Pause for Thought: Love Is . . .
A Valentine’s assembly exploring what love really is
by Becky May
Suitable for Whole School (Pri)
To reflect on the power and value of love.
Preparation and materials
- Have available the YouTube video ‘Kristen Bell, Santino Fontana – Love is an Open Door’ and the means to show it during the assembly. It is 2.05 minutes long and is available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kQDw88hEr2c
- Welcome the children to the assembly and begin by asking how they are feeling today. Do they know what special event happens this month?
- Remind the children that in February, we celebrate Valentine’s Day. Explain that this was originally the day for the Church to celebrate or remember St Valentine, but over time, it has developed into a day to send cards, buy presents or flowers and celebrate love.
- Ask the children to think about what the word ‘love’ means. If they had to finish the sentence ‘Love is . . .’, what would they say?
Listen to a range of responses and talk about some of these as appropriate.
- Tell the children that you are going to show them a video that expresses one understanding of what love is.
Show the YouTube video ‘Kristen Bell, Santino Fontana – Love is an Open Door’.
- Explain to the children that Anna and Hans have apparently fallen head over heels in love: love at first sight! Ask the children what love looks like to Anna and Hans.
- Remind the children that there is so much more to love than this. Love is something that we all experience, and in different ways: the love of parents or carers, of grandparents, siblings, friends . . . these are all different types of love, but they all give us a glimpse of what love is.
Encourage the children to discuss this further.
- Following the discussion, ask the children whether they would like to add anything else to the sentences they came up with in Step 3 above.
Time for reflection
Explain to the children that there is a passage in the Bible that tells us more about what love is like. It is a passage that is often read at weddings.
Invite the children to make themselves still and quiet while you read the passage slowly.
‘Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.’ (1 Corinthians 13.4-8)
Explain that this definition sets the bar pretty high! In truth, as human beings, we do boast and we aren’t always patient and kind. However, when we feel love, we get to experience the qualities in this definition, such as patience and kindness.
Explain that Christians believe that love is God’s gift to earth, so when Jesus came to earth and died on the cross, he did it to demonstrate this love.
If appropriate, read the Bible passage again. Challenge the children to think about how we can show this love to others. How can we be the people to demonstrate love in the world around us?
Thank you for your gift of love.
Please help us to show this love to other people.
‘God is love’ by Nick and Becky Drake, available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sc1wHXmXKsk (4.03 minutes long)
‘Crying out for love’ by Out of the Ark Music, available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G554JF68XZw (2.52 minutes long)
- You might like to create a class display of ‘Love is . . .’ statements, perhaps on simple heart shapes. You could include the Bible passage in your display to encourage the children to continue to reflect upon this.
- As a class - perhaps in circle time - talk about some practical ways in which you can show love to others. There may be things that the children can do in terms of their friends, or that they can do all together on a wider scale to show love to people outside their school community.