Great War Contribute Book the Classroom

Great War Classroom

Everyone is aware that the UK is currently celebrating the centenary of the First World war which began in 1914 and ended in 1918. Many aspects of the war are being commemorated in films, documentaries, television programmes and books on the subject. However, despite the widespread public interest in the centenary, one aspect of WW1 heritage has received rather less attention: its effect on the educational experiences of teachers and schoolchildren in the classrooms of the time. In the summer of 2016, Sydenham Arts, with some key local partners, are planning a project which will research the factual histories of real teachers and schoolchildren in South‐East London to find out how the war affected the activities and atmosphere in a typical school classroom. They will then set up a local classroom as closely as possible to the way it would have been in 1916 and invite groups of local students and general public to take part in a series of immersive dramatized sessions to experience for themselves what it might have been like to sit in a typical school classroom a hundred years ago.

The local community will have ample opportunity to contribute to and take part in the development of this project by contributing information, memorabilia, personal recollections, family histories and ideas.

Here on this website you will be able to see how the picture of 1916 education is building up and where they might be able to add to the growing resource.
As well as the general public, of course, more formal sources of information and materials will be explored, from local archives to national resources such as the Imperial War Museum and the National Archives at Kew in London.

There will also be an outreach programme of interviews and conversations with local groups and individuals.