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ACS Hillingdon students visit French battlefields for World War I poetry tour

Published Monday 22nd of December 2014 04:04:13 PM

Fifty-seven students from ACS Hillingdon, aged 15 to 16, recently travelled to France where they visited a series of historic World War One battlefields as part of their English Literature studies.

Grade 10 pupils began their two-day trip with a visit to the Thiepval Memorial, dedicated to soldiers who died in the Battle of the Somme with no known grave. They continued with a moving visit to Ors Communal Cemetery where they learnt of the stories behind British Commonwealth soldiers' involvement.

Engaging with the International Baccalaureate English Literature and Language curriculum, the trip was designed to provide a practical context for students who have been exploring poetry by Wilfred Owen in classes. Students also had time for some sight-seeing and visited the Sambre-Oise Canal, which was crossed by the Allies during their advance towards victory in November 1918.

Alison Aurnhammer, English teacher at ACS Hillingdon, commented:

'This visit was a great opportunity for students to experience first-hand the reality of war and how it influenced the work of Wilfred Owen. Everyone returned home with a new sense of respect for the soldiers who fought, and a new perspective on the pieces they have been studying in class.'
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