Two Grade 9 students from John Ware School talked to three schools in their Area about their plans to recognize the sacrifices made by Canadians in armed conflicts. CBE schools will hold Remembrance Day ceremonies Nov. 10.
By Jasmine H. and Emily W.
CBE schools across the city each year remember the sacrifice of fallen soldiers and veterans in their own unique way. Here is what one elementary school, one middle school and one high school in Area 6 are doing this year.
Focusing on the Personal at Braeside School
At Braeside School, students read a story about a brother and sister who wrote letters to each other during World War I. The students were then asked to write letters imagining that they were that brother or the sister from more than 100 years ago. Those letters will then be read at their Remembrance Day assembly. New principal Glenn Goslin said this is an attempt to focus on the personal side of war. “These weren’t just nameless, faceless conflicts. Real people were affected.” This year’s ceremony is also unique as two schools came together to plan this event. Braeside School is hosting Ron Southern School in a “school within a school” model as they wait to move to their new location later in November.
Students from both of these schools along with some of the music teachers started planning the assembly in mid-October. They are also going to be reading poetry such as “In Flanders Fields” and observing two minutes of silence to help focus on the personal side of Remembrance Day.
Building Foundations at Marshall Springs School
One of the challenges involved in opening a new school is you don’t have all the resources and materials available for events like Remembrance Day. Marshall Springs School sees that challenge as an opportunity to build a foundation and tradition for students today and in future years. Even in the short weeks they’ve been open, they’re still taking the time and effort to honour Canada’s soldiers.
As the school’s drama teacher, Tyler Curtis says “We’re fortunate to be in Canada today, but we need to remember that some people had to pay the price for that.” This school hopes their students reflect on how our past influences our present and how fortunate they are today. Every class and every teacher will have contributed to the assembly by doing things like building poppies, carrying the flag and wearing their cadet uniforms. One of their Grade 8 students will play The Last Post and Reveille on the trumpet.
Honouring Soldiers from the Past to the Present at Central Memorial High School
For Central Memorial High School, Remembrance Day hits really close to home. There are plaques in the foyer dedicated to Central Memorial alumni who lost their lives in WWI, WWII and the Afghanistan war. To mark the day, students and teachers have incorporated music, poetry, drama, and dance into their ceremonies. In the words of their learning leader, Andie Shaffer, “We are focusing on remembering what our military has done for us not just in the Great Wars, but in peace keeping, the Korean War, Afghanistan, and other conflicts every day.” When Ms. Shaffer first joined the school, she saw the effort put into the ceremony and thought it was very beautiful, thoughtful and moving. “We take it very seriously, and it is very important to our school.”
The school hopes to make a difference by having a veterans food drive, and spending hours upon hours finding ways to make this ceremony deeply meaningful to the students, staff and special guests such as representatives from the Princess Patricia Canadian Light Infantry and the Calgary Highlanders.