School assemblies are a hugely important part of the school day, whether you deliver to a class, year group or whole school, it’s the best opportunity to motivate and inspire students and, perhaps most importantly, your team of staff
Have some music at the start of the assembly to set the theme. Don’t forget to listen to every word before hand, often lyrics aren’t quite as you remember them! Have this playing as students enter, so you can ensure that they arrive in an orderly fashion and those that are early are engaged and excited about what’s going to come next.
Get the students involved- whether it’s year group or whole school assemblies. Seek out a couple of outgoing students in advance and provide them with prompt cards or similar to read from during your assembly. Ideally, gather them them day before to have them practice reading the material and give them a few pointers. By using students to help lead the assembly, their peers will naturally become more engaged, plus the students that perform will grown in confidence. Remember to reward them too!
Remember that the assembly space is much bigger than a classroom so you will need to project your voice more than usual. Ask a colleague to stand at the back and give you a signal to speak up if need be.
Use a visual presentation to explain your message, this will help in many ways. Firstly, it will prompt you with what to say. You can even use the notes section on most slideshow presenters to add more detail. On that note, keep text on the slides minimal or everyone will be reading the screen rather than listening to what you’re saying! Use the time you are in front of your students to deliver a message that you feel is truly important. This is valuable time with them. View assembly duty as a great opportunity and get excited about it. Let your enthusiasm shine through too.
When it’s all over (phew!) don’t forget to dismiss the students in an orderly way. It can help to have music playing again, or perhaps a relative video clip, so that students that have to wait until last are still engaged.
Preparing for assemblies- weekly or daily can be a time consuming task, especially when a high standard of content and resources is required every time. That’s why more schools are opting to use prepared assemblies from external providers- to ensure that content is well thought out for the full year and covers a full range of topical content, in line with government guidance
Assembly delivery is the time for communicating. Fantastic assemblies use these valuable minutes to motivate and inspire not only students but also staff. Assemblies praise and reward, showing off how well individuals and groups are performing, high-lighting achievements (don’t forget the staff!). The whole room should be filled with a buzz. Don’t fall into the trap of using it as an excuse to go over sanctions for the minority of students who are not yet fully engaged in the school behaviour system. However, it is a great opportunity to celebrate school values. If there are issues with behaviour that need addressing, look for ways to address this in a positive way. High-light great examples of behaviour and make sure that at least 80% of the time is spent focusing on positive aspects.
Spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is highly important to education right now. Assemblies are a way of consolidating SMSC learning that is already taking place through additional curricula activities. It’s a great way to share good practice and allow students to lead their own learning and development. As well as promoting British values, assembly delivery is a fantastic opportunity to promote and link in the school values. Assembly time should also be used to promote events and activities that students are organising through the student council; a part of effective SMSC