RICH HISTORY: YEAR 7'S SCHOLARLY VISIT TO AMSTERDAM

On the 10th February my year group and I went on a very educational yet fun trip to Amsterdam. We had to wake up very early to leave for 6.30am and the journey was long – but the long trip there was fun.  Miss Butts even allowed us to stay in the same room as our friends!

On our first full day there, we visited two different cemeteries. The first one was The War Cemetery at Oosterbeek where British, Polish and Dutch airborne soldiers were buried after the war.

At first, the gravestones all looked the same but we learnt that if the gravestone was pointed at the top it meant that the soldier was Polish. If the Star of David was seen on the gravestone it meant that the soldier was Jewish. What do you think it meant if the cross was seen on the gravestone?

The second cemetery we visited was different because it wasn’t where just soldiers were buried, but members of the public too. Their gravestones were designed by their families and friends to create an even more special memorial.

On our second day in Amsterdam, we went into town where you could definitely feel the difference in culture. There were many shops. Members of the public sounded totally different to what we hear in London. We even got to eat some tasty McDonald’s during the day.

Shortly afterwards, we visited Kamp Amersfoort which was a concentration camp full of history. Our tour guide took us around and showed us the main areas.

We learnt about some of the tricks that were played on prisoners that lived in the concentration camp - too disturbing to repeat.

The last few places we visited were amazing. The Anne Frank House was one of my highlights.  It was where Anne Frank wrote her diary as she hid behind a bookshelf with her parents for years. She wrote about what she went through before someone told people where they were hiding.

We also found out that her boyfriend was called Hello! Isn’t that a funny name? Lastly, we visited the Portuguese Synagogue where we learnt a bit more about Judaism and went for a tour around the synagogue inspecting its main features.

We had a long journey back home but it was worth it as I’m sure everyone enjoyed this trip and learnt something new. Thank you Miss Butts!!

By Symika Smartt 7.7