Confidence School Assembly

Confidence School Assembly

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What is confidence?

Example answer: The feeling or belief that one can do something.

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Tuke worked at the Glas de Bon Bon, the largest sweet factory in the entire land. It’s reputation was enough to reduce even the most hardened healthy eater to a pile of dribbling saliva. A gigantic sherbet ice berg of a factory it floated on a lake of mouth watering jelly. Joining the baby blue iceberg to the mainland was a bridge of solid smooth chocolate. You can imagine the constant repair work that was needed on such a structure. Every visitor stopped for a bite out of the hand rail or for a lick of the luscious sherbet  windows. The factory however was self repairing and every night the chimneys would ooze molten chocolate which ran through channels and dribbled across the bridge, the milky chocolate set perfectly smooth under the cold, starry night sky. Tuke’s job was to patrol the run ways and thoroughfares to make sure that no unsuspecting chocolate lover wandered on to the setting floors and left unsightly (and quite frankly unhygienic) foot prints.

Like bees in a hive the worker’s, boiled, baked, melted and cooled, tested, tasted, mixed and stirred the most wondrous treats imaginable. Tuke loved to patrol the window fronts staring in at the delicious activity. Her favourite room was the design lab where the finest sweets were imagined. As usual Tig was already there, his furry face pressed against the glass. “Had to move anyone on this evening?” enquired Tuke as she approached. “No, all clear on my watch,” he replied slowly moving his face from the glass. “It’s amazing in there tonight, they are setting up for the sweet festival, ” he smiled. “Just look at that candy stick.” The gigantic multicoloured candy stick was encrusted with gummy drops and the centre was filled with exotic sherbet fizz. Tuke’s glowing red eye’s grew larger as she imagined devouring the monstrous treat.  “They’ve made the stick from soft, chewy candy” added Tig excitedly. The room was full of brightly coloured flags and bunting. Above the steaming sweet boiler Tuke studied the lavish framed poster. The culmination of the festival was the annual invention competition, every year the winning invention became the next big thing in the sweet world. “I’d love to enter,” said Tig longingly.

“Me too,” agreed Tuke. “I can’t cook though and my ideas are just silly. It would be so embarrassing having my disastrous attempts evaluated and tested on the tasting table.”

Why do you think that Tuke does not believe in her own skills?

Example answer: Bad past experiences, things that others’ have said.

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“ Come on Tuke lets give it a go,” encouraged Tig with a nudge. “

No way,” Tuke adamantly  replied, “I’m useless at that kind of stuff, I can’t compete with them .”

“Well at least give me a hand with my entry,” pleaded Tig. And so after only a little more persuading Tuke finally agreed to help out.

After a long shift the pair met at Tig’s house. The kitchen was simple but before them they had all of the ingredients necessary for creating the most wondrous sweets. Tig took a scientific approach, he filled vials and tubes with all manner of materials. Heating his creations he would taste test and make alterations. The pair happily chatted as they mixed and boiled away. Tuke was having such a great time. Carefully, using her miniature blow torch, she heated all manner of chewy, gummy substances.

Can you describe a sweet that you would create?

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As her mixture cooled, she rolled it into a chewy sweet base and sprinkled glistening, green apple mint crystals on top. Skilfully Tuke rolled up the sticky base to create a long tube with a refreshing apple mint spiral centre. When she cut her sweet roll into slices the spiraling candies looked impossibly mouth watering. She wasn’t able to admire her work for long before Tig’s scavenging hands found the treats. “These are wonderful,” mumbled Tig chomping away on the candies. The sweet pot gently bubbled away in the corner of the room. “Thanks but anyone could do it, I can only make the most basic of sweets,” Tuke humbly replied. Tig tutted,

“anyone my eye , I would never have thought of combining such flavours and textures, come on Tuke you have a talent for this.” Tuke could not be convinced, in her eye’s she felt no more than a novice of a sweet chef. “I’ll go get you a bag so that you can take your sweets home to share,” Tig kindly offered. “Don’t worry Tig,” replied Tuke swiftly gathering up her things “you keep the sweets, no one at home will eat them, they know I can’t cook.” Tig paused for a second, glanced down at the spiralled treats on the counter and shuffled off to see Tuke out. As soon as he had seen her off he dashed back in to the kitchen and emptied his candies out onto the counter, carefully he arranged Tuke’s spiralled chews in to the tub.

On the way home Tuke stopped off at the Glass de Bon Bon, the sherbet iceberg of a building was illuminated by a pale glowing light. From within, the beats of drums and toots of trumpets could be heard as the festival opening party raged. Babbler starring out into the darkness sauntered over to the window. He tapped his claws on the glass, “You’ve missed a foot print” came his muffled voice through the window pane. “I saw someone wandering over on the chocolate bridge just before you clocked off from your shift.  I would go and smooth the print out for you but us sweet inventors get frightfully busy at this time of year,”  he exclaimed with a sly smile. Babbler turned to grasp a dancing partner and joined the jigging parade that now snaked around the room. Feeling a little startled, Tuke shouted her apologies and dashed off to smooth out the prints. She worried over her mistake as she went. But of course there were no prints. Tuke always did the most thorough of jobs but sadly what she also did was doubt herself far too much.  Although she found  no prints there was indeed something wrong with the chocolate, something a little more unusual. There written amongst the perfectly smooth chocolate paving was a message, scribed in rather messy writing, it read “stick to what you’re good at and smooth this out.”Next to the writing someone had created a giant mound of mashed up chocolate,  strange claw marks were preserved in the mound. Tuke rushed to smooth out the mess. Glumly she made her way back towards home, the singing and drumming travelled on the wind and as she passed the Glass de Bon Bon once more her suspicions were confirmed. Gleefully Babbler continued to dance away to the music but Tuke did not admire the jolly jigging, she was preoccupied by Babbler’s claws... his chocolate stained claws. As if he had known that she was watching Babbler turned towards Tuke , smiled spitefully and spun off amongst the crowd. Tuke lowered her head and set off for home, as much as she wanted to tell the world about Babbler’s mean prank she just couldn’t bring herself to create a scene in front of all of the party goers.

