This morning St Michael’s staff and pupils, along with many other schools and organisations, gathered to remember 101 years since the end of the First World War. At St Michael’s this is an important event for students and teachers to both learn of and mark an event that shaped history.

To commemorate the day we held a Headmaster’s assembly to discuss what Remembrance Day means to us, our school and our history. At 11 am the whole school gathered in front of the school building for a 2-minute silence. We encourage our staff and pupils to do this as a mark of respect to remember the soldiers who have fallen in the First World War, as well as any other conflicts. Lottie, a talented St Michael’s pupil played the last post followed by a two-minute silence. This recognizable melody signifies the final resting of a soldier, traditionally played on Remembrance Day around the world.

Throughout school, we have also been marking the day with the students. Our Year 3 pupils last week made felt poppies to commemorate the day. We were delighted to have expert felter, Cathryn Ward, visit our Year 3’s to not only to teach them the process of felting spun wool but to also help our younger students understand why it is so important to remember this day, despite the many years that have passed.

Our Year 8’s have also been eager to help remember those lost by offering lapel poppies to students in exchange for donations before school each morning. The money raised from these will go to The Royal British Legion, a charity that provides financial, social and emotional support to veterans and members of the British Armed Forces, their families and dependants. Our Year 8’s are proud to help this cause and thereby support new generations of veterans and armed forces personnel as well as teaching our younger students about the importance of remembering such a tragic part of our history.

In the past, we have also taught students about this day with the help of some creative projects. Last year we gathered pupils on the lawn to recreate the Remembrance Poppy, which we then photographed from above to create this wonderful photo. (pictured above)

Overall, at St Michael’s we want to help our pupils understand the significance of not only remembering this day but learning from history. The guest speaker in assembly this morning was the Dean of Jersey (Very Reverend Keirle) who spoke with passion about Remembrance Day and reminded us of the realities of conflict, and how everyone is affected by war.

As the quote often used at this time of year goes, “If we are to maintain our peace and freedom, we must always remember.”

Mike Rees,

St Michael’s Preparatory School