History KS3: Freddie Hunn: The boy who loved poetry

Freddie’s love of poetry drove him to join up and helped maintain morale during the war.

Freddie grew up in a large family and developed a love of poetry, especially poems which told tales of war and fighting.

In search of a life of adventure, he volunteered to join the Army even though he was too young to do so.

As a result, he decided to lie about his age so he would be allowed to join.

During the war, he served in North Africa and drew upon his love of poetry to help him get through the most dangerous moments of the war.

He would recite his favourite poems, including Rudyard Kipling’s ‘If’, to maintain the morale of the men he commanded in his armoured car.

This short film is from the BBC series, Our Greatest Generation.

Teacher Notes

Pupils could say what their favourite poems and stories are and look at the reasons why - is it because of who they are and what they like to do?

They could then look at whether these have influenced their lives and helped them through situations, so they can relate to Freddie's love of poetry and how it helped him during the war.

Curriculum Notes

This short film will be relevant for teaching history at key stage 3 in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and third and fourth level in Scotland.

More from Our Greatest Generation:

Jim Purcell: The boy with no shoes
Dorothy Hughes: The girl who broke the rules
Gus Bialick: The boy who loved Britain
Elaine Kidwell: The girl who loved the Guides
Konnie Ho: The girl from Chinatown