What is the piece of punctuation called that the author uses in this sentence?

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Example answer: ellipsis. It is used here to create a pause in the narrative.

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Early the next morning Tig arrived on the doorstop  holding a large envelope. “What is it?” inquired Tuke wearily. Not saying a word he proudly handed her the brown crumpled envelope. Peering inside, Tuke recognised the papers. “Why are there two entry receipts?” she asked in a suspicious tone. Tig began to fight back a smile, “just because you couldn’t enter your sweets doesn’t mean that I wasn’t going to.”

“Oh Tig,” groaned Tuke, “why did you have to do that, I can’t stand the embarrassment,” she complained looking suddenly very glum. After her stressful evening this was the last thing she needed. “Don’t worry,” began Tig ,”there will be no embarrassment for you, I entered both sweets under my name,” he laughed! Tuke’s glum face perked up into a sympathetic grin. “This way you can see how the sweets do without any worry of embarrassment, now come on!” he beamed grabbing Tuke’s cold hand.  Tig was buzzing with excitement; he loved the rush of a competition.

When they arrived at the festival it was already busy. The delicious smell of sweets filled the hall. Baskets and trays of brightly coloured treats of all shapes and sizes covered every table.  Like kids in a candy shop the festival goers darted from tasting table to tasting table. The factory speakers boomed out descriptions of the most fantastical sweets... “and on table 6 we have the gummy golf balls, wondrous little spheres of fruity jelly covered in a crunchy gobstopper shell and finished with fine powdered popping sugar. Tantalise your tongue and taste one now.” The announcement tempted.

What do you think will happen?

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The festival goers chomped and munched,  chewed and crunched and selected and sampled their way through the sweets like a swarm of ants on a picnic. Tig pushed his way through the crowd towards the main stand. On top of the table sat a 6 tiered brass stand and on top of the stand lay Tuke’s mouth watering treats. Tuke couldn’t believe her ears, the bustling crowd around the table professed and praised the complex refreshing flavour of Tuke’s strange chewy delight. She felt full of pride. A large glistening 4th place rosette adorned the front of the table. Tig’s smile was broader than ever, to be in the top 10 was an amazing achievement. From out of the crowd a clawed hand tapped Tig on the shoulder, “wow your sweets are good congratulated Babbler slapping his chops on Tuke’s chewy spiralled treats, truly special my friend,” he praised.

Confidence is a strange thing, it can come and go, it can often build through small things and with every little success it leaves you a little more confident. Unfortunately for Babbler, at that very moment Tuke had just taken such a step forward with her confidence. She grasped Babbler’s resting clawed hand and met his gaze. In a calm voice she began,” the sweets that you are so enjoying were made by me and it seems that you find them rather delicious, such a shame really seeing as you think that I should stick to smoothing out your silly chocolate pranks.” She glanced over at the 20th place rosette on Babbler’s competition offering and pointed, “if I was you I would spend less time pranking and a little more time on your recipes.” Purposefully, she dipped her finger in the runny chocolate fountain that cascaded off the corner of the table, she paused for a second and then  gently blobbed  a large dollop of the chocolate on Babbler’s nose. Without a further word she put her arm around Tig’s shoulders and turned off into the crowd. As she confidently walked away, a cheer went up from around her table, Tuke smiled, her confidence took a further little step forward and as for Babbler... a big lump of chocolate dripped from his nose and his cheeks turned more than a little crimson.

Why is confidence important?

Example answer: So that good ideas are heard by others, for your well being,  so that you can take opportunities that arise, so that you can trust your decisions, so that you continue to try new things, so that you can improve, so that you are able stand up for what you believe.

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New Year’s Resolution School Assembly

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New Year's Resolution School Assembly

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Iska found going back to school after the holidays rather flat. I mean how could anything compare with the two weeks of excitement,  games and gifts that he had just enjoyed? It was strange as despite this Iska really looked forward to his Dance lessons and what’s more he didn’t even enjoy dancing that much.

 

What are you looking forward to at school this year?

Example answers: Playing with friends, English lessons, PE, Art, DT project, school trips, school plays, School Assemblease assemblies 😉

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Iska’s Dance Teacher was not what you’d expect of a dancer. You certainly couldn’t imagine him swinging and swaying along on any stage or television show. Although Mr Wiggle didn’t look the part, the truth was that he was an excellent Teacher. He had large sympathetic, twinkling eyes and a kind, deep voice that vibrated through the school. His hunched figure shuffled into the dance studio and his pale wrinkly prune of a face beamed at the children. When that electro music came on, his body came alive, he danced like you have never seen before.

 

The rumours around school were that, when he was younger, Mr Wiggle had been a famous backing dancer and toured the planet entertaining delighted crowds.

 

How do you think that Mr Wiggle ended up at the school?

Example answers: Got sacked, fame became too much for him, he  preferred teaching, he liked helping children.

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The lead dancer had become jealous of Mr Wiggle’s extraordinary skills and through fear of losing the lead role in the group, he persuaded the other dancers to replace poor Mr Wiggle. Like with many rumours it was difficult to know what to actually believe, but what was very clear was that this strange little man could really dance.

 

What made Iska look forward to Mr Wiggle’s lessons however was not the opportunity to witness amazing dance skills but something very different. Like a mysterious kung fu master Mr Wiggle would always have a thoughtful solution to any problem, his attitude towards life was quite remarkable. Now this strange little man was always surprising the class with stories of exciting activities that he had tried: space buggy racing, sky scraper parachuting, mountain climbing, he had done it all. Mr Wiggle put it all down to his secret and now returning back to school from the holidays, he was prepared to share it with the class…

 

What do you think Mr Wiggle’s secret tip will be?

