As part of our History Curriculum at Merry Hill, we have been thinking in depth about Remembrance. In particular Year 2 have been focusing on the following two questions:
1)Who and what do we remember on Poppy day?
2) What can we learn about the past from our local war memorial?
We started our week by looking at the following image:
The children used the clues in the image to think about who we are remembering on Poppy day. We talked about how the poppy reminds us of the soldiers, airmen and sailors who died during the war:
“We think about people in the war”
“Soldiers who have died”
“My granny is 90, she remembers the war”
The children acknowledged that there are wars going on around the world at the moment and we discussed the importance of remembering all those who are involved and affected by the impact of them.
On Wednesday 8th November Padre Nicoll, who serves in the RAF as a chaplain, came to school to take an assembly to help us think about this more. Parents of our Forces children who also serve in the Army, Royal Navy or RAF came along, some in uniform. Padre Nicoll helped us to think through ‘What?’ we remember, ‘Why?’ we remember and ‘Who?’ we remember. We were also fascinated to ask some of the grown ups about life in the Armed Forces.
Year 2 then had the opportunity to walk down School Lane to visit the war memorial, helping us to answer our second question:
What can we learn about the past from our local war memorial?
Padre Nicoll explained what happens at local war memorials all around the country on Remembrance Day. We looked carefully at the war memorial, which is stone and carved in the shape of an angel holding a wreath. He explained that the names of men who fought in the wars (only men at that time) were written in stone on the reverse of the memorial. He read out some famous poems and explained that a bugle often plays. We then had a go at being silent for one minute to remember. Lastly our Forces ambassadors laid a poppy wreath at the foot of the memorial.
Before we went back to school we walked around the back of the memorial to look at all the names that were carved into the stone. We were surprised at how many there were. We know it is very important to look back to the past and remember those who gave their lives in war.
Here is a poem that Padre Nicoll read to us by Laurence Binyon entitled ‘For the Fallen’:
They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them.