By Justin Seward
Some of St. Michael’s School’s Grades 7, 8 and 9 students took it upon themselves on Nov. 6 to host a virtual Remembrance Day ceremony for their fellow peers.
While students were kept in their cohorts, the school found a way to celebrate Remembrance Day in the traditional means with the moment of silence at 11 a.m.
“My Grade 7, 8, 9 Religion class, I tasked them with being a part of my group to put on Remembrance Day for our staff and students,” said Sarah Crooymans, the school’s Remembrance program coordinator.
“On Friday, they (were) going to lead a live Google Meet presentation with the entire school and we will all come together at the same time and view their presentation. Each student can then view our normal Remembrance Day programming through their screens- which is kind of unique- and is a great way for these students to kind of showcase their technology capabilities that they’ve all become familiar with.”
The student’s presentation will also include the national anthem and Last Post.
Crooymans was approached by another staff member and asked about her plan for this year’s ceremony.
“We kind of discussed at staff meetings altogether what would be the best way,” she said.
“We’ve done few assemblies in the school where we’ve gone cohort by cohort. But with the spirit of Remembrance Day and everybody gathering at that time-kind of being the tradition of the whole Remembrance Day- we knew that separate assemblies for each group wasn’t going to be possible. That’s how this live presentation of Remembrance Day came about.”
With the students getting that experience of hosting Remembrance Day, Crooymans says they’re getting the extra life skills and preparing them for the future.
“You never know what jobs or things they will be a part of,” she said.
“They might have to present something at work and things like that. We’ve really tried to encourage to step up and take on these roles of public speaking, putting presentations together, just to teach them those life skills. Each of our students are fortunate enough to have in Grade 7, 8 and 9 their own Chromebook devices. That made it really easy for them to work on this presentation.”
Crooymans shared her expertise in what needed to be included in the presentations and what has been done in the past.
“They also talked about ways of include video,” she said.
“There will be a moment when there is some video of a song that the students chose to share that reflects the spirit of Remembrance Day. Of course because we’re a Catholic school, they’ve included elements of faith- including opening and closing prayers.”
The students will have their poppy art project as a backdrop to their presentation.
The presentation ran for 20 to 30 minutes.