Year 6 have been immersed this term in WW2 History. Our text we are reading, “The Boy in Striped Pyjamas,” an extraordinary tale of friendship and war, led us to find out more about the plight of the Polish people.
Lo and behold, Tengeru, Arusha, harbours a Polish cemetery where 150 Polish refugees are buried. 5,000 refugees arrived here in 1942, escaping the terrors of war.
The children were fascinated to imagine and unravel some possible stories. Here are some of their reflections:
"I find it just amazing how these Polish refugees reached Tengeru. They are heroes to me. Can you imagine starting a journey in Warsaw, being expelled to Siberia then to Moscow, Uzbekistan, to Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, India and cramped in a boat to Kenya? Finally they arrived, exhausted in Tengeru. They survived diseases and starvation. They are heroes to me and I have a huge amount of respect for them." - Nicolas
"When I visited the cemetery and heard about the journeys around the world these Polish refugees made, it reminded me of my journey from Yemen to Tanzania, fleeing war.
It was late at night when the phone rang (It didn’t ring that often). My father picked up the phone, it was a deep voice and I couldn’t quite make out what was said. So I closed my eyes and went back to sleep. The next day I woke to hear anxious voices of my siblings. Someone was rushing, it was my eldest sister, Sumeiya, who came in and hugged me.
“We are going,” cried Sumeiya.
“Going where?” I asked
“To Kenya,” she replied.
With one bag each, we started our long bus journey……" - Kulthum
Imagine our surprise when we found out that Tiggy’s great grandmother was Polish and was buried in this cemetery. We gathered around the grave of Anna Karaiskos to lay flowers and pay our respects.
Thanks for being here with us. I am happy you survived WW2 so that you live on in our memories. We are grateful for the enormous journey you made. I can’t imagine how you must have felt.
I love you, Tiggy xx"
Many graves were of babies who failed to survive even a day. With fathers at war, young mothers must have clung to the hope within them.
"Oh the torture.
Oh the hatred,
a long journey of sweat, strength and tears.
A mother looks down at her cradled baby,
Her only hope was the loved one she held in her arms.
A tragic loss she has to live with forever ." - Matilda
"When all hope is lost, it’s easy to give up.
These brave women fought death to save the light and life that grew within them.
And when that light dies, hope dies with it.
The light is gone and so is hope." - Tanvi
"I think the mother of Maria must have been very weak before giving birth.
Maria died the same day she was born.
Her mum also died that day.
She had escaped a POW camp; travelled thousands of miles, exhausted and hungry.
R.I.P, dear." - Belize.
"My eyes caught a grave that looked different from all the graves.
She had flowers that had grown on top of her.
As I sat and watched,
My heart started to smile,
Happy to see God was pleased.
R.I.P. " - Shreya
And finally a personal response from Ellis
"I honestly don’t know if I could cope without my family, not knowing where I was going or not being able to communicate. I honestly don’t know if I could do it. Could you?"
As part of his Gold Dragon Award, Nicolas carried out some incredible research in France, visiting places his great grandfather served in WW2. He interviews his great grandmother who shares her memories. Worth a watch!
A report from Mr Wheatley:
"It is with great pleasure that I can finally report on a footballing success for Braeburn, as the u13s ran riot on Saturday morning to win the first NTAA u13s football tournament.
Braeburn's tournament began with a dominating performance against ISMAC, who were simply unable to deal with our organisation, agility and confidence to play football the right way. A commanding performance from Brandon in the middle of the park paved the way for opportunities to be created for other players. Yuri proved a constant menace to the ISMAC defence and was only too happy to seize these opportunities - he finished by bagging what was an impressive hat-trick. In defence, Braeburn looked just as assured as dominating performances from both Clinton and Ibrahim meant that chances for ISMAC were limited. When ISMAC did find their way through, Michel in the first half and Antonio in the second were there to prevent any goal from being conceded. Brandon finished his commanding performance with a very neat finish from some distance. 4-0 was a fair reflection of Braeburn's dominance.
Braeburn knew a win in our second game against St. Cons would have been enough to guarantee our place in the final and we begun the game with real purpose. Yuri, again, proving a real thorn in the opposition's defence capitalised on a defensive mixup to give Braeburn the lead. This wasn't, however, to be the platform that we had hoped for and what followed, unfortunately, was a lethargic performance. Clinton and Ibrahim, again, putting in commanding performances were impressive but they were unable to prevent St. Cons from equalising. Ikombe and Daudi coming on for the second half, gave a different dynamic to our attacking play but St. Cons remained frustratingly resolute. This meant for an anxious wait, as a St.Cons victory against ISMAC in the next game of four goals or more would have meant that St. Cons progressed to the final on goal difference. Luckily, ISMAC performed admirably and battled St. Cons - in all honesty, they deserved the win but were unlucky to fall to a 1-0 loss.
This result helped to set up a final match against Kennedy House, who convincingly won their Pool B group by winning both of their games. Braeburn were in no mood to entertain, however, and put in a performance that was so assured that Kennedy House hardly knew what had hit them. Mohveer and Brian growing into their roles out wide, meant that extra space was giving to Brandon in the middle of the park who distributed the ball with real maturity - our first goal, the result of Brandon placing a delightful chip behind Kennedy House's defence for Yuri to latch on to and finish with ease. Braeburn's intensity wasn't the only impressive feature of their first half performance but, also, their competence at playing football neatly, demonstrating real teamwork in the process. A second goal quickly followed (Brandon), though Kennedy House did manage to respond after some neat play. Braeburn, undeterred, continued to play with real menace and always looked likely to score - Yuri, again, only too happy to oblige. It could have been greater, had Brandon's shot not been saved and Brian's spectacular shot not been denied by the bar. The second half was a similar affair, Braeburn dictating the play with real intent and purpose. The introduction of Ikombe and Daudi, again, helped to give even more impetus to our attacking play and both were extremely unlucky not to score. It was Yuri, however, who really stole the show as his prowess was rewarded with five goals!!! Braeburn finished running away with ease, as the game ended 6-1.
It was an excellent day all round for Braeburn and every player can be extremely happy with their performance and the maturity they demonstrated on and off the pitch - one very proud coach, here!
Man of the Tournament: Yuri - eight goals in three games!"
The children in FS1 at the Infant School have been discovering the tiny world of minibeasts. Through stories like 'The Very Hungry Caterpillar', 'The Very Busy Spider', and 'The Very Lazy Ladybird', they have learned about their lifecycles, how they survive and thrive, and how they help keep the world spinning round.
They have enjoyed exploring the ever-growing garden at the Infants and discovering what little creatures have already made it their home. Using their 'bug catchers', they have adventured through the garden every day. They have found centipedes, grasshoppers, beetles, spiders and even a tiny frog, which brought much excitement to the classroom.
Upon finding the frog, they created a little environment for him to live in and watched him with fascination.
They created a 'Bug Research Lab' in their classroom where they have been able to look at creatures under the magnifying glass, noticing their patterns, how many legs they have, and how they move and eat.
After investigating their tiny creatures, they are always ready to go and release the bugs back out into the garden.
We have a bunch of little scientists in the making!