19 May 2014
5/6B is Globally Connected
Students in 5/6B are looking at issues that exist globally, and how this impacts us here in Australia. Many issues are being discussed including Human Rights, Foreign Aid, War and Peace as these are just some of the themes students have discussed in a number of our lessons so far.
In English we are studying a number of visual, narrative, information texts, as well as biographies. One particular moment in History which is relevant to our unit of study has been the Bombing of Hiroshima in World War Two. Students have been looking at the events leading up to this disaster and reflecting on the accounts of survivors and getting a sense of trying to imagine the power and devastation which occurred in Hiroshima.
Students in 5/6B have been reading as a class, the novel Sedako and The Thousand Paper Cranes Based on the true story of Sadako Sasaki, who lived in Hiroshima at the time of the atomic bombing by the United States.
After being diagnosed with leukemia from the radiation, Sadako spent her time in a nursing home folding origamipaper cranesin hope of making a thousand of them. She was inspired to do so by the Japanese legend that one who created a thousand origami craneswould be cured by the gods. Her wish was simply to live. However, she managed to fold only 644 cranes before she became too weak to fold anymore, and died on 25 October 1955. Her friends and family helped finish her dream by folding the rest of the cranes, which were buried with Sadako.
After her death, Sadako's friends and schoolmates published a collection of letters in order to raise funds to build a memorial to her and all of the children who had died from the effects of the atomic bomb. In 1958, a statue of Sadako holding a golden crane was unveiled in the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, also called the Genbaku Dome, and installed in the Hiroshima Peace Park.
At the foot of the statue is a plaque that reads: "This is our cry. This is our prayer. Peace on Earth." Every year on ObonDay, which is a holiday in Japan to remember the departed spirits of one's ancestors, thousands of people leave paper cranes near the statue.