Young teenagers reflect on impact of Anne Frank's diary

Anne Frank

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How can the life of one teenager 70 years ago have an impact on 13-year-olds living in the UK today?

School Reporters from Corpus Christi Catholic Sports College in Preston recently learned about the story of Anne Frank, a Jewish teenager who kept a diary during WWII.

Like them, Anne was 13-years-old when she started writing about her life, and the students have found that learning about Anne's world through her diary helps bring them closer to that period in history.

They have also been reflecting on what life is like for them - and how they record their own lives.

Making history

Eddie - "I can relate to Anne because in my house, in my room, I keep a timeline of pictures of what's happened in my life and Anne kept her diary and she put pictures in there. I am 13 and she was also 13 at the time... [it] makes me feel closer to her."

School Reporters from Corpus Christi Catholic Sports College reflect on Anne Frank School Reporters produced a reflective piece on Anne Frank

Rehnuma - "The only thing she had was her diary, Kitty. She used to call it her best friend because she used to write everything in it, including her personal information - like who she liked."

Sanya - "Anne's story makes me realise that we shouldn't take things for granted. Before she went into hiding she used to just think like us that flowers are flowers, they're nothing to do with me.

"But when they went into hiding she realised that flowers are actually beautiful things and she actually really missed them."

Hamzah - "I can relate to the story of Anne Frank as I think it shows how racism can have a massive impact on people's lives and the culture of a country. That has been brought down to minuscule [levels] now though with the laws in place against racism."

Robert - "Anne's life affected me by her worries and her feelings and thoughts. Obviously all the worries wouldn't have been the same as we have today but some of them would have been [about] being a teenager and growing up in a world of chaos."

Life for teens today

Rehnuma - "Being 13 is quite hard but it is also easy at some times. The hard thing about being 13 is when you have to pick your options like your GCSEs - whatever you pick [you] will rely on later on.

"If you want to be a doctor and you pick the wrong options, it could turn out all wrong. But the good thing about 13 is that you get more respect from parents and other people."

Rachel - "I think that being a 13-year-old today is relatively easy because we don't have to worry about rationing and persecution and so I feel safe."

Recording our lives

Rehnuma -"I got my diary when I was 13 as well. In my diary, I write a lot of things... like my concerns and worries, what I think of people.

Anne Frank

  • Anne Frank was given a diary as a 13th birthday gift in 1942.
  • Anne was Jewish and was forced to go into hiding to escape Nazi persecution.
  • She died during the war but her diary survived and was published.

"But I write my true feelings which I don't really tell anyone else, not even my parents."

Hamzah - "I think social media sites are a good way to record your life but I think you should be careful on them as well as once you put something on there, it's out there for the world to see.

"So if you've not got your privacy settings set for only your friends to see, in a few year's time, something could come up and really embarrass you."

Eddie - "I don't use social networking sites that often because I don't like to show what my life is like every minute of every day. But I do like to connect with my friends every so often."

Robert - "I don't keep a diary mainly because I can't be bothered writing stuff down."

Rachel - "I used to keep a diary but somebody read it so I don't keep one anymore because I don't want people to know what I'm thinking."

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