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Teacher guide Ground zero 1945, a schoolboy's story

TLF ID M006713

This is a powerful collection of online materials focusing on the illustrated testimony of atomic bomb survivor Akihiro Takahashi who was a schoolboy when the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. The materials consist of an introduction to Takahashi and his work for peace; four Visual Narratives of Takahashi's experiences illustrated by Goro Shikoku; six videos of Takahashi describing what occurred and reflecting on what it meant; and a gallery of all 36 illustrations. Teachers are advised to preview this collection as the sensitive and disturbing nature of the testimony and illustrations requires that they be used with respect and care.

Educational details

Educational value
  • The testimony of Akihiro Takahashi (1931-) is a pivotal primary source for any historical study that includes understanding the consequences of the atomic bomb for the people of Hiroshima. It is highly significant for years 11 and 12 Modern History and for year 10 History, especially for the World War II depth study that calls for an examination of significant events of the War, including the use of the atomic bomb.
  • Takahashi's illustrated testimony is presented in Visual Naratives, image galleries and in videos (see dropdown menu under Ground Zero 1945 II). The Visual Narratives include Goro Shikoku's illustrations and written text in kanji and hiragana and in English translation. The first set of videos also use Shikoku's illustrations but are presented by Takahashi himself speaking in Japanese, with English subtitles.
  • The second set of subtitled videos are of Takahashi speaking to the camera. In the first he gives a detailed summary of the atom bombs dropped on Japan, their uranium and plutonium composition, their consequences, and the American motivation in dropping them. The second video presents his thinking about the negative legacy of the 20th century, including its nuclear arsenal.
Year level

10; 11; 12

Other details

  • Author
  • Person: Akihiro Takahashi
  • Description: Author
  • Contributor
  • Name: Education Services Australia
  • Organization: Education Services Australia
  • Description: Data manager
  • Address: VIC, AUSTRALIA
  • URL:
  • Person: Akihiro Takahashi
  • Description: Author
  • Person: Yuki Tanaka
  • Description: Translator
  • Person: Goro Shikoku
  • Description: Illustrator
  • Publisher
  • Name: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Organization: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Description: Publisher
  • Address: Massachusetts, UNITED STATES
  • URL:
  • Resource metadata contributed by
  • Name: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Organisation: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Address: AUSTRALIA
  • URL:
Access profile
  • Generic
Learning Resource Type
  • Online
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology © 2008 Visualizing Cultures. Creative Commons-Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0.