Big Lake students pose with Legion members after receiving their awards at the Legion on Dec. 17. From left: Sandra Abbott, Joyce Norberg, Kiera Dyer, Emily Bruneski, Allan Fernie, Ian Bruneski.

Big Lake students excel at poetry and poster contest

Students receive prizes in Royal Canadian Legion’s Youth Remembrance Contest

Big Lake Elementary School is a small rural school, with just 24 students. The 10 students in the school’s intermediate class (Grades 5 to 7) recently entered the Royal Canadian Legion’s Youth Remembrance Contest.

Students were encouraged to enter either a colour or black and white poster. Two students asked if they could write poetry at home and submit that in the contest as well as their posters. Of course I said yes!

These students have a very supportive school and community. They have all the supports in place that we can wish for our kids.

I’ve always felt connected to this contest as my grandmother, Sandra Abbott, has been involved with the poppy campaign for years.

My grandpa, David Abbott, also a Legion member, taught art at Columneetza for years and years. Let’s just say I’ve entered my share of poster contests over the years.

As a teacher, I know the excitement and pride students feel being part of the contest. We’re working with a generation of students who are very removed from the concept of World Wars. We put up four full bulletin board displays of Remembrance Day content for the month of November, and held a small but well-attended ceremony before Fall Break.

I always tell them, “if you can’t remember, think.”

Winners from Big Lake attended the Contest Celebration held this past Sunday, Dec. 17, at the Williams Lake Legion Branch 139. We are so proud to have eight winning submissions from our small class and small school.

Several high schoolers who are ex-Big Lake students also won at the senior level. We consider them still Big Lakers!

Winners include:

Ian Bruneski: 1st place, Int. colour poster

Austin Osmond: 2nd place, Int. colour poster

Ivyanne Heppner: 3rd place, Jr. colour poster

Allan Fernie: 1st place, Jr. poster, B/W

Kiera Dyer: 2nd place, Jr. poster, B/W

Kiera Dyer: 3rd place, Jr. poem

Emily Bruneski: 3rd place, Jr. poster, B/W

Emily Bruneski: 1st place, Jr. poem

Holly Zurak is the principal of Big Lake Elementary School and also teaches in the classroom.

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