations of historical sources to reveal events and the lives of real people..

Throughout the day, students use historical enquiry and critical-thinking skills, including gathering their own evidence and using it to reach conclusions.

PDF icon Key Stage 3: Transatlantic slavery outline.pdf

Booking a session

Sessions cannot be booked online, this is always done via an email or phone enquiry in the first instance.

To book a visit telephone 020 8312 6608 or e-mail

National Maritime Museum and the Queen's House schools booking information

Pre-visit preparation and information

Curriculum links: Primarily History, but including links to Citizenship and the concepts of identity and diversity.

Throughout the course of the day the following themes are covered:

  • Africa before the Transatlantic Slave Trade
  • Trade and Commerce
  • The ‘Middle Passage’
  • Plantation conditions
  • Enslavement and resistance
  • Abolition

Students will participate in activities which will encourage them to formulate their own ideas and opinions.

Upon arrival you will be given a timetable for the day’s activities. However, some prior preparation would also be of use in order to maximise their learning experience.

Resources and links

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