Do You Like Chocolate?
The life of the Cadbury family
by Janice Ross
Suitable for Whole School (Pri)
To consider the life of the Cadbury family and the importance of turning our words into actions.
Preparation and materials
- You will need the PowerPoint slides that accompany this assembly (Do You Like Chocolate?) and the means to display them.
- Explain to the children that you are going to show them three sets of three pictures, and you want to see whether they can tell you what each set of pictures has in common.
- Show Slides 1-3.
Ask the children, ‘What is the connection between these three pictures?’ (The answer is that they are all chocolate biscuits.)
- Show Slides 4-6.
Ask the children, ‘What is the connection between these three pictures?’ (The answer is that they are all chocolate bars.)
- Show Slides 7-9.
Ask the children, ‘What is the connection between these three pictures?’ (The answer is that they are all chocolate variety boxes.)
- Show Slide 10.
Ask the children whether any of them know what all of the items have in common. (The answer is that they are all types of chocolate made by Cadbury.) Cadbury products come as chocolate bars, biscuits, drinks, desserts, ice cream and spreads.
- Show Slide 11.
Explain that Cadbury products are made at its factory in Bournville, near Birmingham.
- Show Slide 12.
Every day, the factory produces more than:
- one million Creme Eggs
- five million bars of chocolate
You may wish to ask the children whether any of them have visited Cadbury World.
- Show Slide 13.
Read out the statistic: more than 250,000 Cadbury’s chocolate buttons are made every minute!
Ask the children the following questions.
- How many would that be in an hour? (The answer is 15 million.)
- How many would that be in a day? (The answer is 400 million.)
- Point out that at this time of year, many people give chocolates as a gift.
Ask the children if they know why this might be the case.
- Explain that in February, many people give chocolates to show their love. Like Valentine’s Day cards or flowers, chocolates are another way of showing that you care for someone.
Of course, on its own, the act of giving chocolates is not enough to show someone that we care; we need to show this by our actions and words, too. Otherwise, giving chocolates will just leave us out of pocket!
- During the nineteenth century, the Cadbury family showed by their actions what they really believed. They were members of the Society of Friends, or Quakers, and believed strongly in values such as integrity, equality, simplicity, community, stewardship and peace. They believed that each person was unique and of equal worth in God’s eyes and they opposed anything that might harm or threaten people.
Here are some facts about the Cadbury family.
- In 1824, when he was 22, John Cadbury added a new product to his small tea and coffee shop business in Birmingham and started to sell cocoa and drinking chocolate. As the business grew, he went on to open a factory, which he ran with his brother.
- When John became ill, his two sons, who by this time were in their early twenties, took over. The first five years were very difficult, with long hours of hard work, few customers and little money. However, they survived, and things really started to look up when they bought a special machine from Holland. This machine changed their chocolate-making process, so it became easier to produce delicious-tasting chocolate.
- Later, with the business expanding, the brothers moved their cocoa and chocolate factory to Bournville. Loyal and hardworking workers were treated with respect, paid decent wages and provided with good working conditions. The company also helped its staff to get access to medical treatment when they needed it, form committees to make changes at work and save for old age. This was a new approach to business: it was rare for workers to have these benefits in Victorian times.
- By 1900, the Cadbury estate included 313 cottages and houses for the workers, all with modern interiors and gardens. The grounds also included parks and recreation areas so that the workers had access to health and fitness options free of charge. Later, schools, a swimming pool, a reading room and a hospital would be built on the estate.
- This emphasis on treating workers with respect was carried into campaigns for justice. The Cadbury family was the first organization to stand against the slave trade.
Time for reflection
Ask the children to imagine being a worker at the Cadbury factory in the early twentieth century. Some other factory owners are treating their employees badly, whereas your employer has given you a house to live in, made a doctor available to you if you get sick and built a school for your children to use to get an education. How do you think you would feel?
Listen to a range of responses.
Ask the children to think about how they can follow the Cadbury family’s example of being fair and treating people with respect.
Suggest to the children that they think about this assembly next time they are eating chocolate. Encourage them to use eating chocolate as a reminder that we all have a responsibility to treat others with fairness and respect.
Help us to treat others with dignity and respect.
Help us to put our words into action.
Please help us to act on what we believe.
Help us to show kindness and care to others.