Norfolk schools ready to ‘rock’ Remembrance Day to teach children history

Livia Anderson, and her friend Harry Briggs, aged nine. Photo: Penny Killian Anderson

Livia Anderson, and her friend Harry Briggs, aged nine. Photo: Penny Killian Anderson - Credit: Archant

A mum-of-two from Diss has encouraged the town's schools to get involved with the Norfolk Rocks craze for Remembrance Day, in order to teach children the meaning behind the event.

Six-year-old Livia Anderson has been decorating rocks with poppies, ready for Remembrance Day. Photo

Six-year-old Livia Anderson has been decorating rocks with poppies, ready for Remembrance Day. Photo: Penny Killian Anderson - Credit: Archant

Penny Killian Anderson, 37, of Denmark Street, Diss, came up with the idea of decorating rocks with poppies, and remembrance-themed paintings, as a way of educating children about the history and importance of Remembrance Day.

She said: 'It may provoke a conversation between parents and children about the war and what went on.

She added that it could help young children feel part of the Remembrance Day activities.

She made the suggestion on the Norfolk Rocks Facebook page, a group dedicated to the craze for decorating and hiding stones for children to find, and received a lot of interest from nearby schools.

Rocks decorated by Penny Killian Anderson and her two children, six-year-old Livia, and 14-month-old

Rocks decorated by Penny Killian Anderson and her two children, six-year-old Livia, and 14-month-old Hugh. Photo: Penny Killian Anderson - Credit: Archant

Read more: Have you found one of the rocks hidden in Norfolk?


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Mrs Killian Anderson said that Scole Primary School, Bressingham Primary School, Diss Junior School, Roydon Primary School, Diss Children's Centre and The Swan Nursery have all decided to take part in the project, which has also received 'positive feedback' from the Royal British Legion.

The idea behind the project is that after the children have decorated the rocks, they can lay them on the kerb at the edge of the road during the Remembrance Day parade through Diss. The route will go past the church and along the main High Street, with the Mayor of Diss and local officials in attendance.

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After the parade, the children can leave their decorated stones at the war memorial, or rehide them around the town for other rock-hunters to discover.

Six-year-old Livia Anderson has been decorating rocks with poppies, ready for Remembrance Day. Photo

Six-year-old Livia Anderson has been decorating rocks with poppies, ready for Remembrance Day. Photo: Penny Killian Anderson - Credit: Archant

Read more: Rock discovery craze sweeping across Norfolk

Mrs Killian Anderson, a childminder and former teacher, said the project was not intended to distract from the poppy collection or memorial parade, but to help children have fun while they gather understanding.

'It started with trying to build more understanding for my own six-year-old daughter,' she added. 'At the end of the parade my family and I are planning to collect any leftover rocks and redistribute them around local war memorials.

'It would be lovely if we could get both the roadsides covered.'

Mrs Killian Anderson's husband, Stephen Anderson, 38, is a volunteer warrant officer for the Stowmarket air cadets. She hopes to make more people aware of the project prior to the parade.

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