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An assembly from the Culham St Gabriel archive

Suitable for Whole School (Pri) - Church Schools


To reflect on the theme of winning without becoming proud.

Preparation and materials

  • You will need information about a well-known sporting event that is taking place in the near future or has just taken place. Examples for 2017 could include the Wimbledon Championships, the Football World Cup, the Hockey Women’s World Cup and the Test series. You may wish to include information about your school’s sports day!

  • You will need six tissue fish and six pieces of A4 card to waft the fish along the ground in a race. You will also need a start and finish line.

  • Optional: you may wish to have a podium made from stage blocks for bronze, silver and gold positions.


  1. Explain that you need six volunteers to take part in a race. The aim of the game is to waft a tissue fish along the ground from the start to the finish line in as short a time as possible.

  2. Give each volunteer a piece of card and place the six fish on the start line. When all the competitors are ready, say ‘Go!’

  3. After the game, stage an awards ceremony, awarding a medal or sticker for first, second and third place. If a podium is available, ask the winners to stand on the podium to be presented with their awards.

  4. Explain that in many sporting events, the winners stand on a podium to be presented with their medals. A winners podium is one of the ways in which athletes are recognized for what they have achieved. To win a medal at the Commonwealth Games or the Olympics takes years of training. This involves getting up very early in the morning, exercising or practising very hard, only eating the right type of food and perhaps even being away from family and friends for long periods of time. If an athlete wins a medal at a major sporting event, it means that out of all of the countries in the world, he or she is right at the top of that sport. That makes medal winners people who are worth looking up to. Thats why they get to stand on a winners podium at the awards ceremony.

  5. Make the point that, although everyone is looking up at the medal winners, we must never look down on each other or on anyone else. Looking down on people means thinking that we are better than others. Looking down on people is wrong because everyone is of value.

  6. In the Bible, Jesus warned people against looking down on others. To make this point, he told a story, which can be found in Luke 18.10-14.

    Read the following passage from Luke 18.10-14.

    Two men went up to the temple to pray. The first man stood alone, away from the second man, and this is what he prayed.

    ‘Thank you that Im not like other men, especially that man over there. He does lots of things that you say are wrong, whereas I go without food twice a week and give a tenth of what I earn to charity. Thank you for making me so good.’

    But the other man prayed a very different prayer. Not daring to lift up his eyes to heaven, he prayed, ‘God, I have done many wrong things in my life. Please forgive me.’

    ‘And do you know,’ said Jesus, ‘only one of these men went home with his prayer answered?’

Time for reflection

Ask the children which of the two men in the story they think Jesus was referring to when he said that one prayer would be answered.

Listen to a range of responses.

Explain that we have all been given gifts and we all have different talents. However, we should never become proud and conceited. We should never boast about how good we are because it can make other people feel bad. If we concentrate on helping other people see the things that they are good at, we can make them feel good about themselves. When we encourage others, it can also make us feel very happy inside.

Dear God,
Help us to encourage other people.
Help us to use our gifts and talents for the good of others.
Please help us not to become proud, but always to look for the best in those around us.
Help us never to look down on other people, but to remember that everyone is special to you.

Publication date: July 2018   (Vol.20 No.7)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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