American History.

In 1620 a group of religious separatists had to make a life-changing decision: continue to be persecuted in Europe or rebuild their society somewhere else. They decided to board the Mayflower and embark on a journey that would change the course of history forever.    

‘As we approach the coast of America, we have some big decisions to make…’    

The Mayflower story allows your class to explore a turbulent time in England. Set between the Gunpowder plot and the English civil war, the country was being defined by the religious morals and the newfound power that everyday people were claiming.   

Your class will assume the role of the religious separatists. As a new society, they will be encouraged to:  

– Discuss their expectations of their new homes.  

– Understand the religious and political context of their journey.  

– Demonstrate practical skills onboard the ship.   

– Propose and debate the new laws to abide by.  

– Empathise with Native American groups and consider their impact on marginalised societies.

This experience takes place on the Mayflower itself. Additional resources about the Native American tribes are available.

This began as a bespoke project as part of Nottinghamshire’s Mayflower commemorations in 2020.

Your school may be eligible for a free workshop to discover local heritage. Please email for more information.

Photo location: Bassetlaw Museum, Retford

Research trip was funded by Nottinghamshire County Council and organised by Nottingham Roosevelt Memorial Travelling Scholarship in 2020.