An assembly from the Culham St Gabriel archive
Suitable for Whole School (Pri) - Church Schools
To explore the reasons behind our choices.
Preparation and materials
You will need to prepare a list of choices to present to the children. These should begin with simple choices and move on to more challenging religious or moral dilemmas. Here are some examples, but you may wish to change them, depending on the children’s ages and the current issues in your school.
- Do you prefer apples or oranges?
- Do you prefer white bread or brown bread?
- Do you prefer to play football or rounders?
- Would you eat a bag of sweets yourself or share them with your friends?
- If you found a ten-pound note in the playground, would you keep it or hand it in to the school office?
- If you saw your friend stealing, would you say nothing or report it?
- You will also need a candle and the means to light it.
Explain that you are going to present the children with a range of questions and you want them to choose which answer they would give. You may ask the children to keep their choices to themselves, or you may ask them to carry out an action to indicate their choice, such as raising their hand, nodding their head and so on.
As you ask each question, allow time for the children to think about their choices. You may wish to ask some children why they made a particular decision.
As the questions become more challenging, allow more time for thought and discussion. You may wish to ask some of the children if they can present reasons why other children should change their minds!
Ask the children to think about the choices that they have already made so far today. Examples might be what time to get up, what to eat for breakfast and which friend to play with when they arrived at school. Ask the children if they have had to make any difficult choices already!
Ask the following questions.
- Is it always easy to make choices?
- How do we decide if we have made the right choice?
Listen to a range of answers.
Point out that some choices are easier than others. Some choices affect only ourselves, but others can affect our friends, our families and others. Remind the children that there are people around us who can help and guide us when we are making important decisions.
Christians also believe that God guides them in the choices they make. They believe that reading the Bible and praying helps them and guides them in their choices.
Time for reflection
Light a candle and ask the children to focus their attention on the flame. In the stillness, reflect together on this piece of advice given to Harry Potter in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J. K. Rowling:
‘It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.’
Ask the children to close their eyes and think about any choices that they need to make.
Thank you that you are always there to help and guide us.
Please help us to make good choices.
Please help us to think about other people when we are making our decisions.
Please help us to care about others in everything we do.
‘One more step along the world I go’ (Come and Praise, 47)