PHOTOS: Journey Middle students tour interactive museum for Remembrance Day

Grade 8 Journey Middle student Calvin Smith brought a Second World War talker helmet from the U.S. Navy that he bought at a garage sale in Sooke in 2019. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)Grade 8 Journey Middle student Calvin Smith brought a Second World War talker helmet from the U.S. Navy that he bought at a garage sale in Sooke in 2019. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
Grade 8 Journey Middle student Blake Porter brought a British service medal that belonged to his great grandfather, Jim Wright. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)Grade 8 Journey Middle student Blake Porter brought a British service medal that belonged to his great grandfather, Jim Wright. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
Don Thomas, a member of the Victoria-Esquimalt Military re-enactors association, shows Journey Middle students what kinds of tools nurses would have used during the Korean War. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)Don Thomas, a member of the Victoria-Esquimalt Military re-enactors association, shows Journey Middle students what kinds of tools nurses would have used during the Korean War. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
Wade Berglund, a member of the Victoria-Esquimalt Military re-enactors association, shows off a death penny, which was given to the next of kin of a fallen soldier. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)Wade Berglund, a member of the Victoria-Esquimalt Military re-enactors association, shows off a death penny, which was given to the next of kin of a fallen soldier. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
Wade Berglund (right) shows Journey Middle students some tools that were used in the Second World War. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)Wade Berglund (right) shows Journey Middle students some tools that were used in the Second World War. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)

Calvin Smith dons an oversized helmet on his head at Journey Middle school. The Grade 8 student bought the U.S. Second World War talker helmet at a garage sale in Sooke last year. The helmet fits loosely on his head, wobbling from side to side.

“Each soldier would get a radio that was strapped into their helmet,” Smith explained. “It would help them figure out where they were going.”

He’s not the only one that brought war artifacts from decades past to show at Journey Middle’s interactive museum in honour of Remembrance Day.

Black Porter, another Grade 8 student, shows off a British service medal that his great-grandfather, Jim Wright, was given after the Second World War. “My grandma found it in an old box and gave it to my mom, who passed it down to me.”

Journey vice-principal Katrina Abell organized the walk-through museum the day before Remembrance Day for her students. She was tired of following the norm of watching a short video about the war. With no assemblies allowed during the pandemic, she knew she had to raise the bar for Remembrance Day.

Each group of cohorts are taken through the school, from an interactive museum with artifacts to a sit-down chat with a historian. Then, they listen to a student who recorded Taps and observes a minute of silence.

“We have to remember that there was a human element of war,” said Wade Berglund, who served 24 years in the Royal Canadian Navy. “These artifacts each have a story behind them.”

Berglund pointed out a large piece of copper called a “death penny” that was given out during the First World War.

They are about the size of an open hand, each with a different name inscribed on the front. Over 1.5 million pennies were produced, Berglund said.

Berglund traced the man’s name on the penny and discovered that he was killed in action due to an exploding shell while fighting on the front against German soldiers.

Berglund is one of two members from the Victoria-Esquimalt Military Re-enactors Association that came dressed in clothing similar to the period they chose. His outfit represents a soldier during the Second World War, and his friend Don Thomas came as a nurse during the Korean War.

“We thought this would be a great chance to get these kids engaged with history,” said vice-principal Abell. “They’re not watching another timepiece film, but instead learning from historians who are passionate and have a wealth of information.”

READ MORE: Colwood veteran recalls harrowing experience during the Second World War

ALSO READ: Robots roll into Journey Middle School


 

Do you have a story tip? Email: vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

Journey Middle SchoolRemembrance DaySooke

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A Nexii roof panel is lifted during construction of a Starbucks in Abbotsford. Alexzi Building Solutions will be building a manufacturing plant in Langford or North Cowichan to produce the sustainable construction panels. (Photo courtesy of Alexzi Building Solutions)
Langford eyed for facility to make green building alternative to concrete

Langford, North Cowichan possible sites for plant to create sustainable construction panels

Local MP Elizabeth May says the public has a right to know the identity of the company that plans to operate the massive warehouse proposed for Sidney on airport lands but residents who want to stop the project would probably have to go through the courts. (Black Press Media File)
MP Elizabeth May says public has right to know identity of Sidney warehouse operator

Residents wanting to stop the project would probably have to go through the courts, said May

Kenny Podmore, here seen at Sidney’s cenotaph in November, says he feels for the veterans after organizers had to cancel an event acknowledging Victory in Europe (VE) Day for the second time in as many years because of COVID-19. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
North Saanich event marking 75th anniversary of VE-Day cancelled

Sidney resident first planned event for May 9, 2020 moved to May 8 before being cancelled

Individuals and businesses are encouraged to bring their unwanted electronics to Tillicum Centre May 14 to be shredded, recycled or donated. (Black Press Media file photo)
Greater Victoria residents can shred, donate electronics safely

Vancouver Island Better Business Bureau hosts event May 14 at Tillicum Centre

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

Edmonton Oilers’ Connor McDavid (97) celebrates his 100th point this season with Leon Draisaitl (29) against the Vancouver Canucks during second period NHL action in Edmonton on Saturday, May 8, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Edmonton superstar McDavid hits 100-point mark as Oilers edge Canucks 4-3

NHL scoring leader needs just 53 games to reach century mark

A map showing where the most number of cases were recorded from April 23 to 29. This map, revealing a breakdown of infections by neighborhood, was pulled from a data package leaked to the Vancouver Sun last week (and independently verified).
36 Abbotsford schools flagged for COVID-19 exposures in the last 2 weeks, shattering record

Clearbrook Elementary recorded an ‘exposure’ on all 11 school days

Island Health has confirmed COVID-19 exposures at Ecole des Deux Mondes in Campbell River on May 4 and 5, and at Mill Bay Nature School in Mill Bay on April 28, 29, 30 and May 3. (Metro Creative photo)
Two new COVID-19 school exposures confirmed by Island Health

Health authority contacting anyone exposed at Ecole des Deux Mondes, Mill Bay Nature School

Canada’s chief public health officer is reminding Canadians even those who are fully vaccinated are not immune from transmitting the COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns full vaccination does not equal full protection from COVID-19

Post-inoculation, Theresa Tam says the risk of asymptomatic infection and transmission is far lower but not obsolete

The dash cam footage, taken May 7 at 8:18 a.m. belonged to the driver of a southbound vehicle that recently travelled out of the tunnel. (Reddit/Screen grab)
VIDEO: Dash cam captures dramatic rollover crash on Highway 99

Only one person sustained injuries from the collision, says B.C. Ambulance Services

Chevy stranded on a ledge above a rocky canyon at Mimi Falls near Logan Lake, April 28, 2021. (Photo credit: Margot Wikjord)
Police officer and fire chief team up in risky rescue of stranded dog near Logan Lake

Chevy, a rescue dog, needed rescuing again after getting stuck on a ledge above rocky canyon

Police were on the scene of a fatal shooting in Abbotsford. (Black Press Media files)
B.C. government to give more than $8 million for programs to curb gang violence

221 not-for-profit projects led by local governments and school districts among others will receive a one-time grant

Most Read