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Inside out

To help children to see that it is not what we look like on the outside that is important but what we are like on the inside.

by Rebecca Parkinson

Suitable for Whole School (Pri)


To help children to see that it is not what we look like on the outside that is important but what we are like on the inside.

Preparation and materials

  • You will need a variety of items that are meant to help you be beautiful! Such as lipstick, hair gel, toothpaste, deodorant, jewellery, posh clothes.
  • This assembly has been used effectively when looking at ‘stranger danger’ issues by stressing that outward appearances are not always a guide to inner realities.


  1. Show the children one object at a time and ask them how each object is used. For example, the toothpaste makes your teeth clean and shiny. The hair gel helps to make your hair look nice. The jewellery may make you look more attractive.
  2. Point out that all the things you have with you are designed to make us look good on the outside, but they have no effect on what we are like ‘inside’ – how we think and feel. Discuss the fact that it is possible for someone to look lovely on the outside, because of the clothes they are wearing or the make-up they have on, but they may be unpleasant on the inside.
  3. There is a verse in the Bible that says: ‘People look on the outside, but God looks at the heart’ (paraphrase of 1 Samuel 16.7). Ask the children if they can explain this saying, and discuss it with them. Get to the idea that it is what we are like on the inside that really matters – how we think and feel, how generous and kind we are.
  4. Explain that the sort of people we are on the inside is far more important than what we look like. It isn’t wrong to make the most of what we look like, by making our hair look stylish or wearing trendy things, but it is better to work at becoming better people on the inside, where others can’t see – but they will notice the kind of people we are if we are more fun and pleasant to be with.

Time for reflection


Do you look down on some people because they are not the same as you – if they don’t dress the same or listen to the same music? Remind yourself that the most important thing is what those people are like on the inside.



Dear God,

Thank you that material things,

like what we wear or what we look like or how much money we have,

are not the things that matter to you.

Thank you that you look at what we are like on the inside.

Help us to be kind and generous on the inside.



‘Peace is flowing’ (Come and Praise, 144)

Publication date: January 2008   (Vol.10 No.1)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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