Prayers for peace and thanks, written by today’s young people, form the heart of a powerful Remembrance display to commemorate the sacrifice made by young people of previous generations.
More than 1,500 paper poppies, with prayers and thoughts written on each petal, made by every pupil at St Teilo’s Church in Wales High School, in Cardiff, form a striking display along the school’s central walkway. Staff from the art department, with the help of supporting staff, worked through the evening on Thursday to put the display together and when the pupils arrived for school on Friday morning, (November 10) they were overwhelmed.
St Teilo’s school marks Remembrance Day every year, but since the 100th anniversary of the start of WW1 in 2014, staff have been involving pupils from all age groups in making poppies and writing prayers and messages to the world.
This year, the art department and the students chose to make a display with real impact, to bring together the historical and faith elements of Remembrance. The students also wanted a way to express their own thoughts and feelings. The poppy display enabled all staff and pupils to be involved, providing a chance for them to give thanks for the sacrifices previous generations had made for them.
The display is in an area of the school that is normally busy and noisy, but staff have been struck by how the students are now walking by very quietly and respectfully, taking time to read the messages on the poppies, and looking for the poppy they made.
Headteacher of St Teilo’s Church in Wales High School, Mrs Ceri Weatherall, said, “Each year our remembrance displays have grown bigger and bigger, and this year the entire school has been transformed. Students across the age range have individually prepared one poppy, with each petal containing a prayer, thought or reflection.
“In making their poppies, children considered the examples of great saints and took time to think about the community, the world, the sick, the dead and themselves. Remembrance is an important part of the prayerful life of our school.
“It is our aim that in helping children to understand the sacrifices made by service men and women throughout our history, they will become better ambassadors for peace in our future.
“Our pupils engage in remembrance events with particular reverence and respect and I have every confidence that these fine young people will create a more just and loving world.”
The poppy display will be on show at the school until November 24.