On Thursday 16th June, Year 4 visited The Tank Museum in Bovington for their topic on World War 1. After being split into groups, they were able to explore different things: life in the trenches, being inside a Mark IV tank and the warhorse exhibition.
When they went to the trench workshop, they started in the recruitment office, surrounded by propaganda posters and a recruitment officer. They were told all about signing up for the war and how important it was. Also, they were told about eight men who were real soldiers in the war and at the end were able to find out what happened to them.
They headed onto the train and through to France, before arriving at the trenches. The trenches had a funny smell to them and they were very dark and dreary. They were able to see what it would have been like. Sadly, there was a soldier there who had shell-shock. He just sat in the trench crying. Eddie and Daniel were able to try on the soldier’s uniform. It was very heavy and uncomfortable!
At the end of the trench experience, the children watched a video about the eight men they had heard about in the recruiting office. It was very interesting to hear what happened to them. One man was blinded during the war, but went on to have a happy life; a couple then went on to fight in WW2; but sadly two died in action in the war.
The children were lucky enough to be able to go inside a Mark IV tank. A member of staff spoke to them about what it would have been like inside the tank and how the tanks worked. The children found this fascinating and were very pleased that they had been allowed to do this, especially as it was then closed for the rest of the people visiting! They realised how cramped it was and none of them liked the idea of spending a long time in a tank.
After lunch, they explored the warhorse exhibition. The children learnt so much about the use of horses during WW1. They were all able to try on a soldier’s uniform, crawl through the small tunnel and pretend to be riding on a horse in the war. As well as this, they saw horses around the exhibition and listened to their story of the war. The stories were very sad. They were shocked at the amount of horses that were sent to war and how few of them came home.
Just before leaving for home, they were able to see some of the other tanks that were used during WW1. It was amazing to see how the tanks have changed over the last 100 years.
The children had a fantastic day and learnt so much about life in World War 1. Thank you to all of the adults who helped on the day.