China at KS3 and KS4

Discover the history and culture of China, including the first emperor and his terracotta army, the Great Wall of China, everyday life and the three religions.

China loan boxes

Tang pottery tomb guardian

Bring China into your classroom with this set of replicas and other items based on objects in the British Museum's collection, covering themes such as food and drink, celebration and decoration. This boxes come with information and notes for teachers.

loan box slideshow (ppt 923kb)
loan box handout (pdf 318kb)  

Loans are free. To borrow a box, contact the Schools Team on 020 7323 8510/8850 or

Resources for visits

China: Journey to the East

Roof tileAn exhibition touring the UK from 2009 exploring one of the most important and influential civilisations in world history.

Detail from cloisonne jar

Chinese Art

Jade jewellery, lacquer boxes, porcelain vases, bronze weapons. Find out about Chinese art materials and techniques.
Download Word (1.2Mb)  pdf (714Kb) 

Online resources

Budai figureExplore the collection: ancient China
Explore the collection: imperial China

Find detailed information, background articles and images of many objects from the Chinese galleries.


Online tours

New year

Chinese New Year

A look at the lucky red money envelopes that are given as gifts to celebrate Chinese New Year.


Chinese jade demon mask

Chinese Jade

A selection of jade objects from the Selwyn and Ellie Alleyne Gallery (Room 33b)




Mountains and Water: Chinese Landscape Painting

A look at the tradition of Chinese landscape painting.


British Museum websites

Imperial China

Early imperial China

Find a slideshow of the Great Wall and original sources describing the first emperor's reign. Includes activities and lesson plans.

Ancient China website Ancient China

Explore a wealthy lord's tomb, watch master craftsmen at work and try your hand at silkworm farming. The staff room contains resources for teachers.


Ancient civs china screengrab

Ancient Civilisations

Explore ancient civilisations from around the world across time.



Other useful websites

Royal Academy of Arts - The Three Emperors 1662-1795

Treasures of the Silk Road at the British Museum

Dunhuang buddhist painting

The Silk Road Online
British Library education website exploring the culture of the Silk Road including travel, trade, Buddhism, medicine and book binding.

Useful books

Suitable for KS3 history

J. Brooman, Imperial China (Longman, 1992)

C. Gleisner, Imperial China (Oxford University Press, 2000)

H. Martell, Imperial China (Evans Brothers Limited, 1998)

A. Paludan, Chronicle of the Chinese Emperors (Thames and Hudson, 1998)

F. Reynoldson, Imperial China (Heinemann Educational, 1991)

A. Cotterell, Eyewitness Guide: China (Dorling Kindersley, 1994) Introduction to the history and culture of China, richly illustrated with objects in the British Museum collection.

For teachers

J. Rawson (ed.), The British Museum Book of Chinese Art (London, The British Museum Press, 1992) A comprehensive survey of British Museum Chinese objects from the Neolithic to the Modern Period.

Books which are published by the British Museum Press, can be purchased at the museum shop, online or at any bookshop.

Teachers receive a 10% discount* when they quote teacher1011 in Museum shops.

For discount online, visit and enter teacher1011 on checkout.

*Discount cannot be used in conjunction with any other offers.

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