The Birthday of Guru Nanak
What's it all about?
This year, November 13 is celebrated as the birthday of Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism. He was born in 1469 and at the age of 30 mysteriously disappeared for three days. On his return, he began to preach the Sikh faith. Each year Sikhs celebrate together with hymns and lectures on Sikhism, followed by the sharing of a meal.
Start by telling pupils why this is such a special festival for Sikhs. If any of your pupils are Sikh, they might like to talk about how they and their family celebrate.
Then you could ask what makes a good teacher. Or for older children, take it in a different direction by asking: what makes a good leader?
You could use a flip chart to note the suggestions but either way, get the pupils to suggest qualities before going on to say that a guru is a special kind of leader or teacher.
Then tell the story of Guru Nanak, giving as much detail as you want, and perhaps using a map to show where he lived. Explain how he disappeared in the local river for three days and on his return brought messages from God. One that Sikhs think is important is that everyone is equal and equally loved by God.
You could end by pointing out that it is wrong to laugh at or fight with people who appear different and reinforce that we are all equal.
Help! I don't have enough time to prepare
Where can I go for more information?
For more on Guru Nanak, try www.bbc.co.ukschoolsreligionsikhismgurunanak. shtml. For images, go to images.google.co.uk and type the search term Guru Nanak.