Guests of the Royal Wedding donned their finest top hats, tiaras and large, feathery fascinator hats on Friday. So too did the students at St. Peter School, who celebrated by eating wedding cake and watching the festivities on a big screen.
On Thursday, students in grades one through four found invitations on their desks. The invitations invited the students to attend the Royal Wedding, but also informed them that the school had already responded to the Queen, telling her that the students couldn’t attend in person.
Instead, they would celebrate the wedding from afar. The idea sprouted from the combined efforts of Anne Robinson, a first grade teacher, and Colleen Kenyon, a second grade teacher. The two thought it would be a fun way for the kids to witness an important cultural tradition.
At 9 a.m. the students put on hats, gloves and jewelry and gathered together to eat wedding cake. Even the teachers got into the spirit, and they all donned tiaras. Robinson, who wore a pink tiara, pulled the crown off of her head with a groan.
“These are uncomfortable,” she laughed.
At points, the large, flowered hats, baggy gloves and heavy clip-on earrings proved to be too much for the students as well, and the items were discarded to make consumption of cake an easier task.
Between bites, one first grader quipped that the Queen had made two cakes, one to eat at the wedding, and one to send to the United States for St. Peter’s gathering. After finishing their decadent dessert, the kids sat to watch Prince William and his bride, Catherine Middleton, greet the adoring crowds.
The room was filled with murmurs and whispers as the students eagerly commented on the televised events and on each other’s funny hats. Every so often the teachers would have to ask their pupils to quiet down, at which point they would turn off the TV. To the teachers’ amusement, when the telecast was shut off, the children would respond with cheers and applause.
In addition to watching pieces of the live broadcast, the pint-sized “wedding guests” got to color in their very own portraits of William and Kate.
One student, Calei Harris, a first grader, has family from the United Kingdom. Her mother helped to design and construct her fascinator hat, which had large pink plumes. When asked if she was enjoying the celebration, Calei responded with a simple, princess-like nod.
She, her classmates and their teachers were all in high spirits.
“It’s all about the love today,” said Robinson.