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Incy wincy spider: An 'up-the-spout' assembly

To show the importance of perseverance and resilience in attaining goals.

by The Revd Alan M. Barker

Suitable for Key Stage 1


To show the importance of perseverance and resilience in attaining goals.

Preparation and materials

  • Two sets of Jenga building blocks or other suitable building materials.
  • You will need to be familiar with the actions and words of the song ‘Incy Wincy spider’.
  • A downloadable video of ‘Incy Wincy spider’ can be found at
  • Prepare two readers or a group of readers for the conversation in ‘Time for reflection’.  


  1. Introduce the building materials with the thought: ‘I wonder who might build the highest tower?’

    Invite two children to build towers, emphasizing that the goal (or aim) is to construct the tallest tower.

    Consider how the materials might be arranged differently to strengthen the structure and increase the height.

    Commiserate should a tower fall and encourage another attempt. Congratulate the participants and affirm their readiness to try.
  2. Explain that the task presented a challenge. A challenge isn’t easy. It tests our skill and patience. If we are to succeed with a challenge, we will need to keep trying. 
  3. Refer to a song about a character who aimed high and kept trying.

    Enjoy singing (with actions) ‘Incy Wincy spider’. Reflect that even when Incy Wincy’s adventure didn’t go according to plan, Incy Wincy didn’t give in.
  4. Identify some of the challenges that the children face in school. Some goals aren’t easily reached and at times everyone feels down and disappointed. However, there’s encouragement in the example of Incy Wincy spider!
  5. Introduce another verse to the song, using the same actions:

    When you face a challenge, do the best you can.
    We all feel down when things don’t go to plan.
    Look on the bright side. Have another try.
    Be like Incy Wincy, and keep on aiming high!

Time for reflection

Reader 1  A water spout is so tall, and a spider is so small!

Reader 2  Up we go!
Reader 1  It’s dark in here.

Reader 2  Look up – you can see the sky!

Reader 1  It’s getting dark, I think it might rain.

Together  OH NO!

Reader 1  Are you all right?

Reader 2  I think so.

Reader 1  What shall we do now?

Reader 2  Well, the sun’s come out.

Together  LET’S TRY AGAIN!

Dear Lord,
when at first we don’t succeed,
help us to try, try again.


‘One more step along the world I go’ (Come and Praise, 47)
The assembly might be concluded with the video clip of ‘Incy Wincy spider’.

Publication date: February 2013   (Vol.15 No.2)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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