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Every year Mr Wiggle would draw a strange graph, a graph of himself. On the y axis going up the graph he listed activities, all things that he wanted to get better at, or new things to try out during the year. On the x axis, going across the graph, were the months of the year. Every year by any amount at all he aimed to try to make the line of his graph go upwards. Mr Wiggle had been doing this his entire life and every New Year he would sit down and look at his graph and evaluate what new activities he had tried and what he had improved at. Mr Wiggle would then ensure that he did what was needed to make his graph go upwards during the next year. And so through this simple graph this rather modest looking man had tried the most extraordinary things.

 

What would you like to get better at this year?

Example answers: Dancing, singing, football, swimming, spelling, Maths, multiplication, being kinder to friends etc.

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 Mr Wiggle’s second tip was quite similar to the first but equally impressive. He insisted that to keep things interesting, it was very important to keep trying new things. And so at the beginning of each year he would also write down a list of 5 new things to try during that year. It could be anything: trying a new food, taking up a new sport, reading a particular book, visiting somewhere new, joining a team. The list could go on and on.

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What new things would you like to try this year?

Example answer: Learn to play an instrument, learn to ride a bike, cooking a new meal, trying a new food, visiting a new place.

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Mr Wiggle’s third and final tip was the most simple and also the most important. “Do it!” he shouted. “Whatever you have written on your list, make sure that you do it!”

 

Why do you think that tip three is the most important?

Example answer: It is easier to say that you are going to do something and actually making sure that you achieve your goals (targets) is where the real effort is needed.

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Now, one question remains...

 

What will you do with your New Year? Happy New Year!

 

In this quote from the story what interesting verbs does the writer use?

“You certainly couldn’t imagine him swinging and swaying along on any stage or television show.”

Answer: Swinging and swaying (or imagine).

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Resilience School Assembly

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Resilience School Assembly

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Many moons ago when I was far younger than I am now I lived in the land of Pau. Although on the surface a life amongst the soft blue hills and sparkling magical mists of this land might seem like a blessed life, it was in fact a very tough place to grow up. And what made matters worse was the sad truth that I was not the most resilient of creatures. You would think that as a young inventor I would’ve oozed grit and determination and believe me I wish I had. My cavern home was littered with half finished, failed contraptions. Rusty cogs, greasy engines, flashing circuit boards and monitors were crammed into every corner of my gloomy rocky room

Early one morning I woke up as the sun rose over the blue hills filling my room with a cold, pale light. The light twinkled onto the make shift glass mirrors that I had roughly strung up around the room. The mirrors were positioned at such an angle that the reflected light danced over my face and disturbed my sleep. This mirror alarm clock was one of my more successful inventions, at least on a sunny day anyway.  Jumping out of bed, I quickly gathered my things and tumbled out of the door for school. My journey was a long one. Every morning I made my way through the rolling hills. At the usual meeting point by the crystal boulders, I would find Rakiura waiting. Rakiura was my best friend in the whole of the world and this is the story of how he taught a budding inventor like me the importance of a little resilience.

What is resilience?

Example Answer: The capacity to recover quickly from difficulties

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Rakiura and I were always up to mischief and today we planned to get to school quick smart so that we could do a little early morning tinkering in the technology workshop before the Teachers arrived at school. We reached the workshop utterly exhausted from our commute. Lifting up the lab shutters Rakiura lead the way. “shhh quietly,” he warned  as I stumbled over a tool box. “Coast clear,” he declared tapping the light initiation button. Five rotating, hovering light spheres rose into the air and illuminated the room. They hung above our heads like miniature glowing satellites. Our eye’s adjusted to the intense light. We felt like undercover spies on a secret mission, every creak and clank sent us ducking for cover.

Our latest project was a converted buggy that we hoped to modify and use to drive to school. Using the workshop out of school hours was strictly prohibited and so any time to work on our machine was precious indeed. Without wasting a moment I released the wheel bolts and began to fit a salvaged quad bike tyre. “Do you think that these wheels will cope with the boulders on the hill side?” I asked Rakiura.

“There’s only one way to find out,” he replied.” If we can sneak in a couple more sessions over the next few weeks we might get the buggy in a state that we can test it before the snow arrives.” “Shhhh,” I whispered, breaking off from the conversation. My heart began to race as I ducked down behind the rubbery quad tyre. A familiar clip clop of shoes echoed across the courtyard.

“They’ve gone and left the lights on again,” came a screeching voice from near the workshop door. Underneath the units I could see two tiny feet pacing around. There was only one Teacher with such trotter like feet, Mr Mutton. Unfortunately for us Mr Mutton was the most strict of all of the Teachers. He had a stare that could freeze you to the spot and send your insides to jelly. I felt sick just thinking about him catching us. His beady lizard like eyes scanned the room and his tongue flicked in and out as if he could taste the air. He trotted forward and paused. Rakiura saw his chance and commando crawled towards the exit, I followed snaking across the floor as fast as I could. I clutched the light controller pad tightly as I went. Mr Mutton started to turn his bubble shaped head towards our location. There was only one choice. I tapped the control screen and plunged the room in to darkness. Mr Mutton screeched, “stop right there, I know you’re in here.” The room filled with clanks and crashes as we fumbled in the darkness for the exits and then came the bassy hiss as the lights were powered up and the spheres rose into the air. There illuminated for all of the world to see were Rakiura and I, frozen still just centimetres from the exit. “The games up,” squawked Mr Mutton, swiftly trotting over to us. “Don’t you move a muscle.”

