An inclusive ethos, values for all and sharing culture, assemblies are for everyone
the notion of everybody
Our policy for Assemblies and Religious Education sets out what we do in school to make assemblies accessible to everyone. Our Prospectus and Curriculum document also give information about 'worship', religious education and assemblies. We have developed a policy and practice that enables people of all faiths and none to participate happily. Parents do have the right to withdraw their child but for the overwhelming majority of assemblies, the vast majority of the time, all children are present and correct. Which is great. Great because if assemblies are worth doing they have value. Assemblies really are an important part of the day for bring classes, phases and the school together, sharing values, culture and so building a strong community where everyone is valued and everyone is welcome.
Monday - Usually a whole school assembly. In the Autumn term we focus on caring for ourselves; in Spring, other people and social justice; in Summer our focus is caring for the environment and climate justice.
Wednesday - KS2 have a Big Sing. We sing secular and some hymns and songs with more religious content. The lyrics (vocabulary) are explored and thought about, whether it is Over the Rainbow or Jerusalem!
Thursday - A Key Stage assembly alternates with Community Assembly. Community Assembly is when the children take over: year 6 lead discussion on themes being taught and thought about in school.
On other days there are periods for class reflection.
Below are some slides used in assemblies last term. They don't cover everything but give a flavour of what we've been reflecting on, pondering and supposing.
Autumn term assemblies focussed on caring for ourselves. We included opportunities to think about how this also relates to respect for other people and our environment.Manners Maketh Man (and Woman): we sorted the old fashioned into the timeless.The path we choose: life as a path is a metaphor we sing about in Amane Utupe.Real Rewards of Reading: shared recent reading and how it enriches life. Reading for pleasure will mean you know more, can think more deeply and so find the world more interesting and enjoyable. Value of Education: reflected on what we take for granted.British Values: thinking about Freedom, Democracy and Rule of Law as participation and democracy as a civic responsibility as well as a right. Naturally Smart: on a sunny day in November, possibly the last one for a while, we thought about how a simple thing like a name changes how we think about things: when we know someone’s name we care about them and respect them more. We then went outside and found the different trees which we could now name. Colour Monster: a book to help understanding and regulating our feelings. Children were encouraged to mentalise their feelings – rather than just being angry, sad or happy, be able to think ‘I feel happy…or sad…or angry.’ Mentalising helps children with self-regulation; rather than just act to others angrily they can mentalise,’I feel angry, it’s a feeling. How do I manage it for myself and other people?’Our Code of Conduct: how it all helps ourselves. We have a happier culture. We also reflected on how, if people always lived up their responsibilities we would not need rules or laws at all!The Red Wall: overcoming fear of unknown and value of courage in life. Walls can keep us safe, like the fence around school. Are safe walls around us always a good thing? Making you way in world and achieving well involve risk taking and courage.