ST MARGARET'S EVACUEES
A mixture of high-tech wizardry and old-fashioned arts and crafts helped transport children from a Calne school back to the time of the Second World War.
Pupils in Year 6 at St Margaret’s Prep School traditionally visit the Steam museum in Swindon as part of their history lessons on the war. But this year Coronavirus restrictions meant that the trip could not go ahead, so creative teachers decided to organise their own day to bring the era alive. Both Year 6 classes at the school came dressed as evacuees carrying gas mask boxes they had made at home as part of a homework assignment.
They were met by teachers also dressed as schoolmarms from the 1940s. Year 6 teachers Georgina Gibson and Olivia West threw themselves into the role play.
Mrs Gibson said: “Teachers and teaching assistants all jumped at the chance to dress up and embrace the event.
“It was a fantastic day and one I hope the children will remember.”
The difficulties for families living through the Blitz were brought home as blacked out classrooms were turned into virtual tube station shelters thanks to the Internet.
Mrs Gibson said: “It gave the children the chance to feel what it would have been like with the bombs coming down.”
The children also sang songs of the day used to keep morale high and made Spitfire aircraft out of paper. They also tried their hand at Enigma codes.
Head of Art Helena Harris helped the children create large models of gardens from the World War Two era complete with Anderson shelters fitted with bunk beds, vegetable patches and people.
ST MARGARET'S AWAREDED FAIRAWARE STATUS
Children at St Margaret's are learning they have the power to make a difference to the world by becoming part of the Fairtrade movement. The FairAware status is gained by carrying out a number of projects including an audit to check if Fairtrade products are being used everywhere from staff room coffee to cotton in uniform.
They also held a Fairtrade cake sale to complete the challenge section of the award scheme. Year 6 teacher Emma Symonds said: “The application was led by Year 6, and involved the whole school. We teach Fairtrade as a topic in Year 6, and in addition to the classroom-based learning, the children led an assembly and held a cake sale with cakes made from Fairtrade ingredients. We are now working towards the next level which is FairActive.”
A spokesman for Fairtrade Schools, which is part of the Fairtrade Foundation, said: “Becoming a Fairtrade School means joining a worldwide movement – a movement where young people learn that, whatever their age, they have the power to make a difference in the world.
“It offers a great opportunity to look at global issues such as where our food comes from and how we are connected to people around the world. Students can also learn a range of skills, from teamwork and co-operation to persuasive writing to running a stall or tuck shop.”
ST MARGARET'S WAVES THE FLAG FOR ALL THINGS GREEN.
St Margaret's Preparatory School has now received our third Green Flag from Eco-Schools which is part of Keep Britain Tidy.
Luckily St Margaret’s managed to finish its application before lockdown began and instead of an inspector paying a visit, as would normally happen, was judged on its portfolio of work.
Lee Wray-Davies the Eco-Schools manager for England said: “Congratulations to St Margaret’s on achieving your third Green Flag.I would like to thank you for continuing to work on your Eco-Schools Green Flag during these unprecedented time- it is a true reflection of your school’s determination to make a real difference.”
St Margaret’s eco lead and Year 6 teacher, Emma Symonds, praised pupils in her year who led the project and encouraged children from all age groups to become more aware of environmental issues. One of the young eco warriors came up with the idea for a competition to see which class could collect the most used batteries so they could be recycled properly. Miss Symonds said: “I am very proud of all our Eco-Committee. They led the whole
project and decided which of the ten topics listed for the Green Flag award they wanted to work on. They all put in a lot of time and effort and inspired other children.”
Green Flag is the highest of three awards given by Eco-Schools and to keep the status has to be renewed every two years.