I wished that the floor would swallow me up. I lay still daring not to move. “Up you get then,” ordered Mr Mutton abruptly. We stumbled to our feet and stood in front of the wiry frame of Mr Mutton, our heads towards the ground daring not to meet his angry stare. “So what brings you in to school before opening hours?” he inquired. We hurriedly babbled out the story of our buggy project. Mr Mutton looked remarkably unimpressed. “Well  I would enjoy the pleasure of thinking  up a particularly nasty consequence for your actions,” began Mr Mutton. “You know this is a serious breach of school rules, he squawked.” A thin smile spread across his round face. “However there is no need for my creative thinking this early in the morning,” he continued. “You see the DT workshop is set to close. There has not been one successful invention or project created since we had it fitted out. I have permission from the head teacher to close the workshop at the end of the month as long as nothing notable is created in the mean time. I will take great pleasure in reinvesting the money on the drama studio,” he smiled evilly. Our heart’s sank, this news was far worse than any petty consequence conjured up by the miserable Mutton. Mr Mutton adjusted his sleeves and glanced at his watch. “Only ten minutes before lessons begin, you best be on your way.”

How do you think the pair of friends will react?

Example Answer:Start working on a new invention, work harder, give up.

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Slowly we dragged ourselves across the courtyard. “Well that’s it,” I announced to Rakiura, “that’s the end of our buggy project.”

Rakiura glared at me. His bad mood was evident across his face. “Why must you give up so easily,” he began. I snapped back at him, “Oh come on Raki every invention we have ever started we have either lost interest in or it has failed. We have one month and then it’s game over for that workshop and our plans. We might as well just give up now.” Rakiura curled up his lips,

“Well I won’t give up,” he shouted storming off down the corridor.

I couldn’t focus on my work that day, falling out with my best friend was stuck on my mind and what was the point anyway, I always gave up with my work and why should today be any different. The day couldn’t end quick enough.

When it was time to go home I didn’t bother going to the meeting place to find Rakiura, I plodded across the courtyard into the gloomy evening. I noticed that the workshop lights were on and there in the window was Rakiura working away on the buggy. Shaking my head I turned for home.

What would you do?

Example Answer: Go and help my friend, find a away to help, I wouldn't give up.

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The next morning I awoke to the dancing pale light on my face. I felt little better. Slowly I trudged my way to school. Unsurprisingly, when I arrived at the crystal boulders Rakiura was not there.  The journey felt even longer than usual. I trudged on worrying about the closure of the workshop and about my upset friend Rakiura. Arriving at school I tried not to look at that miserable workshop but like a moth to a lamp my eye’s couldn’t resist a quick glance. Walking towards the shutters I noticed that they were slightly ajar. Peering inside I could see him, Rakiura was busying himself hammering and measuring, it was as if he had never left the workshop.

Over the next few days, every time I passed the workshop it was the same scene, Rakiura dashing around clanking and banging. He didn’t look up once.  Some days he was sat head in hands looking utterly defeated but just as I thought he would give up, he would hop to his feet and continue his work. He poured over papers of calculations to guide his tinkering, even after a long day at school he would return to his project. Sitting at home I would wonder about Rakiura, in fact whenever I stopped still, wherever I was, I felt wrapped with guilt. Rakiura would not give up on his project and yet I gave up on everything  so easily.

How could Kakapo show more resilience in this situation?

Example Answer: He could try to complete his invention in time for the deadline.

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It was still dark when I awoke the next morning, torch in hand I set off on my long hike. The rain was hammering down, a few more hours in my warm bed had never felt more inviting. I pushed on through the rain and eventually arrived at school. It was deserted and dark. Long shadows loomed across the court yard as the security light flashed on and off. School was a creepy place out of hours. The workshop window was ajar and I squeezed myself through. I powered up the light spheres and felt slightly comforted by the humming as they hovered above me. In the corner of the workshop, under a metallic grey cover, was the buggy. Without even removing the sheet I could see that the buggy was now much larger. When I inspected underneath the sheet I had not expected it to look quite so different. The chassis was now covered with metal plating and a jet black roll cage projected over the top of the drivers cock pit. Rakiura had done a wonderful job. Beneath the shimmering body work, I could now see what had been causing Rakiura’s sullen, sunken moments that I had observed over the last few days. It was the wheels, the quad bike tyres were just too large to fit underneath the chassis. In the corner of the room Rakiura’s dilemma became clearer, giant go cart wheels, plastic toy wheels, thick rubbery tyres all either too large or way too small for the vehicle. All of that hard work and yet no way of moving the buggy. This was my opportunity. Rakiura had not given up and this time neither would I.

What do you think Kakapo will do?

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I began to fire up the circular saw and carefully I started to cut a medium sized wheel shape from the left over metal. Steadily I filed the wheel to make a perfect circle. They  fit perfectly on to the vehicle. I lowered the jack so that the buggy could finally rest on the floor. For a brief moment it sat there beautifully, just as planned, then there was a creak and a crack the wheels began to buckle under the weight of the buggy and with a crash it collapsed to the floor. I slumped on my elbows at the desk top, all of that work ruined.

Have you ever felt like this?

If so when?

Example Answer: When a piece of art work has gone wrong, when you receive a disappointing test score, when you keep making spelling mistakes, when you have lots of corrections on a piece of work, when you miss a goal in a PE game.

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As I sat there, I stared out of the window into the dark, I caught a glimpse of my reflection in the glass. The scene was a familiar one, except when I saw it last it had been Rakiura slumped figure sitting at the desk and he had not given in, he had got back up and worked to solve his problem. Lifting my head a little higher I noticed how bright the hovering workshop lights were reflecting in the glass. The spherical light bulbs hovered above my head, they were literally my eureka moment. The idea was brilliant!

What do you think his brilliant idea will be?

