Understanding transatlantic slavery, key stage 3

This object handling session introduces students to Liverpool’s involvement in transatlantic slavery. It looks at fundamental aspects of transatlantic slavery and its impact on the lives of those involved.

Funding for school visits

We at National Museums Liverpool consider this is an essential education for all young people. Should you feel that your class would benefit from a visit to the International Slavery Museum to do this workshop with teaching from our specialist team, but for your school cost is a barrier, please get in touch with our Box Office team on 0151 478 4444 or email

Thanks to generous support from The Zochonis Charitable Trust, The Ravensdale Trust, The Elizabeth Rathbone Charitable Trust, The PH Holt Foundation and The Duchy of Lancaster Benevolent Fund, we are able to offer funding to support a limited number of schools in working with us.

iron shackles in museum display case

Key facts

  • Suitable for: Key Stage 3
  • Subjects: Citizenship, History, Personal, social, health and economic education
  • Session type: Museum led
  • Duration: 60 minutes
  • Class size(maximum): 30
  • Venue: International Slavery Museum
  • £90 including VAT per session
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Workshop details

Transatlantic slavery was responsible for the forced migration of between 12 to 15 million people from Africa to the Americas from the middle of the 15th century to the end of the 19th century. This session introduces students to Liverpool’s involvement in the trade, to fundamental aspects of transatlantic slavery, and its impact on the lives of those involved.

Students work in five small groups to look at different facets of transatlantic slavery: traditional life in West Africa, forced migration, enslavement and life on the plantation, ways that people resisted as well as abolition movements. Each group uses different sets of artefacts to aid and deepen their understanding of this complex and difficult history.

'Understanding transatlantic slavery' also enables students to develop presentation skills as groups are invited to present their findings and students listen and learn from each other.

This unique learning experience illustrates the massive impact of transatlantic slavery on the world and the ways it still impacts on many lives.