Art by Judy Maw

Year 7&8 Cross-Curricular Programme

In the middle of this term, the Year 7&8 students participated in a ten day cross-curricular programme as part of their study of World War One and the novel, War Horse.

The students were very fortunate to be based off-site at Knox College, using the Cameron Hall, Hewittson Library and the nearby Opoho Park and the Botanical Gardens as their ‘classroom’ each day.

After being apart for many weeks, Dr Townsley organised a special outdoor Garden Paschal Candle Chapel service for the Year 7&8 students to reconnected them as a junior school.

Building on what they had already started studying during distance learning time, the Year 7&8 students competed a wide range of practical activities within the programme, which also gained them their Outdoors Achievement Challenge Badge.

The students explored different communication methods such as semaphore, code breaking, morse code and telegrams. They applied this knowledge in an escape room challenge and team communication tasks using beepers and flags. They also created drama performances based on messages often sent by telegram during the war.

They developed their navigation skills reading topographical maps using gird references, map legends, contour lines and scales. Each class put their skills into practice to set their own orienteering course across the entire lower Botanical Gardens area.

After learning more about the war propaganda used to entice young men to enlist to serve their King and country and the ballot process of military conscription, the 55 new ‘recruits’ of SHCS Platoon assembled on Opoho Park to learn the significance of a parade ground and experience formal training in parade drill. Following the Officer’s commands, replying with loud shouts of “Yes Sir, they learnt to march, turn, stop and stand at attention, in unison.

Pioneering skills were useful during war time, as soldiers made temporary gadgets to make life in the outdoors more comfortable. The students learnt to square lash wooden poles together to construct camp gadgets such as wash up stands, rotating clothes lines and food prep tables.

Learning popular past times such as cross stitch and string games became daily favourite activities. The students designed and cross stitched their bookmarks, and with nimble fingers formed various complex interchanging string patterns. Mrs Barron also shared her knowledge and interest in cross stitching, explaining the Quaker stories behind many of designs she had stitched herself.

During the programme, the students created WWI art works, recording history using a range of art techniques: carbon transfer, image tracing, texture and brass plaque rubbings. Their art works are a collage of their WWI knowledge. These are now displayed in the Arts’ Building gallery foyer.

Year 7 & 8 Art Installation — Image by: Judy Maw