Taking the Blame
The meaning of Easter
by Alexandra Palmer
Suitable for Key Stage 2
To consider the Christian concept that when Jesus died on the cross, he took the blame for the wrong that people had done.
Preparation and materials
- You will need to prepare six sentences describing something wrong that someone might do in school. You will also need six children to read these out during the assembly. Some example sentences are listed below.
- I kept shouting out in class and now I’m in trouble with the teacher.
- I took someone’s lunch and ate it all.
- My teacher saw me tread on someone’s coat when it fell on the floor rather than picking it up.
- You will need an older child who will offer to take the blame for each of the six children. Prepare the older child before the assembly, explaining to him/her that he/she will have to act a role and receive a pretend ‘telling-off’.
- Have available the YouTube video ‘The Chronicles of Narnia – Aslan’s Resurrection’ and the means to show it during the assembly. It is 2.20 minutes long and is available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w0u90NYqTCk
- Explain that you have given six children a sentence about something that would be wrong to do in school. Explain that the children are going to read the statements out loud.
- Invite the six children to the front. Explain that the children are going to pretend that they have done the wrong thing. They are going to say a sentence that states what they have done, but they are only pretending.
- Ask the children to read their sentences. After each child has made his/her statement, an older child should walk up to the child and ask, ‘Can I take the blame for you?’
Each child should answer ‘Yes, please!’
- When the older child has offered to take the blame for each child, he/she should come to you (or another teacher) for a pretend ‘telling-off’.
- Ask the children if they think that it is fair for the older child to take the blame.
Listen to a range of responses.
- Ask the children if they have ever seen the films or read the books about The Chronicles of Narnia, such as The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Prince Caspian or The Voyage of the Dawn Treader.
Ask the children if they know who wrote The Chronicles of Narnia. (The answer is C. S. Lewis.)
- Ask the children if they have ever seen the films or read the books about The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings.
Ask the children if they know who wrote these books. (The answer is J. R. R. Tolkien.)
- Explain that C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien had lots of things in common.
- They were best friends with one another.
- They both lived in Oxford and taught students about writing.
- They both loved to write books.
- Their books have gone on to be best-selling books around the world.
- Their books have been made into films that have been filmed in New Zealand.
In addition, both authors were Christians who wanted to use the Bible in their writing. They both changed some of the people in the Bible into characters for their books. They also changed some of the settings of places in the Bible to use them for their books. Israel and Egypt became Narnia for Lewis and Middle Earth for Tolkien. Both of them then used a special man from the Bible to become one of their main characters. For Lewis, this was Aslan and for Tolkien, it was Gandalf.
- Explain the background to the video that you are about to show from the film The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.
In the story, there are four children called Peter, Edmund, Susan and Lucy. They enter Narnia through the back of a wardrobe. While they are in Narnia, Edmund does something wrong, but - just like the children we heard from earlier who pretended to do those wrong things around the school - Edmund doesn’t take the punishment. Instead, Aslan - a lion who is the rightful King of Narnia - takes the punishment for Edmund, just like the older child did earlier in the assembly. Even though Aslan hadn’t done anything wrong, the White Witch - the self-proclaimed Queen of Narnia - ends up killing him. Here’s what happens next in the film.
- Show the video ‘The Chronicles of Narnia – Aslan’s Resurrection’.
Time for reflection
Ask the children who they think the character of Aslan represents from the Bible.
Listen to a range of responses.
Explain that the answer is Jesus. Christians believe that Jesus died on the cross to take the blame for the wrong things that people have done. This is what Easter is all about.
Thank you that we can come together and celebrate Easter.
Thank you for loving us so much.
Thank you for the Easter story.
Help us to own up when we do wrong.
Help us to be quick to say sorry.
Help us to be quick to forgive.