This year Her Majesty the Queen reached the diamond jubilee of her accession to the throne of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, marking sixty years from the 6th February 1952 when she was given the news of the death of her father, King George VI and a long weekend for celebrating the jubilee has been planned for June 2nd to June 5th. For the country as well as her and her family, it will be a time of great celebration as only one monarch before her has reached this milestone. A public holiday has been declared and hundreds of major events as well as thousands of smaller ones have been planned to mark the occasion. The event comes just before the other big celebration this year, the 2012 London Olympics and with 2012 also marking the bicentennial of Charles Dickens’ birth; it marks a year of pride for the UK.
The reign of Queen Elizabeth, and indeed, her life has seen greater changes than in the lives of any monarch before including many sad events such as wars, famine and acts of terrorism but over the weekend of celebration, only the happy times will be in people’s minds.
Many schools are planning events to mark the occasion including parties whilst elsewhere whole communities, including schools, are coming together to organise street parties just as happened sixty years ago.
In the lead up to the weekend, most schools will be learning about the queen and her reign and to help you plan for that time, we’ve put together some activities across the topics of history, geography, English and art. If you’ve got a scheme of work in place already, you may be able to slot one or two into the timetable but if you haven’t got down to planning the topic yet, they’ll give you a foundation to build a scheme of work around.
You’ll be able to find out more about her as a person, a mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. We’ll help you discover that she’s not just queen of England as many children and adults think and you’ll also be able to find out what children from around the world think of their queen who lives in another country and what they’re doing to celebrate.
In the art activities you can produce a permanent reminder of the occasion together and look at how the queen has changed over the years in terms of her fashion.
In history we’ll help you put together a visual and audio record of the six decades she has been on the throne whilst in English you’ll get a chance to put yourself in her shoes and say what you think being a world leader for sixty years feels like.