CHILDREN from Wroughton Junior School spent the morning at Ridgeway School yesterday learning about the First World War.

The Year 6 pupils visited the school for six cross-curricular activities about one of the most important conflicts in history.

Jessica Quick, a trainee history teacher at Ridgeway, organised the event with the help of the other seven trainees completing their placement year at the school.

She said: “I thought it would be a good transition event for the Year 6 pupils to come in and have a chance to meet some of the staff and take part in classes based on a theme that was a bit different.

“Some of the pupils hadn’t learned much about the First World War before and it was just an easy way to help them start thinking about the war and the impact it had on the community.”

Children took part in a range of activities, including cooking food that children would have eaten under rationing, such as rock cakes, gingernut biscuits and potato scones.

Youngsters also learned about the impact the war had on Wroughton. They looked at the village war memorial and learned about the men from the village who fought in the war .

They also wrote letters as soldiers in the trenches would have done , used Caesar cipher wheels to try codebreaking, and learned about the uniforms soldiers from different countries fighting in the war would have worn.

Jessica said it was important for youngsters to learn about the First World War because of the effect it had on so many people.

“Especially during the centenary year I think it’s important to remember the impact the war had,” she said.

“In every village and every town across the country people were affected by the war.

“And this generation of children may not have a relative who can share their experiences of it.”

It was also an opportunity for the trainee teachers to work together on a particular programme.

Jessica said: “It’s been brilliant. It went really well and it was a good opportunity for us all. Where we all teach different subjects, we don’t get much of a chance to work together, so it was a great way to finish our placement year.”

After completing their placement year all eight trainees will graduate as qualified teachers.

Rosemary Cairns, professional tutor at the Ridgeway, was also pleased with the work that had been put in.

She said: “The trainees have worked hard to bring together the cross-curricular event and I’m proud of what they have achieved.”