As part of cross-curricular studies, in Literacy Years 5 & 6 have been examining stories and radio plays related to World War I, including Michael Morpurgo’s War Horse.
The story is set in England and mainland Europe in the lead up to, and then throughout, the war. From Michael Morpurgo’s website:
In 1914, Joey, a young farm horse, is sold to the army and thrust into the midst of the war on the Western Front. With his officer, he charges towards the enemy, witnessing the horror of the frontline. But even in the desolation of the trenches, Joey’s courage touches the soldiers around him.
What’s wonderful about this book is not only its compelling story line, but also that it shows the war from multiple perspectives – including British, French, and German. The book has been made into a radio broadcast, a stage play, and, perhaps most notably, a film directed by Steven Spielberg.
As part of the ongoing project students created posters, wrote letters to family and friends in which they imagined being soldiers in the war, and other imaginative work that brought both the horrors and the heroes of the war to life.