Carolina Gallegos – Drama teacher
Clara González – Year 6 English Language teacher assistant
Karen Roberts – Year 6 English Language teacher
Phase 3: The War that Saved my Life
For the final phase of our project, we decided to give our students a space where they could read their class reader in pairs and discuss and analyze it. This year we picked the critically acclaimed book by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley, “The War that Saved my Life”. The story is about a little girl during WWII who had a clubfoot. She was born in an environment where she was constantly criticised and left aside because of the way that she looked. However, as the story goes progressing she learns that looks aren’t what matters.
The library offered the students a safe environment where they could discuss their opinions with their partners and not feel judged or exposed when doing so. The analysis they were able to achieve on their own surpassed our expectations widely. The more time they were given, the more they were encouraged to analyze and share their findings with the class.
Once we finished reading the book, we went over the lessons we had learnt through the story. Not judging people because of the way they look was the theme which had impacted the children the most. Wanting to end the year positively, we decided to take advantage of this theme and invited the students to value each other. We gave each student a coloured page and asked them to write their names at the top. Then, they folded their page so that it looked like a fan and everyone had the opportunity to write to their classmates what they valued about each other. Watching them read what others valued about them was very fulfilling. Everyone was smiling and very thankful towards each other and it helped them become friendlier and more respectful the last weeks of school.
This was the perfect way of ending the year. A bond and complicity was created between them and it inspired them to end their last year in primary as a group, enjoying themselves and celebrating together.