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War Game Examining the life of ordinary soldiers during World War I this book recalls the heroism of the young soldiers and the spirit of sympathy that grew up between the two armies as they suffered on the front line This is a story about friends who joined the army in the midst of World War I

10 thoughts on “War Game

  1. Sophie Crane Sophie Crane says:

    This is a poignant story about soldiers arranging a football match between the opposing trenches The water colour pictures are a delight Children who are old enough to watch war movies will begin to think about the sadness of war There are also notes for older children about the history Both of Michael Foreman's uncles died in WW1

  2. Steve Rogers Steve Rogers says:

    War Game By Michael Foreman War Game chronicles the story of four friends from the football pitch in Suffolk to the trenches of the Western front Young and impressionable; Will Lacey Billy and Freddy join the army excited by the prospect of adventure in a foreign land This is a moving story and a painful reminder of the heroism of the young soldiers who fought and died in First World War It is also a wonderfully human piece about the sense of sympathy that grew between the two opposing forces as they suffered together on the front line Foreman manages to capture the mood of the time brilliantly through photographs of contemporary propaganda posters and illustrations documenting the boys journey Their enthusiasm to enlist is characteristic of thousands of young men in Britain in 1914 and is what makes it so powerful when they arrive in the bleak landscape of No Man's Land so tragically unaware of the appalling conditions that awaited them Months later in the mud and rain of the trenches With the continuous bombardment of shells and gunfire as well as suffering the freezing weather the boys become all too familiar with the horrors of war On Christmas eve the guns stop Lights appear from the German trenches and the sound of carol singing breaks through the silence The next day the troops from both sides emerge unarmed from their trenches and join each other on the 'halfway line' of No Man's Land Foreman then beautifully depicts the infamous story of the football match that unexpectedly erupted on the battlefield Boys at war no longer enemies unified for just one day by something as basic as a football This book offers the reader an excellent overview of a soldiers experiences during the Great War from basic training the journey to and arrival at the front lines construction of the trenches daily duties and living conditions through to the full on conflict with the enemy The illustrations depict everything in exuisite detail the aeroplanes the uniforms the weaponry and bleak unforgiving landscape of the battlefield Reading this book in conjunction to with WW1 lessons would be very beneficial to pupils as it would help provide a vivid context to the topic Lessons could include; comprehension exercises such as drawing and labelling trenches designing propaganda posters or war poetry Bringing in additional First World War props would further aid learning and offer a visual kinaesthetic element to the lessons What Michael Foreman is able to do so effectively is work the historical facts into his narrative without disrupting the pace and excitement of the plot It simply continues on seamlessly to is poignant heartfelt and tragic conclusion

  3. Brenda Coughlan Brenda Coughlan says:

    War Game by Michael Foreman depicts the spontaneous truce that took place on Christmas Day 1914 on the Western front during the Great War This beautifully illustrated book begins with 4 young boys playing soccer in Suffolk They are craving some adventure an opportunity to travel and so decide to join the fight with the assumption they will be home before Christmas The author beautifully portrays the innocence of these young boys on their first London bus driving across the French countryside through the ruins of their devastated surroundings when we see them compare the flares used to illuminate the enemy to fireworks The four boys enter the trenches and are uickly moved to the front line Once filled with enthusiasm the boys are now faced with gunfire freezing winter conditions and thoughts of home Christmas Day sees a welcome truce between the two sides and the enemy is humanised as the German front line emerge from the trenches to partake in a friendly game of soccer As they return to their trenches Christmas wishes are swapped This jovial atmosphere is uickly uashed when the Germans are replaced with Prussian soldiers and a heavy gunfire attack follows During a counter attack Will one of the boys is shot and dies in No Mans Land Foreman accurately depicts the brutality of war and creates empathy within the reader for all sides involved Throughout the book he includes actual war propaganda popular at the time to encourage men to enlist This book could of course be used cross curricularly in History as his writing and watercolour illustrations are immensely detailed depicting the landscape uniforms aircrafts riffles and trenches I think this book would certainly develop a child's curiosity and imagination and perhaps even lead to discussions over the issue of war and indeed be useful in creative writing I would suggest this book for Year 6 due to difficult vocabulary pertaining to war which students may not be familiar with It is a beautiful book and I would highly recommend it for students

  4. Adam Shaeffer Adam Shaeffer says:

    Both beautiful and heartbreakingly sad this lavishly illustrated story reminds us of how similar we all are and in doing so brings home the deep tragedy of war

  5. Isobel Isobel says:

    This book could be used to teach children about world war two The illustrations are basic and full of detail to show the reader what the battlefields looked like in World War One It is a good story explaining what happened in world war one looking at fighting in the air and on land and looking at how war caused death The most insignificant part of the story is when the German soldiers play football against the English soldiers on Christmas day this supposedly happened

  6. AnzacPuppy AnzacPuppy says:

    This book is an illustrated book for children The story happened in 1914 during the first world war It deals with a group of four young boys who dreamt of becoming professional football players and to join the national soccer team but they were enlisted and had to fight in FranceThis book is very interesting because it shows how humans can be nice despite the horror of the WAR What a nice Book

  7. Jasmine Jasmine says:

    This is an wonderful and moving story of a group of young men who go to fight in the First World War written in the memory of the author's uncles who themselves went to war It is beautifully illustrated and really captures the horror and fear that people would have faced at the time However the language is accessible and the story is not too graphic This would be an excellent book for a World War One Topic and suitable for ages 7

  8. Ben Cooke Ben Cooke says:

    A fantastic story just a shame it had to be so true Combined with elements of non fiction this book would make a fantastic resource in a classroom of learners studying the World Wars Displaying the highs and lows of the life of a soldier you are really able to connect with their story A great recommendation Mat was a pleasure to read

  9. Rachel Magee Rachel Magee says:

    This historical fiction book follows the journey of four young friends who join the British Army during World War I Throughout the book it provides real images of propaganda during this time trench life No Man's Land war traditions and the effects of the war on civilians This book would be a wonderful addition to a text set that focuses on the perspectives of World War I

  10. Ric Ric says:

    Read a lovely children’s book yesterday War Game by Michael Foreman about the horrors of WWI but explained in a way that children could take in Beautifully written and illustrated

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