Attending Remembrance Day ceremonies on November 11th is a well known way to honour the men and women who served Canada in times of war, military conflict and peace.
Attending ceremonies, wearing a poppy, and hosting events at schools are ways we can help children understand the importance of November 11th.
There are many other ways, throughout the year, to remember the sacrifices and achievements of the one and a half million brave Canadians who served, and continue to serve, our country at home and abroad, and the more than 118,000 men and women who died so that we may live in peace and freedom today. Taking an active role to remember these people is one way to say “thank you.”
Parents are encouraged to read to their children to explain the complexities of war and the importance of remembrance. The Canadian Military Family Magazine recommended reads include “Bunny the Brave War Horse” written by Elizabeth MacLeod. This storybook explains the story of the First World War through the true story of a police horse named bunny, his riders, and his brothers.
To really give children a true understanding of remembrance “A Poppy is to Remember” by Heather Paterson is a recommended book. Accompanied by brilliant illustrations this book explains in Flanders Field and the history of the poppy.
Another important book is “In Flanders Field: The Story of the Poem by John McCrae”, by Linda Granfield. This book was released this year for the 100th anniversary of the poem.
“A Bear in War” by Stephanie Innes and Harry Endrulat is another heart wrenching story. The book introduces children to the story of Lawrence Browning Rogers and the teddy bear his daughter sent him overseas to keep him safe.
Ridgeview students have also prepared poems, stories, creative writing and artwork commemorating remembrance. Many of these student reflections and wonderings are displayed throughout the school. We encourage parents to take time to review these displays.
Many thanks also to the Hassan family for their participation in the West Vancouver Rememance Day ceremony on November 11th. Julian, Jake and Ryan placed the Ridgeview wreath in remembrance of our school community's recognition of this special event and our ongoing commitment to peace.
Remembrance Day is obviously important to recognize. Children see the ceremony and can sense the sadness of it all, but they may not understand what, exactly, we are remembering. War is not just something that happened in another place and in another time: it is ongoing and continues to affect many families. Let us not forget the contributions and sacrifices of the men and women who have served Canada in times of war, military conflict and peace.
Mark Shepard’s inspiring lyrics of “Together We Can Change the World”, as performed by the Ridgeview Primary Choir, under the direction of Mrs. McKanna at our remembrance assembly, is a poignant reminder that Together We Can Change the World.