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Tough Choice!

What happens when you have to make a difficult decision?

by Becky May

Suitable for Key Stage 2


To explore why some decisions are difficult to make and to encourage us to respect those who need to make tough choices.

Preparation and materials

  • You will need a list of questions prepared for the ‘Would you rather?’ game in the ‘Assembly’, Step 3.
  • Have available some images of the Houses of Parliament and the means to display them during the assembly:

    - the Houses of Parliament, available at:
    - inside the House of Commons, available at:
    - inside the House of Lords, available at:


  1. Good morning! I wonder if you can think of a time when you had to make a difficult decision. This morning, we’re going to be thinking about people who often have to make tough choices.
  2. We’re going to begin by playing a game called ‘Would you rather?’ It involves asking a series of questions. For each question, you will be offered two choices, and you will need to vote for the option that you would rather take.

    The game can be played in various ways, depending on how much space is available and how much you would like the children to move. You could ask the children to indicate their choice by moving to one side of the room, by turning to face one wall or another, or simply by a show of hands.

    Vary the difficulty of the questions depending on the age range of the children. Any questions that give the children a choice between two options can be used.

  3. Would you rather:

    - travel by plane or by boat?
    - live in the frozen Arctic or on the Equator?
    - have only pizza to eat for the rest of your life or never have to eat peas again?
    - have extra-large feet or extra-small hands?
    - be a famous footballer or a famous artist?

    Continue with further rounds as appropriate, involving a mixture of some more serious questions, and others that are just for fun. When the game has finished, gather the children together again.
  4. Point out that we make decisions every day of our lives. Ask the children whether they can think of any decisions that they have already made today.

    Listen to a range of responses.

    Ask the children whether they can think of any decisions that they will make in the future.

    Listen to a range of responses.
  5. Point out that some decisions, like which pair of socks to wear, are easy, but sometimes, we have to make a more difficult choice. Perhaps we have had to choose whether we will go to one club or another. Perhaps we have had to choose only a few of our friends to come to our birthday party.

    Ask the children, ‘What helps you to make a difficult decision?’

    Listen to a range of responses.
  6. Some people have positions or roles where they have to make even more difficult decisions on behalf of other people. Look at our parents: they have to make choices for us, such as choosing where we live, which school we will attend and who will look after us while they are at work. Our head teacher has to make choices for all of us, too, like deciding how to to spend the school budget, how we can all learn in the best way or which teachers get a job at this school.

    Ask the children, ‘Can you think of any other jobs where people have to make difficult decisions for us?’

    Listen to a range of responses.
  7. Did you know that the adults in our country vote to choose a group of people who will make some important decisions on behalf of us all? These people are called our MPs, or Members of Parliament. They work together in groups called parties, which are teams of people who believe in similar things and work together to achieve those aims. The biggest ‘team’ is our government, which is led by our prime minister.

    Show the images of the Houses of Parliament.
  8. The government often has very difficult decisions to make about things that will affect all of us. For example, it has to decide how much money to spend on our schools or hospitals, and create new laws that we all have to follow. Many of these decisions are hard and sometimes, if the government chooses to do something that people do not like, it becomes very unpopular!
  9. One day, perhaps some of us here will have jobs that involve making tough decisions. Perhaps there is even a future MP sitting in this room!

    If we don’t like the decisions that our leaders make on our behalf, we can tell them about it by sending letters to them. However, we should always act with respect, and remember that some decisions are very hard to make.

Time for reflection

The Bible reminds us that we should show respect for those who govern us. In 1 Peter 2.17, it says; ‘Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honour the emperor.’

We don’t have an emperor, but we can still show respect for those who have been chosen to lead us. It’s a good idea to take an interest in the choices that they make, and we dont have to agree with everything that they decide, but we can still be respectful in the way in which we choose to communicate with them.

Let’s make ourselves really quiet for a moment and think about how we felt at the start of the assembly when we had to make all those choices. Silly choices are just for fun: we don’t mind making those! But how can we show respect to those who make decisions on our behalf and honour them as individuals?

Pause to allow time for thought.

Dear God,
Thank you for the many opportunities that we have to make decisions.
Thank you for the freedom that we enjoy in this country to make choices for ourselves.
We remember all those who make decisions on our behalf: our parents, our teachers and those who govern this country.
We ask you to give them wisdom in the choices that they make.
Help us to treat all people with respect.


‘We’re in it together’ by Mark and Helen Johnson

Publication date: June 2019   (Vol.21 No.6)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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