Implementation of ‘Letters and Postcards from War Times’ (SOI-MT-23)


Although World War II is not part of the Maltese-Social Studies Grade 6 syllabus, it served as a piece of general knowledge and a secondary school preparatory session for the students. Mr. Heathcliff Schembri’s learning scenario was originally planned to be circa 7 hours. However, due to the cramped general syllabus and end of Primary School exams, the learning scenario was cut to circa 2 hours, hence 2 lessons. In my case, the subjects tackled were mainly Maltese and Social Studies.

World War II in the Social Studies Section

As regards the Social Studies section, a discussion was held of how and why World War II took place and the role of the Maltese Islands in this war. The YouTube video, guided students to understand better Malta’s role and the damage suffered in the war. Moreover, using their tablet, students searched the Europeana Website for people and artefacts that are related to World War II. Then, they discussed their use and importance. The most searched keywords were: ‘gas masks’, ‘World War II‘ and ‘Hitler

World War II in the Maltese Section

In the Maltese section, the introductory part of the lesson was a few minute revision of the difference between formal and informal letters. A lesson which was already tackled in the first weeks of Grade 6. Basically, each student re-read and studied his/her own formal and informal letters. Which were done some time ago in class, and at home. By viewing a first and a second World War II letters from the Europeana website, students discussed in groups if these letters were actually written in a formal or an informal way.

Students reading WW II letters

Four students were randomly chosen to read the first war letter. Hence then, in groups of four, students tried to reply back to this letter. They had to decide, according to their knowledge if they should rewrite back in the formal or in an informal way. Upon finishing the task, a leader was chosen from each group. Thus four leaders. And each leader read his own replying letter to the class. Moreover, ultimately the second letter was read by two random students and quickly generally discussed. Additionally, each student had to write his own replying letter as homework. Two days later, each student read his/her own version of the replying letter in class.

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Letters and postcards from war times created by Heathcliff Schembri

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The featured image used to illustrate this article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution. Therefore, it can be found in the Europeana 1914-1918 Collection. It has been provided by Sheila Mary Elizabeth Andrews. It has also been resized and labelled to illustrate this article. To find the original image click here.

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