Why does love matter?
by Becky May
Suitable for Whole School (Pri)
To explore why love is so important.
Preparation and materials
- You will need a Valentine’s Day card, preferably in a red envelope, and a packet of Love Heart sweets.
- Note: this assembly involves some of the children consuming Love Hearts. Please check your school’s policy and allergy information before the assembly commences.
- Optional: you may wish to use some love-heart themed decorations to decorate the room.
- Welcome the children and ask if any of them can think of something special about this time of year.
Listen to a range of responses.
- Show the Valentine’s Day card in the envelope.
Invite the children to share their ideas about what the envelope might contain.
Listen to a range of responses.
- Explain that this month, on 14 February, we celebrate Valentine’s Day. Officially, this is a special day when we remember St Valentine, but most people use it to celebrate love in general. People might send a special Valentine’s Day card and present to someone they love.
You may like to comment, ‘I wonder if anyone here has sent any Valentine’s Day cards this year!’
- Point out that at this time of year, there are lots of heart-themed items, teddy bears and red roses on display in the shops. It is a good time to stop and think about love and what it means.
- Ask for three or four volunteers, pointing out that they won’t have to send any Valentine’s Day cards! Alternatively, you could ask another member of staff to help you with this.
- Show the packet of Love Heart sweets.
Pass the packet along the line of volunteers and ask each of them to take a sweet and read out the message on it before they eat it.
- Explain that these words or phrases may sound wise or sensible, they may make sense to the person who has read them or they may be complete nonsense!
Refer to some of the examples that the children have read out and discuss whether they made sense. Use a few more sweets to emphasize your point.
- Explain that this assembly has been a bit of fun, thinking about romantic love and how we celebrate that at this time of year. It has also encouraged us to be a bit silly, looking for words of wisdom about love in a packet of sweets.
Sometimes, we think of love as something that’s a bit silly, or even embarrassing. However, it is so much bigger than that. We may get a bit embarrassed if our grandma kisses us goodbye at the school gate, or even worse if our parents hold hands on the way home! However, all of us want to be loved. Most of us enjoy being picked up from school, someone making our tea when we get home or being given a present or a lovely surprise. Most of us would feel sad if no one ever spoke to us or we lived all by ourselves. Likewise, most of us would feel sad if people at home or in school spent the day shouting at each other and arguing. (You can give further examples, being aware of difficult situations that the children may be facing.)
- Love is so much bigger than holding hands and eating sweets. It’s more important than Valentine’s Day cards and teddy bears. We need to feel loved and to show love to others in the way that we care for them, show them kindness and think about others and what they need. Love is not something to be embarrassed about; it’s something that we can all celebrate!
Time for reflection
The Bible has a lot to say about love. It says that human beings were created to love one another and live together in communities. It also says that God loved the world so much that he sent Jesus to earth. Jesus had a lot to say about love, too. Some of the things that he said sounded a bit strange - almost as if they came straight out of a packet of Love Hearts! However, these messages weren’t made-up nonsense, they were challenging instructions for his followers.
Jesus said that we should love other people as we love ourselves; that means that we should look to see what other people need first before looking after ourselves. Jesus also said that we should love our enemies. That can be really challenging: looking to treat people with kindness when they may be out to hurt us. It could seem like nonsense, like a sweet out of the packet, but imagine what would happen if everyone put this into practice and actively tried to show love and kindness to those around them. It would make a massive difference.
Let’s make ourselves quiet inside for a few minutes and think about what we can do to show love to other people today. It may be to our parents, perhaps giving them a hug when they pick us up from school. It may be to our friends, showing them kindness today. If we really wanted to challenge ourselves, though, imagine what might happen if we chose to play with someone we don’t usually even talk to. How much love can we show today?
Pause to allow time for thought.
Thank you that you love us and that you have given us friends and family who love us here in this place.
Please help us to show love to other people today and to be courageous in the way we do this.
Please help us to be bold enough to love people whom we find it difficult to love.
Thank you that you always love us.
‘You can reach out’ by Doug Horley, available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SZ9_TsctGi4 (4.23 minutes long)
‘All you need is love’ by The Beatles, available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_7xMfIp-irg (3.51 minutes long)