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Pause for Thought: A New Adventure

A new school year is starting

Suitable for Whole School (Pri)


To consider that a new school year is full of new opportunities.

Preparation and materials


  1. Ask the children about the different stages that we go through in life.

    Listen to a range of responses.

  2. Show Slides 1 to 6.

    Discuss each picture in turn, asking what it shows and encouraging the children to talk about what may happen at each stage.

  3. Point out that, as babies, we don’t know what the future holds for us. However, all of us have lives ahead of us that will be full of opportunities.

  4. Ask the children whether they have any ideas about what they might like to do for a job when they grow up.

    Listen to a range of responses.

  5. Show Slide 7.

    Discuss what some of the jobs in the picture might entail.

  6. Show Slide 8.

    We use emojis to indicate various emotions. Ask the children to guess each emotion in the picture. (The answers are, going from left to right, astonishment, anger, sadness, happiness, amusement and love.)

    Point out that none of us knows what will happen in the future, but we are all likely to have sad, happy, exciting and worrying times. No doubt we will all sometimes feel cross, angry, jealous or full of laughter.

  7. Ask the children to think back over their lives so far and identify times when they have felt afraid to try something new. Ask if any of them can give examples.

    Listen to a range of responses.

  8. Show Slide 9.

    Explain that at some points in our lives, we all feel like we don’t have the opportunity to do certain things. Sometimes, that can make us feel sad. Over the past year, there have been many times when we haven’t been able to do the things that we might like to do. It feels like a door is closed.

  9. Show Slide 10.

    At other times, we might catch a glimpse of what is ahead.

    Show Slide 11.

    Sometimes, a door will seem to burst open for us and the way ahead may seem clear.

  10. If we want to make the most of our lives, we need to step ahead, through the doorway and into new and exciting things on the other side.

  11. As we start a new school year, there are many wonderful opportunities ahead of us. Let’s all take those opportunities, even if we feel a bit anxious about them.

Time for reflection

Challenge the children to try something new. Point out that it is absolutely fine to feel uncertain or frightened about trying something new. However, we will only find out whether we enjoy something or are good at something if we take the opportunities that come our way.

Christians and other believers do not expect an easier life than anyone else. What they expect and find is that God is there walking with them through life. He will advise, help and encourage people to make the most of all that comes their way. God does not promise an easy journey through life, but he does promise that he will be there beside us.


‘Circle of life’ from the film, The Lion King, available at: (4.06 minutes long)

Publication date: August 2021   (Vol.23 No.8)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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