A young boy stirs his his ingredients together on the hotplate at the Remembrance through Cooking workshop on Thursday

A young boy stirs his his ingredients together on the hotplate at the Remembrance through Cooking workshop on Thursday

Kids revisit World Wars through library projects

Remembrance Day was on the mind of many children who attended programs at the Stettler Public Library this week, as two programs...

Remembrance Day was on the mind of many children who attended programs at the Stettler Public Library this week, as two different days of workshops were designed to educate participants through creative activities.

On Wednesday, Nov. 9, kids were able to attend the Poppy Art workshop, where they made bookmarks and cards, and coloured poppy colouring sheets.

“I thought the event would be a success with 12,” said organizer Elaine Hoekstra, program manager at the library. “Instead, we had 35 people.”

People came all throughout the day, not just at the very start of the program, which had no defined end time.

“The last couple came near the very end, so I let them stay a little longer,” Hoekstra said.

There were several designs of poppy bookmarks to choose from, and children were able to design their cards as they wished. Some used tape to create crosses on their cards, removing the tape after the colouring was done. Others used red tissue paper to make poppies.

Before it all began, though, Hoekstra started by speaking about the different wars Canadians had fought in, and why it’s important that we remember.

“It was mainly a way for kids to talk about why we have Remembrance Day,” she said. “A lot of the kids had relatives, some long-passed, who were in the war, so they shared their stories.”

The following day, Thursday, Nov. 10, Hoekstra hosted Remembrance Day through a cooking workshop.

During the Second World War, certain items were hard to find. Many of these items went straight to the troops, while other items were simply not made in the quantity they were before the war. To prevent prices from skyrocketing, the ration system was introduced.

People had to make do without certain items, like sugar or chocolate, so different recipes were developed to make do with what was available.

“I wanted to do something that brought (the Second World War) back to everyone,” Hoekstra explained.

She found a recipe released by the British confectionary company Cadbury during the war. The recipe was made available for one day, with the proceeds from the recipe’s sale going to the Red Cross at the time.

The recipe was for a chocolate biscuit, which Hoekstra had made ahead of time. Together with the kids at the workshop, they made the chocolate spread that went on top.

It was what happened after the snack was made that touched Hoekstra, though.

“The kids, after they made theirs to take home and to eat, (took the extras) to the patrons at the library,” she said. “They wanted to track down all the people in the library. They were having fun handing them out on trays.”

The programs over the two days were a “lot of fun,” Hoekstra said. The numbers of kids coming in to the various programs she runs is increasing, she noted.

“What I find more and more is that people that come in to get books, they see us doing things,” she explained. “Yesterday, kids and parents came in for books and ended up making art too.”