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Time to Think

An assembly from the Culham St Gabriel archive

Suitable for Key Stage 2


To encourage us to take time for self-evaluation and reflection.

Preparation and materials

  • You will need a whistle and a volunteer to blow the whistle at the start of, and during, the assembly.

  • You will also need a calendar.


  1. When the children have settled, the volunteer should blow the whistle unexpectedly and the leader should begin to read the following story immediately.

    Jo had waited ages to play for the school team and now, at last, the day had arrived. He had been so excited when he got up that morning. He’d made sure that he had everything ready for the match - his kit was all clean and ready to wear and he couldn’t wait to wear the new boots that he had received for his birthday. He knew the opponents were a good team - in particular, they had a good goalscorer called Kate. Jo knew Kate because they lived on the same street.

    During the match, everything was going well until Kate scored a goal in the last minute. The goalkeeper had done his best to stop it, but the ball had swerved into the top right-hand corner of the net and the score was 3-2. Jo walked slowly off the field . . .

  2. Ask the children how they think Jo would be feeling as he walked off the field. Ask the children if there are times when they have felt disappointed.

    Listen to a range of responses.

  3. At an appropriate moment, the volunteer should unexpectedly blow the whistle a second time. Ask the children why they think the whistle has been blown again. Establish that, although they may have assumed that the match had ended, it was in fact half-time! Ask the children what they think the coach would have said to Jo’s team during half-time. Establish concepts such as encouragement, not giving up, having determination, doing their best and so on.

  4. Explain that you do not have the end of the story, so you don’t know what happens in the second half. You may wish to suggest that the children use this as the start of a story that they could complete in class or at home.

  5. Take out a calendar and identify the dates for a forthcoming holiday or weekend. Explore with the children ideas relating to holidays being like half-time - an opportunity to rest and think about what they have done and how they have acted during the previous weeks. Have they worked hard? Have they been kind? Have they made mistakes? Have they not done as well as they might have done? Explore the idea that holidays, like half-time in a match, are an opportunity for everyone to have a rest, think and get ready for the next part of the year. They are a chance to put things right and do better.

Time for reflection

Ask the children to close their eyes and think about the last few weeks. Ask them to reflect on the following questions. Pause to allow time to think after each question.

Have you been kind?
- Have you worked hard?
- Have you made mistakes?
- Have you not done as well as you might have done or have you done even better?
- Have you been a good friend?
- Do you need to say sorry to anyone?

Dear God,
Thank you that you know us.
Thank you that you love us even when we make mistakes and get things wrong.
Help us to be kind.
Help us to work hard.
Help us to put mistakes right and always to be willing to say sorry.
Help us to be good friends and always to help those in need.


‘When I needed a neighbour’ (Come and Praise, 65)

Publication date: April 2017   (Vol.19 No.4)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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