Nearly a century has passed since the First World War began. It has been almost seventy five years since the Second World War and over fifty years since the arrival of Australian troops in Vietnam. It is little wonder that it can be challenging for students today to understand the contribution Australians have made in wartime.
Memorial Boxes are consistently booked out each year in the weeks leading up to Anzac Day as schools search for a way to make the commemorations meaningful for their students. The resources allow students to put their hands on history by placing them in the shoes of those who served and those who waited for their loved ones at home.
Lindsay Park Public School in Wollongong, New South Wales, used their Memorial Box loan as an opportunity to have a Vietnam veteran, Mr Peter Poulton, speak to their Stage 3 students about his experiences. The students were particularly enthralled with Mr Poulton’s descriptions of the food he ate and the uniforms he wore as a soldier serving in Vietnam. The Memorial Box the school borrowed contains samples of these and much more and the students were thrilled to be able to put their hands on these artefacts.
Across the border, Brindabella Christian College in Lyneham, Australian Capital Territory, set up a Second World War Memorial Box in their library. Each class explored the contents and this helped even their very young students understand the purpose and importance of Anzac Day.
Thank you to both Lindsay Park Public School and Brindabella Christian College for sharing their experiences.
If you would like to find out more about the Memorial Box program, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.