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A Face in the Crowd?

An assembly from the Culham St Gabriel archive

Suitable for Whole School (Pri)


To develop an understanding that each of us has different qualities and is special.

Preparation and materials

  • If possible, before the assembly, arrange for a school music group to practise a short, well-known piece of music ready to play in the assembly.

  • Have available an image of an orchestra and the means to display it during the assembly. An example is available at:

  • You will need the Bible passage about the children coming to Jesus, which is found in Matthew 19.13–14.


  1. Point out that, in Victorian times, people believed that children should be seen, but not heard. Ask the following questions.

    What do you think those words mean?
    Do you think people have the same view today?
    Do you agree with the statement?

    Listen to a range of responses.

  2. If you have a school music group, ask them to play a well-known song or piece of music.

  3. Ask the children if they can name some of the instruments that are found in an orchestra.

    Show the image of an orchestra.

    Point out some of the instruments and ask the children if they can guess which instrument some orchestras find it the most difficult to get players for. The answer is the second violin. Apparently, this is because everyone wants to play the first violin, but very few musicians want to play second fiddle (hence the saying)!

    Ask the children if they would be happy to play second fiddle.

  4. Point out that if all of the violins in an orchestra played the first violin, the sound would be exactly the same because everyone would be playing the same notes. There would be no harmonies and the sound of the orchestra would be completely different. For an orchestra to sound amazing, each separate instrument needs to perform its own task with its own music. Each musician is valuable and necessary.

  5. Remind the children of the saying, ‘children should be seen, but not heard’. Point out that in an orchestra, it is easy to be missed, but each player is vital.

Time for reflection

Point out how different Jesus’ response to children was to that of the Victorians.

Read or tell the story found in Matthew 19.13-14.

Jesus always saw the importance of children and welcomed them to him.

Dear God,
Thank you that in Jesus’ eyes, we are all special.
Please help us to see the importance of each other.
Please help us to work together to bring harmony to the world.
Please help us to work together to bring harmony within our school and our homes.


Shine, Jesus, shine (Mission Praise, 445)

Publication date: August 2020   (Vol.22 No.8)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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