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Sunday, November 8, 1998 Published at 16:23 GMT


Learning to remember

Wilfred Owen's "old lie: Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori"

World War 1:Special Section
Primary school pupils have been acting out poems from World War I as a way of understanding what the Remembrance services are about.

The National Junior School in Grantham, Lincolnshire, is trying to give new meaning to stories passed down through two generations to children preparing for the new millennium.

Watch Robert Hall's full report
During assembly, some of the children acted out events as graphically described in the poems of Wilfred Owen: "Bent double like old beggars under sacks, knock kneed, coughing like hags..."

It has given them an appreciation of the bravery of the young men involved, and of the sacrifice so many made.

"The First World War was very bad but ... they saved our country and we are very proud of that," said one girl.

[ image: Sheila Cupit: Bringing history alive through drama]
Sheila Cupit: Bringing history alive through drama
"I think it's wrong to say we shouldn't remember it," said another. "It should definitely go on because we might not have what we have today if they hadn't fought for us."

"We tried to bring it into a drama," says history teacher Sheila Cupit.

"It was an emotional war. Emotions were running high when the soldiers went to war, and emotions were high in the trenches when they found the pain, the suffering that went on there."

[ image:  Jack Rogers: Survived being buried alive by a shell]
Jack Rogers: Survived being buried alive by a shell

Jack Rogers, 103, was a sniper in the Sherwood Foresters during World War I.

His message to children today is: "Always try and bear in mind what those men - and women - went through.

"And try and do your utmost to see that it should never happen again in your lifetime if you can help it."

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