Collective Worship and Special Assemblies
Collective Worship and Special Assemblies: Let your light shine
An Easter Prayer written by our Owl Ministers
Thank you for giving us such precious gifts in life.
For our families who love and care for us.
For nutritional food that we are so lucky to have.
For so many different beautiful animals.
May peace dwell in fighting countries and may we keep people who are suffering in our thoughts.
And thank you for your son Jesus. He taught his disciples about you.
He healed people who were sick. He walked on water, and even died and came back to life. Help us to remember all the things he did and celebrate him every day.
Worship at Waltham
Collective worship involves all members of our school sharing time together in quiet moments of reflection to celebrate life and to show reverence to God. Everyone takes an active part in worship time; although parents do have a right to withdraw their child from participation should they choose to do so.
Every day, we schedule quiet moments for prayer; we have a special school prayer, as well as prayers for lunchtime and home time. We have daily worship led by teachers, children and special visitors; the leaders will invite everyone to join them in quiet moments of reflection too. Children are particularly keen to say spontaneous prayers to reflect the theme. We light a candle and dim the lights which help to create a spiritual ambience which parents and governors enjoy too. We sing hymns and reflect on our lives, to show our thankfulness towards God.
We use suggestions from the Diocesan Board of Education when planning worship themes, which we adapt for our children and the posters we create are displayed in all rooms to reinforce the key messages. We always have a Christian value that links our weekly worship, with clear aims and Biblical references to help children understand the language of worship. Worship is planned to mirror the aims and values for the week.
Open The Bible
Every week, when we are able to do so, a member of the Rector's team visits our school to lead an assembly called Open The Bible. They use the Bible as their inspiration and starting point and they always link to the themes of the week organised by staff and clergy together. Themes have included: 'A Special Promise,' 'Joseph the dreamer, prisoner and ruler' and 'The secret baby (Moses).'
We are very fortunate to work with an extended team of clergy from across our cluster. They visit school when they can, and during lockdown they have join us every week via zoom. This has enabled all children, staff and families to link in and enjoy stories, songs, music, video clips, Bible readings, prayer and aspects of the Eucharist to help celebrate the connection we have as a wider community. This has also included Open the Book.
Our Messy Fiestas always start with Collective Worship led by a member of our clergy team and are linked to the Christian Values such as Forgiveness, Love and Trust. The whole school mix up in to family groups and present different pieces of work to one another at the end of the Fiesta, parents and grandparents usually come to lend a hand and join in too. We use the wonderful open space in church for our Messy Fiesta's, which enable us to include aspects of the church to extend learning, e.g. the beautiful stained glass windows for story-telling. Our fiestas link with Messy Church and is very popular.
Time to learn Hymns (which are another form of worship) and discuss their meaning, is built in to our weekly schedule. Some of our favourites include 'This little light mine' and 'Peace like a river'.
A Free Prayer Book for Children
Older children plan, prepare and lead an act of worship each week. They enjoy making PowerPoints, choosing the Hymn and hold quizzes to support their evaluation. They are always keen to know what others think of their work! They encourage children of all ages to get involved with role play and have lots of fun dressing them up or encouraging them to make up dialogue. They write or say their own prayers and always have a story or reading from the Bible. These assemblies are very memorable and everyone looks forward to them.
Friday Special Assembly
Every Friday afternoon parents, families and friends are invited to attend our special assembly held in the Key Stage 2 rooms. We sing songs, say prayers together and celebrate the achievements of the children.
Merit Certificate - awarded to children working hard in lessons and producing good work.
Hand of Friendship Certificate - awarded to children (sometimes staff and parents too!) for doing something really special to help or showing an act of kindness without being prompted.
Endeavour Cup - a special trophy awarded to a child who has received both a merit and hand of Friendship certificate on the same day.
Class of the Week Trophy - the Head's decision is final! She's always on the look out for good manners, tidiness, hard work and positive attitudes.
Team Point Trophy - all children are in a team and collect points during the week. They are added up on Friday and the winners have their colours attached to the special trophy.
The Waltham Silver Globe - a highly sought after trophy, awarded in recognition of excellent performance in the arts.
Owl Minister's Special Trophy - each new Ministry choose a value that they would like to be acknowledged and celebrated, for example, children have been awarded the trophy for being 'Waltham School's most responsible citizen' and also for 'Friendship shown towards others at playtime' and 'kindness at lunchtimes.'
Special Events Awards - swimming certificates, sports certificates and medals are just some of the extras awarded to children throughout the year.
Prayer for the End of the School Year
At the end of this school year we give thanks to God:
For all the teaching and learning that has taken place in our school, both in and out of the classroom,
For the talents and gifts that have been shared and the challenges that have been faced during the last school year;
For the burdens that have been lifted and the hurts that have been healed;
For the respect and care that has been given.
We give thanks for the friendships that have been made and for those that have grown.
For the hope that has lifted our hearts on the dark days and for the love that has kept us going.
We give thanks for the community that we are, and we ask you Lord to Bless all of Year 6 as they move to their new schools in the autumn. Pour out your love on them and may your Spirit inspire them with confidence and calmness.
Bless our families too as we take holidays in the coming weeks and may our time together leave us with happy memories to cherish.
We make this prayer through Christ our Lord. Amen