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The Queen’s Jubilee

The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee weekend runs from 2 to 5 June 2022

by Claire Law

Suitable for Whole School (Pri)


To consider what we can learn from how the Queen greets people.

Preparation and materials

  • Have available the YouTube video ‘How to say hello in different languages’ and the means to show it during the assembly. It is 0.51 minutes long and is available at:
  • You will need a globe that has stickers placed to indicate Tibet, Qatar, France and New Zealand.
  • Further information about different types of greetings around the world is available at:


  1. I wonder if we can think of ways to say hello in different languages.

    Ask the children, ‘Does anyone know how to say hello in another language?’

    Listen to a range of responses.

    If appropriate, encourage the children to teach the word to the other children.

  2. Tell the children that you are going to show them a video of lots of people saying hello in different languages.

    Show the YouTube video ‘How to say hello in different languages’ (0.51 minutes long).

  3. Point out that we don’t need to use only words to greet someone.

    Ask the children whether they can think of other ways in which we might say hello.

    Listen to a range of responses.

    In fact, there are many different ways to greet people.

    Show the globe and point to Tibet.

    In Tibet, sticking out your tongue is a way of saying hello.

    Point to Qatar on the globe.

    In Qatar, it is customary to bump noses with each other.

    Point to France on the globe.

    In France, people greet each other by touching their cheek to the other person’s.

    Point to New Zealand on the globe.

    In New Zealand, there is a traditional Maori greeting called the hongi. People press their noses together, and sometimes join their foreheads too, in a custom known as the sharing of breath.

    Point to the UK on the globe.

    In the UK, a handshake is a customary way to greet someone. 

    Shake hands with some of the children.

  4. Whatever we do to greet people, by offering them a greeting, we are showing them respect. We are showing that we are interested in them and want to connect with them. We are showing that they matter as fellow human beings.

    Imagine how rude it would seem if we came into school and didn’t say hello to other people. Or if our teacher didn’t welcome us with a cheerful ‘Good morning’.

  5. Someone who knows a lot about greeting people is the Queen. She has reigned over the UK for more than 70 years, which is longer than any other British king or queen in history. She became queen at the age of 25, when her father, King George VI, died suddenly. This month, we celebrate her Platinum Jubilee, marking her 70 years of service as Queen Elizabeth II. A four-day bank holiday weekend to celebrate the jubilee begins on Thursday 2 June.

  6. During her reign, the Queen has visited countries all around the world and greeted many people. In addition, she supports hundreds of charities and attends events in connection with her charity work. The Queen also hosts garden parties at Buckingham Palace and invites people who have helped their community in some way. At the parties, people can meet the Queen and other members of the Royal Family and talk to them about their work.

  7. The Queen has greeted millions of people during the course of her life. They have been from many different countries and of many different faiths. She has shaken hands with many famous people including Lady Gaga, Boris Johnson and Donald Trump. Other people who have shaken hands with the Queen are ordinary people who are neither wealthy nor famous.

  8. One important point to remember: if we ever meet the Queen, we shouldn’t offer our hand to shake first. Instead, we should wait for the Queen to offer her hand to us!

Time for reflection

Let’s take a moment to think about what we can learn from how the Queen greets people. 

When she meets someone and shakes their hand, she often takes a moment to speak with them and give them her attention. She shows them respect and makes them feel that they are worthy of her time.

The Queen has explained how her faith helps her in this. She is a Christian, and in her Christmas message of 2004, she explained how Jesus’ story about the Good Samaritan had influenced her.

In the story of the Good Samaritan, Jesus tells us about someone who helped someone else, and treated them with care and respect, even though they were from a different country and religion.

In her speech, the Queen said, ‘For me as a Christian, one of the most important . . . teachings is contained in the parable of the Good Samaritan, when Jesus answers the question, “Who is my neighbour?” . . . Everyone is our neighbour, no matter what race, creed or colour. The need to look after a fellow human being is far more important than any cultural or religious differences.’

The Queen’s message is clear - treating other people with kindness and being welcoming is important. We can make others feel welcome through our words and our actions, just as the Queen makes people feel welcome by saying hello and shaking hands.

Let’s take a moment to be still and quiet. We are going to think about three questions.

- First, let’s think about how we can be kind and welcoming to people in our class today. What can we do and say to help others to feel welcome?

Pause to allow time for thought.

- Next, let’s think about people in school who are not in our class. They might be younger or older children, or teachers and adults in school. What can we do and say to help them to feel welcome today?

Pause to allow time for thought.

Finally, let’s think about people who are outside school, other people in our lives. What can we do and say to help them to feel welcome today?

Pause to allow time for thought.

Now, we will take a moment to pray. We will be asking God to help us to be people who are kind and welcoming to other people. We will also ask God to bless the Queen and we will thank God for all her years of service.

Dear God,
You call us to be welcoming to others.
Our Queen has given us a wonderful example of what welcoming others looks like in practice.
During her 70-year reign, she has greeted people from around the world and shaken hands with many different people.
She has given her time and attention to many people.
We thank you for our Queen and her example of welcome.
God bless our Queen.
We pray that we can be inspired by her to be welcoming to others.
May our celebrations of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee inspire us to be like the Good Samaritan, and like our Queen, by being kind and welcoming to everyone.


The UK national anthem, available at: (2.04 minutes long)

‘Rise up and serve’, commissioned by HOPE Together and partners, available at: (4.08 minutes long)

Extension activities

  1. Research the special activities that are taking place to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Information is available at:
Publication date: June 2022   (Vol.24 No.6)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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