Lots to be done

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In this session we began to think about what kind of publication we might make to collect all our work together for sharing at the end of our project in July. We talked about perhaps showing modern pictures in sepia, about making our publication look old. We thought the cover should perhaps resemble some of the covers of the books we looked at which were published for young people during…Keep Reading

Drama at Easter

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We came into school over the Easter holidays to work on devising our drama pieces, based on the themes we’ve now identified as our focus. It was great to have Sean Lang, Gavin Dent and Emma Harpley working with us, supporting our activities. We benefited a lot from their expertise. We also had Pete Harmer and Peter Noble with us, filming the action and recording interviews with some of the…Keep Reading

Deciding on our Focus Themes

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In our Drama workshops during the Easter holidays we decided what themes from the research materials we’ve looked at that we will focus on in detail. With Sean Lang’s help, we decided to look at the following themes: Recruitment and setting off to war Feet and health Prisoners Shooting civilians Cowards and medals wrongly earned Food and Hunger The end of the War All of these themes come up for…Keep Reading

At the Challis Museum

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For this session we visited the Challis Museum, a building which has only recently opened in Sawston. Mary Challis left her house and garden to the village of Sawston when she died, and a group of trustees has gradually been working to restore the house and garden so that it can be open to the public. The garden is very big and has lots of interesting plants to look at…Keep Reading

Behaviour in War

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In this session we discussed the rules of war and what the situation was at the time of WW1. We then held a mock trial, putting ourselves in the shoes of soldiers who may not have behaved according to convention, and villagers who might have had reason to feel aggrieved. It was an interesting session and helped us to understand issues relating to conflicts.

Understanding through Drama

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In this session we looked at two different parts of Paul Thuns’ diary and, working in groups, we recreated these, performing our piece for the other groups. One of the sections we looked at was ‘The Slag Heap Position’. The Slag Heap Position   Large scree slopes by the coalmines interweave the countryside and our line followed these slopes for several kilometres. Lots of tunnels penetrated the still warm slag heaps….Keep Reading

Framing questions and working with students from ARU

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In this session we worked in groups to frame questions for research based on Paul Thuns’ diary. Some of the ARU students worked together in one group and I think they were quite surprised when they found that we had come up with very similar research questions to theirs!

Paul Thun’s Feet

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In Paul’s Diary we learned about how far he had to march and the effect this had on his feet. The relevant extract is included below: ‘… During the evening we reached a bigger town. We were not to get into our quarters but had to march up a hill to defend this, as the French were supposed to attack us. We could not see anybody. A lot of valuable…Keep Reading

Renate tells us about Paul Thuns

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In this session we learned about Paul Thuns from Renate, his great niece who lives in Sawston. She showed us a map of where Paul had been based, and told us the following information about him: Paul Thuns was born in 1891 in Peterswaldau/Silesia, now in Poland. He had 4 siblings: Karl and Emil, Bertha and Selma. Paul was the youngest in the Thuns Family. He trained as a shopkeeper/tradesman….Keep Reading

Trip to the Imperial War Museum, London

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We had a great trip to the Imperial War Museum and we were really pleased that the community members who have been working with us on the project were able to join us. Sean Lang has been to the museum many times so was able to lead us to the correct entrance. We had to leave our lunches and bags and then we split into two groups. One group went…Keep Reading