British Legion: Thank You

The young teenager from Cornwall who fooled the army into allowing him to fight for his country. The nurse who left her hometown for the first time to help wounded soldiers on faraway battlefields. The ambitious surgeon who pioneered a new form medicine. The poet who captured the horror and despair of his fellow soldiers. The Muslim man who became the first Indian to win a Victoria Cross for bravery…

One hundred years ago, the First World War was drawing to a close. The conflict was truly global; it involved 32 countries and touched the lives of millions of people across the world.

And when it was over, that world was transformed forever.

To commemorate the anniversary of the armistice, The Royal British Legion is saying “Thank You” to the generation of the First World War. “It is time to think about all of those who lived through this tragic and remarkable time — and who put Britain on the path to becoming what it is today,” says the charity.

Over the next eight weeks, The Day will be publishing weekly themes and activities on different aspects of the First World War, in association with the Legion. Read them in advance, or find out how to get your school involved in the Thank You campaign.

The Royal British Legion has also created free downloadable assemblies and lesson plans with the National Literacy Trust. There are six sets of five lesson plans, two each for Key Stages 2, 3 and 4, accompanied by an assembly plan each for primary and secondary schools.

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This video introduces the British Legion’s Thank You campaign. Use it to start a discussion about why soldiers fought in the First World War, and the meaning of saying “thank you”.


  1. As a class, list as many of the causes of the First World War as you can think of. Then rank them in order importance.
  2. Class debate: This house believes that the First World War was a just war.
  3. Research someone who lived through the First World War who you think deserves our thanks. Create a presentation about their life, achievements, and what you think we should be grateful for. If they were killed, see whether a tribute has been left on the Every One Remembered website.