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I dashed to the storage cupboard and frantically fumbled through all of the boxes and packaging. There in the bottom corner, I found what I was looking for. Carefully I carried the heavy box back to the workshop table. I brushed the shattered buggy wheels to the side and began to use the electric jack to lift the buggy chassis. The body work itself was a little scratched but other than that it had survived the fall remarkably well. I returned to the box on the work top and tore open the packaging. From the box I lifted the huge, spherical work shop lights. One by one I lined up the lights under the wheel arches of the buggy until all four of them sat perfectly positioned. On the work surface next to me was the controller. I tried to remain calm as I sat quietly reprogramming the electronics. I bit down on my lip and pressed the activate button. A deep whirring filled the air, the lights burst on chasing away the darkness from every corner of the room. The hum rose in pitch as the spheres began to shake and slowly they lifted the buggy into the air. Unbelievably the vehicle sat there floating before me, perfectly suspended head and shoulders above the workshop floor. My body filled with excitement. Our vehicle could hover!

I worked quickly to link the steering to my new hover system;  I knew Rakiura would arrive soon to begin his morning’s work. Dashing to the corner of the workshop I crawled beneath an old dust sheet, I powered down the lights and waited. Before long the familiar tip tap of Rakiura’s weary footsteps echoed across the court yard , the lights powered up again and there was a thud as he rested his backpack on the workshop table. I peered out from beneath the sheet as Rakiura rushed around setting out his tools. As he approached the covered vehicle I pushed the activate button to start the new hover system. The sheet rose into the air. Rakiura gasped and I burst out from  the corner of the room to meet his beaming face. “Unbelievable!” he choked, “did you do this?” I smiled back at him. “ I certainly did.”

“This will handle the hilly terrain alright,” he chuckled. “Wow!” He help out his palm and shook my hand. I could see what this meant to him.

And so a little resilience had paid off. Of course once Mr Mutton saw our creation, there was no way he could close the workshop. The greatest invention our school had ever seen and all it took was a little inspiration from a friend and most importantly a good dose of grit and determination!

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The Rule of Law School Assembly (A British Values Assembly)

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The Rule of Law School Assembly (A British Values School Assembly)

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Wrapped up in their parkers the inhabitants of Shnoll trudge across the vast ice flats to work. Their land is a land of cold and ice. The snow glistens against the pure blue sky.  Tui and her friends slowly make their way between the icy green lakes that divide the frozen land. As they walk they chime bells and not only bells but cymbals and spoons, the cheerful tunes warm their souls. At the foot of the mountains, sit the factories, two huge rotating mirrored spheres that harness the power of the sun. And within the metallic domes, occurs the most important work on Shnoll.

Tui glanced up at the mirrored roof and tapped the control screen. Like a Mexican wave of one thousand unfolding butterfly wings, the mirrored roof panels flicked open one by one. Almost instantly the dome began to warm.  Tui lifted her face and closed her eye’s as the heat bathed her skin. After a short pause she began her work harvesting the produce that thrived within the huge dome. Gigantic juicy berries hung from the growing frames, brilliant purple pumpkins burst from the earth beneath.  The sound of juicers and presses hummed on the balconies above and the sweet smell of syrups, jams and drinks drifted on the air. The dome was a wonderful place to work.

Why do you think that the domes are so important to the inhabitants of Shnoll?

Example answers: They’re warm, they’re safe, they have lots of food there, they provide shelter.

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Tui’s favourite job was tending to the live stock. She had a particular soft spot for the moas, huge gentle chicken like creatures as large as a horse. Tui blew her bird whistle, the corn crop in the distance began to move from side to side as if a sudden wind had entered the dome. The wave moved forward through the cotton plantation and then the familiar squawks and screeches of the moa came. As the wave rushed forward they emerged from the foliage. Obedient as ever the moas gathered around Tui, their brightly patterned nervous heads twitched from side to side, they clucked inquisitively and their gigantic claws scratched at the ground. With a tuneful blow on the whistle, the moas began to follow Tui to the feeding troughs. Everything in the dome worked on a smooth schedule. While Tui fed the giant moa, Sponyo would scour the crop fields for their nests and harvest the huge speckled  moa eggs. One egg was so gigantic that it could feed a whole family for a week.

And so you can see why the domes were so important for Shnoll. Away from the harsh wintery conditions all of the food for the entire land was produced. The domes were so essential that they were protected by strict law. The rule of the law stated that everyone must pay tax to help with the upkeep of the dome; that nobody must vandalise the dome; that stealing food from the dome was strictly prohibited; and that all of the livestock should be treated humanely. And so in this way the inhabitants of Shnoll could ensure that the dome produced enough food for the entire land.

What are some of the laws in your country?

No stealing, no vandalism, obey speed limits, treat animals humanely.

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Tui poured the last of the seed into the rusty metal trough, she worked her way around the group of moas gently stroking their thick brown feathers. The moas huddled close to her. Sponyo’s cheerful voice echoed across the dome, “And how are our lovely moa’s today?” he called.

“They’re looking great,” replied Tui, “This new feed has really helped to bring out the sheen on their tail feathers,” she added as she lovingly stroked the long vibrant blue tail feathers. Sponyo smiled. “The snow hogs were looking good this morning as well. I’m going to extend their pen a little more over the next few weeks, it seems to make all of the difference.” A loud smashing noise interrupted their conversation. The moas scattered and Tui scanned the mirrored roof for cracked glass. “It’s not the roof,” muttered Sponyo calmly putting down his bulging wheel barrow of eggs.  Another distant crash rang out. Tui pulled out her head phones and looked around in puzzlement. “This has been going on all morning,” continued Sponyo . “I’m surprised that you haven’t noticed.”

What do you think is causing the crashing noise?

Example answers: Ice melting, glass breaking, rocks falling, a yeti, a manic moa,  a riot outside of the dome.

