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A Story for Advent

An assembly in the ‘Hello, Scruff!’ series

by the Revd Sylvia Burgoyne (revised, originally published in 2013)

Suitable for Reception / Key Stage 1


To remind us of the Christian belief that God always keeps his promises.

Preparation and materials

  • You will need a glove puppet or sock puppet of a donkey, called Scruff.
  • As the assembly begins, ensure that you already have Scruff the puppet on your hand.


  1. Scruff waves to the children. Encourage them to say, ‘Hello, Scruff!’

    If this is the first time the children have met Scruff, you will need to use the following introduction.

    Scruff lives on a farm with Lucy Jane, her mum, Mrs B, and her dad, Farmer Brown. Lucy Jane loves Scruff. She looks after him. She plays with him and she talks to him – when she’s happy and when she’s sad. Scruff is her best friend!

  2. One morning, Lucy Jane ran across the farmyard and into the stable. ‘Guess what, Scruff? Mum says I’m going to have a new baby brother or sister soon.’

    It couldn’t be soon enough for Lucy Jane, but she told Scruff that there were lots of things to get ready for when the baby did arrive.

    ‘Today, I’m helping to paint the baby’s bedroom,’ she said. ‘I’m not sure what colours we’ll use. What do you think, Scruff?’

    Ask the children, ‘What colour do you think Lucy should paint the walls? What are your favourite colours?’

  3. ‘We’re off to town this afternoon to buy a new pram/buggy/stroller (use the local word),’ Lucy Jane continued. ‘I wonder what it will be like. There are so many to choose from!’

    Ask the children, ‘Do any of you have little brothers and sisters who use a pram/buggy/stroller? What are they like?’

    ‘Mum says she’s going to bring down my cot from the loft and I can help her to make new covers for it,’ said Lucy Jane, stroking Scruff’s nose.

    It wasn’t easy for Lucy Jane to wait. ‘Do you think the baby will come today, Scruff?’

    Get Scruff to shake his head and then take him off your hand.

  4. Do you like waiting? Say, for your birthday party, or Christmas morning, or a picnic?

    Listen to a range of responses.

  5. God promised his people that he would send them a king. He asked them to get ready for when the king came by thinking about the wrong things they had said and done and saying, ‘Sorry’. He asked them to keep remembering that God loved them no matter how bad they were sometimes.

    They waited . . . and waited . . . for more than 500 years. Would their new king ever come? Had God forgotten his promise?

    No! God never forgets a promise, but he was waiting for the right time to send the new king. When the time was right, the new king came!

Time for reflection

Babies take a long time to grow in their mummies’ tummies. We have to wait patiently for the right time for them to be born.

What special event are we waiting for at the moment?

There may be all sorts of answers, as well as Christmas. Explain that the special time of waiting before Christmas is called Advent. It is special time for Christians to prepare their hearts, ready to remember the coming of Jesus at Christmas.

Let’s try to be patient while we wait for good things to come!


Any Christmas songs.

Extension activities

  1. Some great ideas to make simple Advent calendars are available at:
    Maybe you could make one for the classroom.

  2. There are lots of Advent activities available at:
Publication date: November 2020   (Vol.22 No.11)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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