Today, Year 6 experienced a truly awe-inspiring session with a veteran who visited us to talk about his career as Sergeant in the RAF Regiment. Our Year 6 children were so respectful throughout the session and asked lots of insightful questions about his training, different job roles and where he served on his tours during his time in the army.
Ian also kindly brought in some WWII memorabilia to help bring the session to life. This included two replica rifles from WWII, his own helmet, his medals of honour and a button shining tool which he was issued in 1958 when he first joined the RAF Regiment.
Throughout the session, Ian was very honest and candidly opened up about some of his experiences during his service including how he first came under fire at the age of 18 in Cyprus. Other tours have taken him to Borneo, Northern Ireland and Aden to name but a few. It was also interesting to learn that he was evacuated at a very young age with his sister during WWII. Year 6 have been empathising with WWII evacuees within their History and French sessions so they were able to apply their knowledge when discussing this with him.
Whilst Ian was able to offer the children lots of personal anecdotes about his time in the army, the children enjoyed sharing their WWII inspired letters and medal designs with which Ian was incredibly impressed and was struck by how realistic and emotive the letters were. Providing an authentic and critical audience to our Year 6 children was such a pleasure to witness as they were desperate to share their learning with him.
Take a look at the photos below to see how engaged and inspired the children were by our wonderful visitor today.
On a final note, one of our Year 6 children asked ‘what advice would you give to someone of our age who would like to become a soldier’, to which he replied:
“If you’re prepared for it, go for it. My only advice would be to carefully choose a branch of the forces that you’d like to go into…The forces can teach you a good trade and set you up for life. I would definitely recommend joining the cadet force at your age to get a taste of what it’s like.”