National Memorial Arboretum

36 Students from Year 8 and 4 members of staff, were selected to attend a visit at the NMA as part of the wider World War One topic. As a veteran of the Royal Air Force I believed it be important that the students understand the meaning behind the memorials and the sacrifice of those who served in World War One beyond the battlefield.

The students were presented with sources and replicas of Victoria Cross medals that allowed them to make the link between people and movement across our Empire, Women’s role, the youth and change in technology. This was then shown through the various memorials across the vast site of the Arboretum, including the moving memorial to the 306 soldiers who were executed during the conflict.

The students also paid a visit to the Armed Forces Memorial, which houses the names of 16,000 servicemen and women who have laid down their lives since the end of the Second World War. The students also carried out an act of remembrance, laying a wreath on behalf of Wednesfield Academy and the wider trust.

The students were fully engaged within the visit, which the staff at the Arboretum said: ‘Some pupils had very good knowledge and everyone was well behaved. We were pleased to hear that most of the class said they wanted to come back. There were some very interested pupils with very positive engagement in the classroom activities and their involvement in the Act of Remembrance was exemplary.”

One of our pupils said: “I had a really good day. I want to come again. I learnt about people who gave their lives for us, and I want to come back with my family to tell them what I’ve learnt.”

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