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Behaviour Matters

Pointers towards good behaviour

by Helen Gwynne-Kinsey

Suitable for Whole School (Sec)


To consider the need for appropriate behaviour.

Preparation and materials

  • You will need the PowerPoint slides that accompany this assembly (Behaviour matters) and the means to display them.


  1. It would be great to think that everyone here absolutely loves coming to school! It would be great to think that each one of you looks forward to coming back to school after a holiday! It would be great to think that you will all have the opportunity to enjoy learning in a pleasant environment where everyone shows respect, and where everyone is sensible at all times.

    However, it is likely that these three things are not true for all of you! Sometimes, students don’t enjoy school. If you were asked, quite a lot of you would possibly say that you would rather be on holiday, and sometimes, it can be difficult to learn when some students decide to behave in inappropriate ways.

  2. There are many reasons why people behave in particular ways. We often learn our behaviour from those around us, whether they are family, friends or peers. In some cases, this can be a good thing, but at other times, it can lead us into doing things that are not acceptable, and that we would not normally have considered taking part in.

  3. In our society, we have a system of laws so that we can deal with people appropriately if they have behaved badly. When people are found guilty of wrongdoing, they are punished. This is the same within the school community. If a school is to function well, it needs a code of conduct that includes penalties for those who decide to ignore the rules. The penalties are intended to be positive and constructive so that everyone has the opportunity to learn from their mistakes and to change their behaviour for the better.

  4. In the Bible, in Luke 13.6-9, Jesus told a parable that illustrates this idea well. In the parable, there was a man who had a tree that did not bear fruit for three years. He told his gardener to cut down the tree because he thought that it was a waste of space. However, the gardener asked if he could give the tree one more year, saying that he would look after it very carefully in that time to promote the growth of fruit.

  5. The parable indicates that people should be given a second chance. It suggests that people sometimes need a bit of extra help to grow and change, but they deserve the opportunity to change and to put their behaviour right.

  6. Look at the following simple advice on what to do if you want to change your behaviour or avoid inappropriate behaviour in the first place.

    Show each slide in turn.

    Show Slide 1: Be honest and, if you are not happy with your behaviour, admit it to yourself.

    Show Slide 2: Get to know your weaknesses so that you can work on improving them.

    Show Slide 3: Do not be afraid to ask for help from friends, family members or teachers.

    Show Slide 4: Avoid mixing with people who have had a bad influence upon you in the past.

    Show Slide 5: Aim to learn from your mistakes so that you can take advantage of the second chance that is on offer to you.

Time for reflection

How do we behave?
Let’s think carefully about the way in which we behave today.

How does our behaviour affect others?
Try to understand the effect that your actions might have on those around you as well as on yourself. Does your behaviour help others or hinder them?

Do we listen to advice?
Let’s aim to take advice respectfully when it is given and realize that, as a school community, we are aiming to prepare each person for a life of success.

Dear God,
Thank you for our school.
Thank you for those who care for us and advise us on our life’s journey.
Please help us to think about the effect that our actions have upon other people.
Help us to think of others before ourselves.

Publication date: October 2016   (Vol.18 No.10)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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