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“What is it?”asked Tui worriedly. “It’s them outside, those from the deep mountains,” he began. “We might have the rule of the law in here but there, there are no rules, no laws. As the winters became harsher this was always likely to happen. Your parents must have mentioned the problems to you.” Tui remembered the stories of the strange creatures that dwelled deep within the far mountains but she didn’t ever imagine that the creatures would leave their homes and journey to the plains. With no laws out there chaos was always likely,” continued Sponyo.  “Look on the bright side, we are lucky here, we have the rule of the law. We can continue to work together to make sure that there is enough food to go around. It’s safe here.”  Tui nodded but she could not get the thought out of her head. With every crash and call from the outside she envisioned all that they had worked so hard for lost to the chaos and cold. She grasped the smooth bird whistle in her pocket and gently pressing it against her lips she blew. A high pitched tune echoed around the dome. With a squawk and a thump the moas returned from the fields.  “I’m going out there,” declared Tui. “I’m going to tell them about the dome and our laws, I will show them how life can be.” From the tangled vines Tui began to Platte a rope, she twisted the fibres tightly together. Gently stroking the moas back she ran her fingers through its thick feathers. The gigantic bird lowered its neck, Tui hopped her leg up onto its stumpy wing and with a heave and a push she launched herself on to the back of the bird. Draping her newly fashioned ropes around the gentle beast’s neck she made a crude set of reins to guide the moa. Tui whispered kindly and clenched the reins tight. The moa lifted its head and jerked forward. It’s long scaly legs moved swiftly as they charged towards the dome exit.  Sponyo called out after her but it was too late.

What do you think the mountain creatures will look like?

Example answers: scary, strange, ogres, goblins, yetis, snowmen.

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The blizzard on the outside was thick. Calls and crashes travelled on the wind. The moa fluffed up its thick feathers and glanced around in the white. Slowly through the snow the figures appeared. As they loomed nearer Tui’s heart began to race, she remembered childhood stories of the strange mountain creatures. The arguing was intense but as they came in to sight the creatures looked no different to herself. “You stole my pumpkin,” shouted an angry figure.

“Nice food is not just for the rich,” yelled a small beast  as it dashed past arms full of red berries. In hot pursuit came a third furious figure yelling and bleating, “thief, thief, thief!” She shook her fists in fury.  Pulling hard on the moa’s reins Tui charged towards the group. A spray of snow filled the air and she skidded to a halt. Slowly the moa inquisitively clucked and plodded circling the furious figures. They stared on in disbelief. Imagine how you would feel if you were approached by a mysterious rider aback a gigantic chicken like creature and you will have an idea of the shocked faces that stared up at Tui. The thief wobbled, dropped a few berries and continued to run. Again Tui slapped down on the reins and the moa sprang into the air, its dumpy wings flapped and fluttered. With a thud the moa landed in front of the thief and he slid to the floor with a terrified look on his face. Rearing into the air the moa screeched, the thief’s eyes grew wide. “Why are you stealing?” boomed Tui.

The figure stumbled to its feet, “There is not enough food to go around,” he stuttered meekly.

Do Sponyo, Tui and the other dome workers argue like this? No

Why?

Example answers: They have laws to protect them, they are happy, they have enough food, they work together.

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“You!” shouted Tui pointing at another figure, “why are you taking more than your share?” Nervously the figure replied, “there are no laws here, I can take as much as I like.” Tui climbed down on to the crisp white ground. “And look where it has gotten you,” she muttered raising her head. She pulled her flashing communication screen from her parker and tapped the unlock symbol to display the dome’s cameras. “Look”, she whispered kindly. The figures gathered around the glowing screen, the blizzard howled around them. They looked at each other as the cameras revealed the calm, lush environment inside the dome. Happy, organised workers peacefully went about their daily tasks. “In there, there are laws,” declared Tui in a serious voice. “They protect us all so that life is fair, so that there is no stealing, so that all of us are safe.” Surrounded by the bleak cold, the huddled figures remained silent. Tui paused, scanning their thoughtful faces, she could see hope. “If I offered you now a future like the one you see here, in the dome, what would you say?” It was an easy question to answer, a future where they felt safe, and where they all had enough food and shelter certainly seemed like something worth striving for. The three figures nodded in agreement. “So it is decided then,” said Tui confidently, “you will go and spread the word and introduce your laws to the land.” The group filled with excitement. Their faces glowed in wonder as they continued to watch the hive of activity captured on the display screen. “I didn’t want to argue in the first place,” said the tiny figure thoughtfully. He offered a fist full of berries to his victim. Grasping his hand softly she accepted the berries and smiled. And so the three snowy figures set off back to the mountains to pass on their message, this time they did not argue, instead debating and discussing they disappeared in to the distance. Tui pulled herself up on to the moa, let out a deep sigh of relief and still smiling buried her cheeks in to the bird’s downy feathers. The moa cooed peacefully. Wearily the pair of intrepid adventurers turned towards the feint shape of the dome.  Riding through the glistening landscape, Tui felt warmed inside knowing that she had planted the seed of peace and calm. Soon happiness would return to the cold snowy plains of Shnoll.

Why are laws important?

Example answers: They protect the public, they make sure that everyone is treated fairly, they help to make a place safe.

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Tolerance of Those of Different Faiths and Beliefs School Assembly (A British Values School Assembly)

 

Tolerance of Those of Different Faiths and Beliefs School Assembly (A British Values School Assembly)

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How many different faiths can you name?

Example answers: Buddhism, Sikhism, Islam, Hinduism, Christianity

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Do all faiths have the same beliefs?

Answer: No

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Within the Hoodoo Forest grew the most gigantic, towering trees. It would take one hundred children stood hand in hand to be able to give these prehistoric trunks a hug. And the trees were even taller than they were wide. The spongy, brown bark supported layer after layer of sprouting lush branches. Each branch of the tree was home to a different type of marvellous mysterious insect. It was a paradise for any budding biologist.

