School assemblies are a time of learning and participation in a group setting. Since school hours are not to be wasted, combining learning skills with entertainment for a variety of reasons and seasons is a good use of this time. Combining classes and grade levels share the use of monetary and supply resources. It is a good way to celebrate special events, teach positive character traits and give children an opportunity to share what they have learnt.
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Write scripts that focus on historical events such as Presidents Day, Thanksgiving or Christmas. English classes are enhanced with the opportunity to write scripts and perform them. Plays give many artistic avenues and learning opportunities for children. They encourage writing, performing, artwork for sets, costume design, marketing skills, organizational skills, management and computer-generated technical skills.
Research science ideas that are being taught at your grade level. Develop experiments that can be recreated and shared. Have the students ask questions about the topic being studied and then experiment with solutions. For example, when studying the environment and pollution, have the students brainstorm ways to recycle. Have them each develop a way to recycle or an item to recycle. Each student can present his finished idea to the class or to the school.
Younger students can participate in growing experiments. Each child can start seeds and learn what works in aiding their growth and what does not. Older students can recreate and explain the experiments that go along with the lessons in their text books. Each student can make the experiment, a poster and give an oral explanation of the experiment. Let the students or a panel of judges decides on the top five. Have an assembly that allows those students to talk about their projects.
Research the historical or famous people from your home state. Each state has its own famous political and celebrity-type people. Red Skelton, Jim Davis, David Letterman, Dan Quale and others are all from Indiana. Assign a different character to each child. Have the student write a script about the famous person and spend an assembly time pretending to be that person. Let them dress up to portray these figures. Invite families and other classes to the performance.
Allow the children to choose an occupation to research. They can learn what sort of education is needed to become a teacher, a physician or a lawyer and then discover what sort of responsibilities and payments they can expect. The students can create posters to explain the job. They can dress up and pretend to be this person for the assembly. Several students could write a script together and share with the class how different occupations depend on each other. For example a businessman may hire an accountant and a general manager to run a factory. Students can produce or explain the purpose of the occupation they choose.
Use an assembly to kickoff a school-wide community awareness project. Use the school's sports teams or music department to highlight a town cleanup day, or a drive to provide food for a pantry or homeless shelter. The high school student leaders are much admired by younger students and will get their attention. Allow good, local students to share encouragement and perseverance with younger elementary students. The Six Pillars of Character -- trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship -- are all good assembly topics. Have students share their own scripts and testimonies or invite a guest speaker to emphasise each character trait.
Invite local artists and experts to your assembly to share their talents. The public library and newspapers have a handle on local talent availability. Writers for your local newspaper are often storytellers as well. Libraries invite local talents to share their art, music or stories at the library. These same people would speak at your assembly about their given talent.
Local hospitals have assembly ideas already organised. Health fairs are educational and can be life-saving. Children learn and can participate in emergency procedures, health symptoms to look for, drug and alcohol abuse or good nutrition. Your local police force is also a good source of information; you can have assembly programs organised for various age levels. Police programs for children include being a good babysitter, avoiding strangers, latchkey tips and poison control.
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