How to prepare good interview questions

A group of children explore the best ways to prepare interview questions for a World War Two history film project.

Under the guidance of BBC Producer, Steve Humphries, our young film crew are researching and preparing questions for their interview with World War Two veteran, Fergus Anckorn. They have been given a copy of his autobiography so that they can find out as much as they can about him, as this will enable them to ask better questions. As they read through his story, they pick out interesting details to ask him about. They also watch an archive documentary from 1939 called 'The First Days', which is about life in Britain at the beginning of World War Two and gives an insight into life at that time. While the crew continue their research, we see two clips from interviews made by children around the country as part of the BBC's Make Film - Greatest Generation project. Both of the clips have used archive research to prompt good open questions. The first uses artefacts, including films and photographs from before World War Two and the second focuses on air raids and shelters.

Teacher Notes

This clip could be used to introduce the concept of using different source types. Students could sort sources into primary and secondary, discussing their validity. Pupils could conduct their own research into a person or topic and develop questions from that; ensuring they consider the main themes of their films or interview at all times and how their questions fit into this.

Curriculum Notes

This clip will be relevant for teaching Media Studies, English and History at Key Stage 2 in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and at Second Level in Scotland.