St Valentine's Day

23rd January 2009 at 00:00
Dates and events to inspire pupils

What's it all about?

On the face of it, an enormous commercial opportunity, as well as being a festival of which most of your pupils will be aware.

Assembly ideas

Most, if not all, pupils will know that February 14 is Valentine's Day, and some will be sending or receiving anonymous cards.

You can give new meaning to the day by telling them about St Valentine, who was a Christian doctor in Ancient Rome.

Tell them that he was a kind man, who tried to make his medicines taste less bitter, and that he found himself treating a blind girl. He knew it would be difficult and he prayed for her and treated her each week. She did not get better, and Valentine was arrested. He quickly wrote a note for the girl and was executed the same day, February 14 AD270.

The girl visited his shop and found the note, saying From your Valentine. Inside was a crocus - and for the first time she could see its colours.

You could also tell them that there was another Valentine living at around the same time, who was also executed, for marrying young lovers at a time when Emperor Claudius wanted men to concentrate on war. It is possible that the two men are the same. Which Valentine do your pupils think inspired the festival?

Help, I've no time to prepare

There is a readymade assembly for younger secondary pupils at www.teachernet.gov.ukteachingandlearningassembliesindex.cfm?mode=searchdisplayid=53history=keyword.

Where can I go for more information?

www.teacherplanet.comresourcevalentines.php.

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