Remembrance through the eyes of our Head of History
The concept of ‘remembrance’ is one that is often presumed to be obvious. However, for many students this isn’t an obvious concept. What exactly are they remembering? Who are they remembering? Why is it relevant? In the History Department at Westonbirt we spend a lot of time reflecting on these issues with students before Remembrance Day. Students explore different aspects of World War One in Year 9 lessons and at home for their extended projects. As a result of this exploration, students are encouraged to remember specific individual experiences (such as Harry Patch- the last surviving British soldier from the trenches). The experiences of soldiers are also contextualised to help students have an appreciation of the impact of war on civilian populations and societies. This contextualisation enables us to discuss modern conflicts and the morality of war. Students are then able to engage with modern conflicts with an appreciation of what it means to go to war and the consequences for everyone involved in conflicts, in countries like Yemen and Ukraine. We hope that this approach empowers students to feel more engaged with the concept of remembrance and to see why Remembrance Day still matters.
Written by Mr Ahmed
Head of History at Westonbirt