MANCHESTER, England — Parents say their children were traumatized after an primary school in England staged an “elf murder” as part of a writing lesson.
Eight and nine-year-old students at Flowery Field Primary School arrived at school Tuesday to find that their classroom had been turned into a murder “crime scene” featuring police tape and drops of fake blood, according to the Manchester Evening News.
The students reportedly had to play detective and look for clues to identify the suspect, then follow-up as the journalist writing the story.
The school’s headteacher told the Manchester Evening News that the students loved playing detectives during this “engaging and exciting” writing exercise, however many parents disagree.
One mother told the news outlet, “The idea was Elf had been murdered by another Elf. My daughter came home and she was absolutely traumatized…I am very open with my children and I understand you can’t protect them from everything. But my child was very upset last night and had to sleep in my bed.”
That woman allegedly claimed that fellow parents were also “unsettled” by the exercise.
Meanwhile, the school’s headteacher, Ian Fell, reportedly said the children were actually really excited about the assignment and “bought into the murder mystery.”
“Of all of the 90 children who took part, none of them showed anything but full engagement. One of the children said to me ‘I am definitely being a detective when I grow up,’” Fell told the Manchester Evening News.
He reportedly added, “I have been a teacher for 30 years and this is, in my judgment, an appropriate, engaging and exciting thing that children aged eight and nine have done. They have been so up for it. I am really looking forward to see the quality of the outcomes.”