March 11 2014 Latest news:
Beth Wyatt, Reporter
Friday, January 31, 2014
Life on the battlefields of the First World War has been brought to life by a group of schoolchildren.
Year Nine pupils from the Drapers’ Academy created their own trench models during the Christmas holidays, with their results since put on display for all to see.
The designs include models of soldiers, crosses to mark their graves and the barbed wire of No Man’s Land.
The three winners were Joshua Weatherley-Keep, Sian Moynihan and Tom Hudson.
History teacher Lisa Little called the work “outstanding”.
Year Nine students at the school, of Settle Road, Harold Hill, began studying the conflict in September, which marks its 100th anniversary this year.
They have learnt about its causes, the nature of trench warfare and what life was like on the home front.
Pupils also wrote letters as British soldiers, to extend their knowledge on historic warfare as well as to develop an empathy for the suffering those who fought faced.
Mrs Little said: “Pupils are always fascinated to learn about life in the trenches of the First World War, but the centenary provides a great opportunity because by empathising with the varied experiences of soldiers, they can get a truer understanding of the past.
“It teaches them not just to learn about what has happened but to care and question and to think on a deeper level.”
Both Joshua and Sian are due to visit the battlefields in Flanders, Belgium, along with other students.
This will give them the opportunity to see the trenches first-hand.