Year 5 Suntrap Visit
On the 25th November 2015, Year 5 went to Suntrap to learn about maps and compasses in preparation for our Round the Rides orienteering work in March. We played some entertaining games involving compasses and maps including Hunt the Letter and Find the Name. We also walked into the forest to the river using our compasses to navigate. It was great fun! We even got to paddle in the stream and when we finally came back, we had to clean the mud off our boots (great fun!). Overall, It was an amazing trip and we can't wait to navigate through on our own later in the year.
Year 5 Docklands Trip
During Thursday 5th and Friday 6th of November, Year 5 went on a trip to the London Docklands Museum to learn about the River Thames and its docks as part of our Geography work. During the days we went mud larking on the foreshore and explored Sailor Town, a replica of a Victorian dock town. Here are the photos we took.
Year 5 Visit to Neasden Temple
On the 19th November 2015, Year 5 took a trip to Neasden Temple as part of our work on Hinduism to find out more about the temple. We travelled by coach and knew we were near when we saw Wembley as the temple was just opposite it. As we arrived, the first thing we saw was the magnificent Mandir, with its shikaras (towers) stretching high up into the sky. Beyond that there was the wooden Haveli, where cultural activities take place. We disembarked from the coach and entered this wonderful building for the first time.
Next, after passing through the security checks , we were required to take our shoes off. I noted that this was the same with Mosques and thought that there might be a connection. After this, we were invited into a huge hall which I later learnt that it expanded to quadruple its present size. The shutters on the top of the building closed and a video sprung to life on the board. It was about the making of the Mandir, which was mainly constructed of Italian marble and was carved to perfection in India before being shipped to England where it was put together like giant pieces of Lego. Amazingly, not one of the marvellous white pillars was scratched in the process of transporting it to England and despite holding the world record for the largest Mandir outside India, the foundations were laid in just one day by over 3000 volunteers.
Next, we passed through to the actual Mandir, which had its ground floor taken up by an exhibition about the origins of Hinduism. As we passed through the doors. we were greeted by the Aum symbol on the wall, which Hindus believe was the Divine Sound and the first ever made. When we walked on, we found the walls being taken up by facts and pictures. Did you know that Hinduism has no single founder and that it is the oldest religion in the world, having its roots in the Indus Valley in India, 4000 years ago? There was even a mini model of the Mandir, showing its intricate beauty and the flags flying on the top of it. The red on the flags represent sacrifice and the white represents peace. One thing I learnt was that what differs Mandirs from other places of worship was that it welcomes everyone no matter what they believe in.
We then climbed up the stairs to the part of the Mandir where the services take place. As a sign of respect, we kept silent. As we entered, the first thing I noticed was the magnificent white pillars and the detailed dome on the roof. As we explored, we found that Mertis (statues infused with the spirit of God) were carved into the 12 pillars in the room. There was Ganesha, the Merti for overcoming obstacles and Krishna with his flute. Soon, we sat down and the shrines were opened up. We then saw the Murtis in all their glory, with brightly covered clothing. There was music being played and flames being lit. Please see the link below to hear this beautiful music for yourself.
The Murtis were fed and dressed and the Hindus held their hands over a flame, which represented the essence of God, and rubbed themselves with it . We chose not to partake in this ceremony and just watched. This entire service was called the Arti, which is held several times a day. We then exited and went down to the gallery, where you could see pictures of the Mandir being visited by lots of famous people. You could also see its world record certificate sitting proudly in the glass display cabinet. Finally we entered the shop and were invited back to the hall for question time. We then left and started the long journey back to school.
Overall, I think it was an amazing trip and that there was a very friendly, welcoming environment and I look forward to revisiting some day soon. I especially liked the way they welcomed everybody, not just Hindus. It was one of the best school trips ever!