Kelowna buzzed amongst the bark, her large eyes darted from side to side, she always seemed to be moving in one way or another. Her hairy pink feet gripped the mossy trunk as she explored the drooping lichens that sprouted from the branches like the wispy beard of an old wizards chin. At lunch time, the whole branch of creatures came together to eat. The squeaking noise was the signal, a sound much like a high pitched squeak of a dog’s toy. The air filled with the enquiring squeaking of insect after insect. As the message spread, more and more insects gathered at the point where the branch and trunk joined. Eagerly, Kelowna approached the meeting place in anticipation of her lunch. Her stomach rumbled and she imagined the wondrous feast that awaited. But Kelowna would have to wait a little longer than she expected for this meal...

Why do you think that Kelowna’s dinner will be delayed?

Example answers: It got burnt, the branch snaps, it is too crowded.

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Floating in the wind, she spotted the golden feather, she could not believe her eyes. Why was it not safe in its place deep within the tree trunk? Kelowna buzzed forward to grab the glistening feather. As she reached a gust of wind caught the feather and it wafted off into a turbulent spin. Kelowna let out a loud squeak and alerted the attention of the other branch dwellers. Beeping and squeaking, buzzing and chirping, and clicking and singing the insects erupted into argument. Why was the feather not guarded? How could they have been so careless? The golden feather was the most prized object in the whole of Kelowna’s world. Her people believed that it came from the golden nutcracker, the bird that had planted the seed that their tree, and indeed their whole world, had grown from.

“Someone must retrieve it immediately,” clicked Kelowna’s mother, Okanga. Needing no encouragement Kelowna buzzed into the air. “I will go,” she declared. “There is no time for arguing, I saw the feather drift up there,” she pointed at the branch high above their heads. “If I go now, I can stop it before it blows further away.” And so without further deliberation Kelowna found herself buzzing through the vibrant leaves up to the branch above.

This was a big deal, branch dwellers just didn’t explore outside of their own safe, familiar leafy branch. Kelowna had not stopped to think about what she might find. What she did find was more different than she had ever expected. The leaves on the branch above were orange, a firey orange not like the bright green foliage of her home land. Standing amongst the flickering leaves was a gigantic, slender insect with three beady eyes. Although there were three eyes, they were not so different from her own. She saw them and they saw her! Waving in the creatures many claws was the glistening, golden feather. There were many more three eyed insects gathered around the creature. “ The golden dove has gifted us with another of its feathers” decreed the strange insect. “The dove that gives us the sun, that makes our mighty tree grow,” he continued.

Kelowna furiously buzzed from side to side, the feather was from the golden nut cracker, it wasn’t from a dove! What was this insect chirping on about. She just couldn’t help herself, she really cared about the feather and before she knew what she was doing Kelowna was shouting at the top of her voice. “It’s a nutcracker feather you buffoon, it didn’t come from a golden dove!” The branch fell silent, and then she noticed the eyes! Hundreds of angry red eyes all staring at her. “How dare you,” shouted a voice from amongst the crowd. Here, here agreed a hundred furious voices. Kelowna’s antennae’s began to flash red with embarrassment, she felt slightly sick and noticed that her wings were beginning to shake.

Why do all of the three eyed creatures feel angry?

Example answer: Kelowna is not being tolerant of their beliefs.

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The fiery leaves around began to rustle, there was a mighty gust and the feather whirled into the air. Following the feather, Kelowna darted into the sky and up high amongst the magenta leaves. The grumbling and ranting below began to fade and Kelowna emerged through the thick sea of leaves. She popped out on the beautiful pale bark of the branch above. The branch was smooth and gnarled like that of a piece of drift wood washed up on a lonely beach. Panting for her breath, she caught a glimpse of the golden feather disappearing between the layers of the smooth bark. Kelowna fearlessly followed the feather. Carefully, she pulled open the layers of the bark and squeezed inside. She bounced onto the cushion like surface below and there sticking out of the strangest sucker that you can imagine was the golden feather. At the end of the sucker was an even stranger creature. Imagine a snail with a sucker for a nose and a sequin for a shell and you will have small idea of the sight that met Kelowna’s eyes. Letting out a muffled squawk the creature’s sucker began to trumpet. The bark squelched as the suckers of creature after creature emerged from the branch. “The lightning bird feather has returned, the bird that brought the lightning strike that struck our branch giving us the crevasse that we now call home,” squawked a suckered face. Kelowna knew it was a bad idea but she just couldn’t help herself “It’s a nutcracker feather, and it’s ours, you are wrong” she bellowed. The bark began to rumble with the complaints of furious shelled creatures. “It is the lightning bird’s feather,” argued a voice from within the bark.

What could Kelowna do differently?

Example answer: She could respect the beliefs of others and not tell them that their beliefs are wrong.

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The crevasse became hot and noisy as the creatures ranted and shouted, and Kelowna felt awful. Disturbed by the heat the feather began to wave. A gust of air caught the feather and it wisped out of the bark crevasse and into the open air beyond the branch. Kelowna darted for the gap in the bark and with a squeeze and a pop she found herself tumbling after the feather. The branch shook with angry voices.

 

High above the golden feather floated. Kelowna stretched forth reaching for the feather but it gusted up through the tar black foliage. The leaves above dripped like a poisonous oil spill. It was dark up there, very dark. The air smelt heavy like petrol. In the darkness the golden feather glistened. Tiny light after tiny began to glow. A hundred flickering noses emerged from the darkness. The glowing noses of the koodoo bug. Amongst the flickering noses the feather finally settled. “It is the feather of the glow eagle,” came a voice from the shadows. “The eagle that first brought us high up to our home on this branch.” Of course Kelowna did not agree with this. She took a breath and paused. She had seen that everyone she had met had their own strong beliefs about the feather. Not respecting the beliefs of the other creatures had worked out horribly on the other branches and further more she felt terrible about it all. Kelowna decided that everyone had the right to their own beliefs. She did not have to change her own beliefs about the feather, but she did need to be more tolerant about the beliefs and views of others.

Should Kelowna have to keep her own beliefs quiet?

