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Achieving Our Goals

Moving to secondary school

by Alexandra Palmer

Suitable for Key Stage 2


To offer advice on how to achieve our dreams and goals as we make the transition to secondary school.

Preparation and materials

  • You will need seven children from Year 6, one to represent each school year from Reception to Year 6. They will each need to read out a pre-written sentence about their memories from the year group assigned to them.

  • You will need seven more children from Year 6 (or you could use the same children) to read out a pre-written sentence about their dreams and hopes for the future. This could be what they are looking forward to at secondary school or their hopes for future jobs or life in general.

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

  • Have available the YouTube video ‘The Lord of the Rings – All you have to decide (Gandalf) quote’ and the means to show it during the assembly. It is 3.12 minutes long (stop it at 1.14 minutes) and is available at:


  1. Introduce the seven Year 6 children and ask them to read out their pre-written sentences about their memories of their time at school.

  2. Explain that it’s important to reflect on the time that we have spent at primary school, but it’s also important to think about the future.

  3. Introduce the next set of seven Year 6 children (if applicable) and ask them to read out their pre-written sentences about their dreams and hopes for the future.

  4. Ask the children to put up their hands if they have read The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings trilogy, or if they have watched any of The Lord of the Rings films.

    Ask the children if anyone knows who wrote the books. (The answer is J. R. R. Tolkien.)

  5. Show the image of J. R. R. Tolkien.

    Explain that Tolkien was a Christian and he wanted to use the Bible in his writing. There are many correlations between Christian teaching and the stories that he wrote. One of the main characters in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy is called Gandalf. This figure is full of wisdom and power in the same way that Christians believe that God is full of wisdom and power. However, Gandalf also shows concern for the little hobbit, Frodo, as Christians believe God is concerned about and cares for people today.

  6. Explain that any children who are unfamiliar with these stories will need to know a bit of background before you show them a short clip from one of The Lord of the Rings films.

    - The person at the beginning of the clip is a hobbit called Frodo. Frodo has taken on the challenge to destroy a ring that stands for all evil.
    - Frodo’s adventure has come at considerable cost to himself and others, and he can’t decide whether to continue with his journey.
    - While he is trying to decide, Frodo remembers something that Gandalf said to him.
    - Gandalf is a wizard with long, white hair. He appears in the clip as Frodo remembers Gandalf’s words.
    - Frodo’s great friend, who has undertaken the journey with him, is a hobbit called Sam, who appears at the end of the clip.

    Show the video ‘The Lord of the Rings – All you have to decide (Gandalf) quote’, stopping it at 1.14 minutes.

  7. When the video has finished, pick up on the words Gandalf said: ‘All you have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to you’.

    Explain that these are particularly important words for the Year 6 children who are moving to secondary school, but they are also important words for all of us.

    All of us have decisions to make.

    - Are we going to make new friends?
    - Are we going to try new things, like a new sport or club?
    - What are our dreams?
    - How are we going to behave?

  8. Remind the children about Sam running through the woods and onto the beach. Sam is very important to Frodo because he helps him during many difficult times on Frodo’s journey to destroy the ring.

    Explain the importance of having good friends who will help and support us as we move through our lives. Ask the Year 6 children to think carefully about the characteristics they want in their friends as they move to a new school. Encourage them to find people who, like Sam, will help them to achieve their dreams and ambitions. You may wish to give examples from your own life of people who have helped you to achieve your dreams or ambitions.

Time for reflection

Refer back to Gandalf’s words: ‘All you have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to you.’ Discuss their meaning.

Optional: explain that Christians believe that God has a plan for everyone’s life. However, God will not force people to live in a certain way: he leaves it to us to make decisions about our lives.

We all have choices as we make the journey through life.

- Will we make good choices or bad ones?
Will we live our lives to the full, taking every opportunity that comes our way?
Will we live lives that help others and care for those around us?
Will we make good friendships and be good friends to other people?

Dear God,
Thank you for all those in Year 6.
We pray for them as they move on to new schools.
Please help them to make good choices.
Help them to be kind, caring people.
Help them to make good friends.
Help them to achieve their dreams and ambitions.
May this be true for all of us. 


‘One more step’ (Come and Praise, 47)

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