We’ve launched our ‘Secrets of the Magna Carta’ educational project!

Magna Carta may be an 800-year-old piece of parchment, but today many people think that it is more relevant than ever. The Great Charter spelt out the rights of citizens and the limits to a government's power over them. With the expansion of government in the last hundred years, and political decisions affecting every part of our lives, do we need to look again at what this old parchment can tell us?

In association with WAG TV and the John Templeton Foundation, the Adam Smith Institute is proud to launch our Secrets of the Magna Carta educational project. We’ve created teaching materials to accompany two award-winning documentaries narrated by Downton Abbey’s Hugh Bonneville. They feature world experts: lawyers like US and UK supreme court justices, distinguished historians, librarians in charge of conserving the documents themselves, and policy commentators from both sides of the Atlantic.

Aimed at GCSE and A Level students, the project makes available a set of videos, teaching guides, and books to teachers and students who want to know why Magna Carta still matters to ordinary people today.

Our free Magna Carta lesson plans are tailored to UK exam board specifications for History, Politics, and Citizenship. They contain everything a teacher needs to engage, educate, and excite GCSE and A Level students: videos, quizzes, key questions, reading extracts, ideas for class activities, pre-reading, and more.

We are also in the process of translating the documentaries and teaching materials: expanding the project to the U.S., Europe, Latin America, India, and beyond. Although Magna Carta may have been sealed at a meadow in Runnymede, the principles that the Great Charter enshrined are of vital importance around the world.

Find out more by visiting the project’s website here.