Schools Information

There is a lot to see and do on your visit to the D-Day Museum. Please see further down the page to download trails and for information on the exhibitions. However to make the most of your visit you may wish to book one of our specialist led workshops about the Home Front, details below.

The Home Front Experience

Find out what everyday life was like for families during the Second World War in this lively, interactive session.

  • Investigate original artefacts and documents including gas masks, items used by Air Raid Wardens, clothing and domestic objects.
  • Explore the different roles people played on the home front.
  • Learn about rationing and evacuation.
  • Use role play to simulate an air raid and find out how people prepared for them.

The session looks at many aspects of life on the home front and is perfect for groups starting and finishing their work on the topic.  
Please note that in November 2016 and March 2017 the Home Front Experience will be delivered at nearby Portsmouth Museum whilst D-Day Museum is being transformed and updated.

Age Suitable for Key Stage 1 and 2
Venue Portsmouth Museum (2016 / 2017 only)
Times Workshops start at 10.15am, 11.30am and 1.00pm and last for one hour.

2016: November 1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 9, 10 & 11
2017: March 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16 & 17          


£3 per pupil + VAT for all schools
Minimum charge per workshop £40 + VAT
Price includes admission to the museum

Numbers 30 pupils maximum per workshop.  Groups can enjoy self-guided visits to related museum displays before or after their workshop, including Edward King's 1940s paintings of Portsmouth buildings damaged by Blitz bombing raids plus photographs, archives and objects relating to life in Portsmouth during the Second World War.

Trails for schools

Please click on the links below to download trails to bring with you on your visit.

Secondary schools

Primary schools

Click here for our Autumn / Winter 2015 - 2016 Newsletter for Schools.

Booking a Group Visit

For all enquiries and group visits please telephone our admin team on 023 9283 4744 or 023 9283 4737 (Monday - Friday) or click here to email us, stating clearly your name, school contact details, number/age of children, which museum/exhibition/workshop you are interested in and your preferred dates/times. For a list of all admission charges click here.

Length of Stay and Group Sizes

Unless you have booked a led session the typical visit time by a group is 1½ -2 hours. The recommended maximum number arriving at any one time is 60. Once in the museum you will need to split into smaller groups to explore the displays. When school groups are in the museum, the behaviour of the children or students is the responsibility of the teacher in charge.


Payment for your group booking is made on the day of your visit. Cheques payable to 'Portsmouth City Council', Charge cards: Delta or Switch. Credit cards: MasterCard or Visa. Please see above for workshop charges.


The unique feature of the D-Day Museum is the magnificent Overlord Embroidery that tells the story of the Allied invasion of Normandy in 1944, just as 900 years earlier the story of William the Conqueror's invasion of England was told in the Bayeux Tapestry. It tells the complete story of the D-Day operation, from the planning and preparation of the invasion to victory in the Battle of Normandy in August 1944. A 30 minute Soundguide commentary (in English, French or German) on the Embroidery is available at a small additional charge. An archive film show with commentaries in English, French, German, Dutch and Spanish gives a vivid impression of the wartime atmosphere and emotions.

The style of presentation around the museums is lively with audio-visuals, sound effects and several reconstructed scenes. These include a 1940's dining room, an air-raid shelter, a factory scene, an invasion preparation area and the D-Day control room at Southwick House. Walk through a Dakota aircraft during a parachute drop followed by a scene of a crashed Horsa Glider unloading a Jeep. Then inside a German bunker to see the invasion fleet approaching and onto the landing beaches and board a genuine landing craft.

Wonder Boxes - the new-look loans collection from Portsmouth Museums

The first phase of our review of the Museum Loans Collection is complete and the first batch loan items, rebranded as Wonder Boxes, are available for use.

Our fabulous loans boxes are the perfect stimulus for creative work across the curriculum, including science, art & design, literacy and history.  Bring a little awe and wonder into your classroom with bird, mammal, amphibian and reptile specimens or skulls and skeletons.  Or bring the past to life with high quality model dinosaurs and original and replica artefacts illustrating life in Ancient Egypt.

Click here to download the latest edition of the illustrated Wonder Box Catalogue.

The catalogue lists all of the loans boxes currently available and explains how to book a box and the Terms and Conditions under which the loans scheme operates.  New boxes will be added to the catalogue as the review process continues.

National Curriculum – A Broad and Balanced Approach

The D-Day Museum is a versatile resource for creative work across the curriculum. Some suggestions are outlined below but there are many other possibilities.

Art & Design 
Use a range of techniques to record experiences and observations and explore ideas e.g. sketch books, journals & photographs; use a range of materials and techniques to produce work in response to the museum and its exhibits; evaluate the work of artists, craft makers and designers e.g. Overlord Embroidery, posters, costumes and uniforms, equipment.

Design & Technology
Design, make and evaluate functional and appealing products e.g. vehicles and equipment (KS1-3); evaluate the work of past and present designers – understand developments in Design & Technology, its impact on individuals, society and the environment and the responsibilities of designers, engineers and technologists (KS3); evaluate and recreate recipes for cooking with wartime rations.

Add to word lists and extend vocabulary; practise and develop speaking and listening skills by asking questions, listening to others, participating in discussions, expressing opinions and exploring ideas, making presentations, participation in role play and performances etc; read, understand and evaluate text written for a variety of purposes and audiences e.g. narratives, descriptions of real events, poetry, letters and diaries, propaganda, museum labels and promotional material, reviews and journalism; write clear and accurate text for a range of purposes and audiences, adapting language and style as appropriate ( see examples above); plan, draft, edit and proofread text.

Interpret a range of sources of geographical information including maps and aerial photographs; communicate geographical information in a variety of ways including maps, numbers and quantities and writing.

Practise and develop key historical enquiry skills – asking questions, identifying and analysing different sources of evidence (objects; letters, diaries and documents; oral histories; photographs; artworks; media reports etc), thinking critically, understanding and gaining historical perspective. The Museum can support local studies on the Second World War at KS2 and KS3 and KS3 projects on the Second World War linked to work on the challenges for Britain, Europe and the wider world 1901 to the present day.

Counting, measuring, solving practical problems – number of people, boats, planes etc on Overlord Embroidery panels, numbers of troops, number of tanks on landing crafts, food supplies and rations; geometry - recognising and naming 2D and 3D shapes in Overlord Embroidery and equipment; statistics – record, organise and interpret information and data about numbers of troops, vehicles and equipment.

Recognise how music is affected by its context, including date of composition and performance e.g. making fun of political figures, boosting morale and encouraging national pride. Read and learn war time songs and consider lyrics, melody and rhythm


We look forward to welcoming you soon!
To make a booking call 023 9283 4744 or 023 9283 4737 (Monday - Friday)