'Hello, Scruff!' - a rainy day
Jesus and the Children
by the Revd Sylvia Burgoyne
Suitable for Reception / Key Stage 1
To look at how children can help busy adults get things done so they can spend more time together.
Preparation and materials
- You will need a glove puppet or sock puppet of a donkey, called Scruff.
- As the assembly begins, ensure that you already have Scruff the puppet on your hand.
- Have available the song ‘Jesus' love is very wonderful’ by Richard M. S. Irwin (available to download at: www.hymnswithoutwords.com/hymns/Jesus'_love_is_very_wonderful) and the means to play it at the end of the assembly.
- Scruff waves to the children. Encourage them to say, ‘Hello, Scruff!’
If this is the first time the children have met Scruff, you will need to use the following introduction.
Scruff lives on a farm with Lucy Jane, her mum, Mrs B, her dad, Farmer Brown, and her baby brother, Tom. Lucy Jane loves Scruff. She looks after him. She plays with him and she talks to him – when she’s happy and when she’s sad. Scruff is her best friend!
- It was a rainy Saturday morning. Lucy Jane had brushed Scruff and given him his breakfast. ‘We can’t go for a ride this morning, Scruff, it’s too wet! I’ll have to play indoors. I suppose I could paint a picture or perhaps Mum will let me bake some biscuits. That would be fun! Then I’ve got a new list of spellings to learn, so I’ll ask Mum to give me a test. Yes, that’s a good idea! See you later Scruff.’ Then off she ran, back to the farmhouse.
What do you like to play on rainy days?
- It wasn’t long before Scruff heard Lucy Jane stamping across the wet farmyard in her wellies. She slammed the stable door after her and flopped down on a hay bale in front of Scruff.
‘It’s not fair! Mum says she’s just cleaned the kitchen, so she doesn’t want me to make a mess. So, no, I can’t paint and I can’t bake. She’s still got lots of jobs to do, so she’s too busy to give me a spelling test just now. I’m bored!’
‘Hee-haw! Hee-haw!’ agreed Scruff. He didn’t like rainy days either.
Are your ms and dads too busy to play with you sometimes?
- Lucy Jane sat on the hay bale feeling sorry for herself. After a little while, though, she jumped up. ‘Mum has lots of jobs to do and I’ve got nothing to do. Do you think I should ask her if I can help her, Scruff?’
‘Hee-haw! Hee-haw!’ nodded Scruff.
Lucy Jane was smiling as she ran back to the farmhouse.
- Scruff didn’t see her again until the middle of the afternoon.
‘I’ve been very busy helping Mum, Scruff. I made my bed and put my toys away in the cupboard. I played with baby Tom so Mum could finish the cleaning. Then, I buttered the bread ready for the sandwiches.’
How can you help your mums when they’re very busy?
- ‘Guess what, Scruff? After lunch, Mum thanked me for being “her little helper” and said, if I was careful, I could sit at the kitchen table and paint a picture.’
What do you think was in her painting?
- I’ve been so busy, I didn’t see that the rain has stopped. You’ve had a boring day, Scruff. Shall we go for our ride now?’
Scruff thought that was a great idea. ‘Hee-haw! Hee-haw!’ he nodded.
Take Scruff off.
- Jacob and his mum were running along the road. They’d heard that Jesus was telling stories and making sick people well, but the crowd was so big, Jacob and lots of other boys and girls couldn’t see Jesus at all. Their mums thought it would be a good idea if the children tried to get nearer and some of the grown-ups let them through. They were almost near the place where Jesus was when some men started shouting at them to go away. Couldn’t they see that Jesus was busy? Jacob was so disappointed that he began to cry.
Then he heard someone telling the men, ‘I’d love to see the children. You are wrong to turn them away.’ It was Jesus and he asked the crowd to let the boys and girls come to him.
Jacob quickly dried his eyes and ran forward with the other children to meet Jesus. Jacob never forgot that day. He knew that this kind man was very special.
Do you think that Jesus told the children a story?
Time for reflection
How can you help your Mum, Dad or teacher when they have lots of jobs to do?
I’m glad that you love me.
Thank you that I can always talk to you.
‘Jesus' love is very wonderful’ by Richard M. S. Irwin