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The 2022 Commonwealth Games

Birmingham 2022

by Claire Law

Suitable for Whole School (Pri)


To identify the values at the heart of the Commonwealth Games.

Preparation and materials

  • You will need the PowerPoint slides that accompany this assembly (The 2022 Commonwealth Games) and the means to display them.
  • Optional: you may wish to have an adult ready to demonstrate some of the sports or point to the countries on a globe during the assembly. If you wish to do so, you will need a badminton racket and shuttlecock, a volleyball, a hockey stick, a bowling ball and some hand weights, and a globe.


  1. Show Slide 1.

    Welcome the children to today’s assembly.

    Explain that you are going to present a short quiz. You are going to show the children a series of sports and you want them to try to identify them. There will also be a bonus question at the end where you will ask what all these sports have in common.

    Optional: you may wish to ask an adult to demonstrate the sport as you show the slides.

  2. Show Slides 2 to 7, pausing after each slide while the children guess which sport is shown.

    - Slide 2 shows badminton.
    - Slide 3 shows beach volleyball.
    - Slide 4 shows hockey.
    - Slide 5 shows lawn bowls.
    - Slide 6 shows wheelchair racing.
    - Slide 7 shows para powerlifting.

  3. Ask the final bonus question: ‘Can anyone work out what all of these sports have in common?’

    Listen to a range of responses.

    The correct answer is that they are all sporting events that will be part of the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

  4. Show Slide 8.

    Ask the children what the Commonwealth Games is. Suggest that we first need to understand what the Commonwealth is.
  5. About a century ago, the British Empire covered a quarter of the Earth’s total land area. It consisted of lands that were ruled or administered by the UK. The world has changed a lot since then, and many of these countries are independent now. They rule themselves and decide their own laws and how they want to elect someone to lead their country.

    However, many of these countries still wanted to work together and be united in some way. So, they chose to become part of what is now called the Commonwealth, a group of 54 countries that have similar shared goals. They have all agreed to work towards a world where there is fairness and peace. The Commonwealth has a combined population of 2.4 billion people, nearly a third of the world’s population.

  6. Queen Elizabeth II is the head of the Commonwealth. She has helped us to understand the Commonwealth as a family of nations.

    Explain that you are going to show the flags of some of the 54 Commonwealth nations.

    Optional: you may wish to arrange for an adult to point to these countries on the globe.

    Show Slides 9 to 13, clicking after each flag to reveal the name of the country that it represents.

    - Slide 9 shows Canada.
    - Slide 10 shows Ghana.
    - Slide 11 shows Pakistan.
    - Slide 12 shows Cyprus.
    - Slide 13 shows Sri Lanka.

  7. So, now that we know what the Commonwealth is, let’s find out about the Commonwealth Games.

    The Commonwealth Games is an international multi-sport event for member countries of the Commonwealth. It takes place every four years, and people often call it the Friendly Games. Just like the Commonwealth itself, the event is built on the values of fairness and peace.  Previous Commonwealth Games have been noted for inspiring athletes to compete in the spirit of friendship and fair play

  8. The opening ceremony of the twenty-second Commonwealth Games is on 28 July 2022. The Games will be held in Birmingham, and teams from most of the Commonwealth countries will compete.

    In many ways, the Commonwealth Games is similar to the Olympics. However, there is an important difference: the Commonwealth Games does not have a separate set of Games for athletes who have disabilities. Instead, the teams are inclusive, so athletes who have disabilities and athletes who don’t are all part of the same team

Time for reflection

So, to summarize, the Commonwealth Games brings people together from around the world to compete in a friendly and fair way. Its inclusive approach to the makeup of the teams, where each team includes people with and without disabilities, differentiates it from other international multi-sport events.

Now let’s think about those values of friendliness, fairness and inclusion, and reflect quietly on what they mean to us.

Let’s think about friendliness. When we are kind to others and welcome them to play with us, we are being friendly. We can be friendly when we play sports, at playtime, in class and outside school.

Let’s think of one thing that we can do today to be friendly.

Pause to allow time for thought.

Let’s think about fairness. In the Commonwealth Games, it’s very important to compete and play fairly. That means not cheating and respecting the rules of the sport and other competitors. When we show respect to others and take turns, we are being fair. When we tell the truth, we are being fair. When we share things out equally, we are being fair.

Let’s think of one thing that we can do today to be fair.

Pause to allow time for thought.

Let’s think about inclusionThe Commonwealth Games includes people from many different countries, and includes people with and without disabilities. We can be inclusive when we find ways to ensure that everyone can join in, and when we stop doing things that might leave people out. We are being inclusive when we ask others what they need to join in. We are being inclusive when we make people feel welcome.

Let’s think of one thing that we can do today to be inclusive.  

Pause to allow time for thought.

Dear Lord,
It is exciting to think that the Commonwealth Games will be starting soon.
Help us to find ways to learn from and be inspired by the Games.
Perhaps we will have the chance to try a new sport, or to learn what motivates some of the athletes to keep going when things are tough.
Please help us to remember the values of the Commonwealth Games: friendliness, fairness and inclusion.
Please help us to be people who are friendly and fair, and include others.
Please help us to be people who bring peace to our world.

Publication date: July 2022   (Vol.24 No.7)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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