The Senior School Remembrance Day Assembly featured readings, poetry, and music. Gr. 12 students Sarah and Miranda opened the assembly, reminding us that “we are here today to remember and honour the brave soldiers who fought for the rights we are free to enjoy today” and to “pay respect to the memories of the soldiers’ and their families, nurses, cavalry, as well as anyone impacted by the fight for our freedom.”
Speakers recited poems and fictional and nonfictional accounts written by Canadians who have experienced war and peacekeeping missions. These readings were firsthand accounts that depicted the lives of those affected by the war.
Jasmine, Gr. 12, introduced a visual essay created by a YHS student, that showed both the hardships and daily life of soldiers living through war. Devon, Gr. 11, recited the poem “Why We Wear a Poppy” by Don Crawford. The focus then turned to reluctant unsung heroes:
Many Chinese-Canadian men and women took part in the Second World War. Chloe, Gr. 10, told us about Frank Wong, who was determined to prove his loyalty to Canada by volunteering to enlist in the military, despite facing discrimination in his hometown of Alert Bay on Vancouver Island. Of the two hundred soldiers in his corps, he was the only soldier of Chinese descent. During World War II, Frank Wong saw action in France, and most notably in the Netherlands, where he witnessed the liberation of Holland.
Sarah, Gr. 12, spoke of the Indigenous soldiers in Canada’s history. About 7000 First Nations Peoples and an unknown number of Métis and Inuit peoples served in WWI, WWII, and the Korean War. Indigenous women contributed to these three wars by raising money, knitting for soldiers, working in factories, and working as nurses overseas.
Charlene, Gr. 10, told us about the role Canadian women played in the war effort. Canadian women who chose to serve in the cause of peace and freedom during the war years had to endure and overcome the inequalities of the Canadian society of the day.
Ragazza performed “Danny Boy”, a popular ballad in 1910. With its broad themes and lyrics, the poem describes a loved one saying goodbye. They also performed “After the War” from Paul Gross’ film Passchendaele.
Junior School Remembrance Day Assembly
With all that is happening in the world right now, the Junior School chose to focus their Remembrance Day assembly on world peace and our ‘oneness’. The theme of the assembly was “making the world a better place”.