A Million Ways to Die in WW1

(The title is a direct reference to the best Seth MacFarlane film ever) 

I had to talk to elementary school students. Or middle school, one of those. It was intimidating. In my defense it was often 4 or more of them and one of me. What were we doing talking to grade school aged children? We were presenting videos we had been working on for the past 30 classes in Humanities. And you probably could’ve made the reasonable assumption that these videos were about WW1. One of the bloodiest and in my opinion, most avoidable wars in the history of man kind. 

Me (in the AC/DC shirt) conversing with the children


#1 The videos

We each got a subject to make a video about, I made a video about chemical warfare:

You can see the first draft of the video here:

I made a few changes, I.e. some audio toggling and adding images that were relevant to the subject.  

Before we go on I feel the need to address something, in the video I stated that the total death count for WW1 was 10 million, when in actuality I meant the total of deaths in trenches were around 10 million (you can watch a really cool animation by Fraser about trench warfare) Slight “vocabulistic” error on my part. 

Here’s a bit of the prep we had to do before filming and presenting our videos, you can see the story board we had to create and the screenplay:


Learning about chemical warfare was really interesting because of the huge issue of the ethics of using chemical weaponry, and as you probably know if you watched the video, chemical warfare was an issue surrounding much debate. If you want to read an insightful video on the topic here it is.

#2 Book chats

Throughout the entire unit we read a book. We each had three different groups with three different books, my book was private peaceful. Here is the trailer for the movie adaptation of our book:


We also had to do little book reflections and group chat for each of the four parts of our book:



In the end we created a final reflection on the books, I made some poetry. (Fair warning there are some spoilers ahead)

#3 The other stuff that happened in WW1

Throughout this unit we learnt a lot about the different components of WW1. Starting with the assassination of Franz Ferdinand (click here to watch an amazing video by Lucy about the topic) and why the war started (mainly due to alliances and the greed of man), you can even see a video about the causes of the war that we had to make:

And a little drawing too.


And I would like to leave this meme here, because I thought it funny, if not a bit dark.

We ended of this unit by talking about how the war changed the borders of Europe (click here for a video about that by Millie). 

It’s nice to know that we are ending the year with WW1 and starting the following with WW2 (what I believe to be an accurate summation of my classes behavioral habits). All jokes aside it is in fact helpful to have learnt about this war, because than you can pose yourself the question: 

Would WW2 have happened if WW1 hadn’t? 

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