Don't Watch That! Watch This!
When I lead assembly (or ‘collective worship’ as correctly called) I look for an illustrative story, a picture, an artefact or analogy that the children can relate to easily. I want, like we do in lessons, to capture the attention and engage children in thought.
I hope that that idea resonates and stays with them. Then, when they see the prompt later, or remember the analogy, they also recall the teaching and learning point.
Well, at our last assembly of the year this morning the visual aid I used went and did a whole lot more than I expected or thought it would.
Throw out your action movies and your blockbuster digital cartoons. Pack away the games systems and the smart phones. All you need to get your child enraptured this holiday is a 31-minute film of the tide washing away a sandcastle.
The children ‘oohed’ and ‘ahhed’ at the film as I talked through the assembly, and the message I wanted to give.
And the message?
At the end of the summer term, and for 118 pupils the end of their time at our school, there can be many tears at what will be gone, done and they think lost.
But there is always the next adventure, the next opportunity, the start of something else; the new door that opens.
On Monday we had Tug of War, and considered the rope – the middle is easy to find, but where is the start of a rope, and where is the end? For every end is also a starting point.
The point of the sandcastle film was to illustrate that, once it has gone we can build again. But with the skills, knowledge and experience gained the next sandcastle may be better than the one just gone. We miss was has gone but welcome what is ahead.
We come, then, to the end of another school year, and 118 pupils leave us ready for Secondary School. We hope we have set them up properly so that they thrive and enjoy all that Year 7 will offer. We hope they will think fondly of us, but, in time, come to realise that these were the childhood years and the big adventures lie ahead.
Enjoy your summer, build a sandcastle, sit and watch it wash away. And go back the next day and build another.
We will be here in September, ready for 121 new pupils in Year 3, ready to build our own sandcastles.
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