Hadrian's Wall: journeys, frontiers, humanity.
In a time when borders, divisions and access to, and the very nature of, education seem more relevant than at any time in our recent past, now seemed like a good time to walk along Hadrian’s Wall. Built over 1900 years ago, by Romans occupying Britain, the parallels with our own times are distressingly obvious. Humankind is still mired in working hard to build divisions amongst ourselves, as a species, rather than working to create, communicate and cooperate. This is not about politics, it’s about people. And so a walk along Hadrian’s Wall seemed very fitting.
This once huge boundary marker that was erected……well, we’re not 100% sure why. Was it to mark the end of the Roman Empire? Was it simply to control the flow of traffic? Was it to keep troops busy so they didn’t get bored and elect a new emperor? Was it a place for Jon Snow and the rest of the Night’s Watch to fritter away their lives waiting for an enemy that never came..?! Apart from the latter choice, the rest are all possible. But, like much of history, we don’t actually know. What we do know is that EdYouFest is where people meet, exchange ideas, communicate and share. And walking along a wall, built by other people, in a place filled with other people, to keep out other people, where their ancestors are all now one people, is a good part of that EdYouFest feeling.
Thom Jones has walked the wall a number of times, with his father, with friends and
alone. He has also worked with groups and schools taking visitors over its history.
And remains fascinated by it:
“It’s mad. Mad that it exists, mad that people actually built it, mad that it didn’t work,
mad that it’s still there. It’s majestic, beautiful and shocking to find it in such a remote,
bucolic nothingness. It’s hard not to stand on it and look at a view that would have been, not dissimilar nearly two thousand years ago and not ask what we’ve learned since. I love it up there”.
So, Thom will set off on April the 26th and finish on the 29th. He’ll walk and sleep along the way. Carrying everything he needs in the oldest rucksack he can find. He will broadcast how he gets on and what’s happening along the route. He will also be talking directly to some groups of students in Italy.
If anybody would like to sponsor him on this endeavour, he is doing it in support of IATEFL projects, helping to fund access to all manner of resources and people within the world of education. As you probably know already, IATEFL projects is an excellent way for our community to help provide funding for ideas and people who need them worldwide:
Hadrian’s Wall walk
If anybody wishes to do the walk, simply select a section or sections they wish to do using the link below, select a date and then try to fundraise for it before setting off:
Any person wishing to do the above walk does so entirely at their own risk and the event is in no way arranged, endorsed or organized by any specific body or organization.
Teacher: Fernanda Amodeo
In my class, I’ve decided to join the project because we have been studying Global Perspectives subject. It provides opportunities to enquire into, and reflect on, global topics from different perspectives. Having a perspective also of the past, in diverse cultures, sharing ideas, and comparing facts with the present and future, make them develop critical thinking skills. Additionally, the opportunity to speak with Thomas, a mother tongue teacher and enthusiastic one, able to catch the students ‘ interest, is a chance not to be lost.
Teacher: Tiziana Pisani
I have decided to join this amazing project with this class, as especially this year I have taught them about the Romans in Britain, including Hadrian’s wall. Then I made my students reflect on the meaning of that wall during the ancient time and what walls mean today. Unfortunately, the students have realized that nowadays walls only mean division, wars and that a world without barriers and walls would be the perfect world for everyone.
Video Coming soon