Armistice Day is a time to honour and show respect to all those who served and sacrificed for the defence of the country, giving their lives for our freedom. We gathered to reflect in assembly in the Jubilee Hall, the superb musicianship of the String Quartet and Jess Morrison sounding The Last Post, calling us to attention. The school bell sounded around the campus at 10.59am, and staff and students paused to share a two minutes’ silence wherever they were to mark this poignant moment. In room 19, Head, Heidi-Jayne Boyes was joined by governor Martin Shevill, staff and students and a wreath of poppies was laid. Junior Head Girl and Deputy Head Girl followed with a reading of the poem Flanders Field by Dr John McCrae: poet, physician, author, artist and soldier during World War I. Jess Morrison was in action again, repeating her sounding of The Last Post.
Symbolic poppies, in use since 1920, have been available to wear in school. Poppies are chosen because they were the only flowers to bloom in the barren battlefields in Flanders. As well as raising funds to aid veterans of the armed services, poppy wearing is also a way to commemorate and pay respect to those we must thank as we continue to benefit from the freedoms they fought to protect.
Learning across our Junior section curriculum drew from a topical project covering ‘Benefits of Warfare’. Older Junior students learned all about the work of The Royal British Legion, Remembrance Day and hand crafted their own felt poppies. We were delighted to welcome author Peter J Murray into school to share his book ‘Poppy Warrior’, based during WW2, with Year 5 and 6. A big thanks to Peter for thoughtfully discussing his book with students and signing copies of it for them.