Example answer: No, everyone has a right to their beliefs and to be treated respectfully. The beliefs of others should be respected.

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And so politely and gently Kelowna began to explain to the Koodoo bugs about her journey to retrieve the feather. Kelowna continued to tell the bugs of the importance of the feather to the creatures of her branch. The koodoo bugs did not agree with Kelowna’s story about the origins of the feather and so their following actions came as a great surprise to her. Despite their differing beliefs the bugs stopped and listened. They made it clear that they did not agree but they could see what the feather meant to Kelowna. And that is how Kelowna found herself tightly clutching the golden feather, buzzing proudly back towards her branch.

All of the creatures of the tree had their own beliefs about the feather and Kelowna had learned to be more tolerant and respectful of the beliefs of others.

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Democracy School Assembly (A British Values School Assembly)

Democracy School Assembly (A British Values School Assembly)

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Can you think of a situation where you have voted for something?

Example answers: school council, choosing which game to play at playtime, deciding on teams, sharing tasks, making choices over classroom activities.

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How would you feel if only one person was always allowed to make the choice and your opinion was never considered?

Example answers: frustrated, unfair , powerless, confused, controlled.

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Mr Kakariki entered the room, and the class fell quiet. The children loaded up their paper thin, learning screens ready for the lesson to begin.  You couldn’t always guarantee that Mr Kakariki would actually use the computer screens,  he liked to surprise! He was the kind of teacher that you remembered, his eyes twinkled with interest and he always listened. But today it was as if Mr Kakariki had lost his mind. “Morning,” he greeted the children in his usual calm, friendly manner. He continued in the same tone, “over to you Kakaw”,  pointing at a particularly energetic child at the front of the class. “I’m not leading today, I’m taking the day easy,” laughed Mr Kakariki. With that, unbelievably, Mr Kakariki sashayed to the back of the room, pulled out a sleeping pod and put his legs up. All six of his legs!

At first Kakaw was shocked, he stood at the front of the class staring in disbelief. It wasn’t long before Kakaw began to see that this could be a brilliant turn of events. His rules, his way! A broad smile swept across his face.  He lent forward and declared, “rules for the day:  You can use screens as much as you like, but only for playing games!” Rule 2:  everyone must join in with my games to make them as fun as possible. First game, laser tag! Without more encouragement the children ran for their laser taggers and attached their light weight laser receiver vests. “You can go anywhere in the school, the only thing that you cannot do is reset your laser receivers,”  added Kakaw. The sensitive, laser receiver vests kept count of how many times a player was tagged and Kakaw’s fantastic plan was to have a whole day laser tag competition to declare the true champion of the school.

Is this a democracy?

Feet scuttled, children whispered and the building fell silent as everyone took up their positions. Kakaw rolled underneath the table and hid in the shadows close to the wall. At first it was brilliant fun. Lasers fizzed around the room and receivers buzzed as the children battled. Kakaw jumped in shock as his receiver beeped and vibrated. Slowly turning his head he spotted Skip hiding amongst the vines in the corner of the class. As soon as Skip had taken his shot, he ducked off to find a new position. Kakaw felt furious, this was his game, how could he have been tagged already! He couldn’t lose. As soon as his buzzer had stopped vibrating a laser tagger steadily appeared over the edge of the table. The bright pink laser beam shot straight towards his receiver and shattered in to a 1000 sparkling stars. Kangoo had stealthily crept unseen on to the top of the table and the whole while she had waited for the perfect shot. Kakaw stormed off to find a new place to hide.

A bright blue laser beam burst across the room, from behind the chairs a fountain of blue and yellow sparkles sprayed into the air. A player had been hit and this meant one thing, someone was scoring big points!

Kakaw panicked and rolled in to the storage cupboard. His laser armour clattered and clunked as he came to a stop. Gradually Kakaw caught his breath, and hands shaking he reached down for his laser receiver. Glancing around in the darkness he gave a quick tap to reset the glowing, green screen.  A large zero began to intermittently flash on his refreshed, screen! From amongst the shadows a red light emanated. Two all seeing glowing circles shone brightly. Skip had turned on his night vision goggles and he had seen Kakaw's creeping. He pushed his red emergency button and the game over siren echoed out around the building.

Everyone swiftly gathered in the classroom.

“He pressed his receiver,” accused Skip, reluctantly pointing at Kakaw.

“Let me check offered,” Kangoo “I know I tagged him once so there should at least be a score of one on his screen,”  she explained. The guilty, green zero flickered on Kakaw’s receiver. His eyes were lowered. Suddenly a smile crept across his face. “My game, my rules he began...new rule, I can reset my receiver whenever I wish.” The room exploded into a rumble of  arguments, “this is not fair,” shouted Skip. Amongst the loud voices nobody had noticed that Mr Kakariki had rejoined the group, he was not tall but yet as he spoke it seemed like he filled the room. “ Excuse me, it is clear that this is not working,” began Mr Kakariki. “But you promised that you would not lead the class today and here you are taking control,” began Kakaw as politely as he could.

“That’s correct,” replied Mr Kakariki softly. “I won’t lead the class,” he patiently added. “Let’s have a vote to select a few people to represent the group. Of course Kakaw, you can be one of the representatives,” he continued. One by one the childrens’ names were called out and they voted for 4 new leaders. Skip beamed when he heard his name called. Hand after hand slowly raised up into the air and the fortunate Skip was selected. The 5 leaders gathered at the front of the class.

What is a democracy?

Example answer: A system where people vote to decide who leads the country. The government (leaders) then listen to, and consider the views of the people. Where people are given a choice over decisions. Where the ideas of others are considered. Where leaders represent the people.

 

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Naturally they all still wanted to continue with their laser tag game. “Great,” said Kakaw” now there are 5 of us that can reset our receivers.” Skip smiled, “you know that I won’t agree, that is not fair,” he added. Kakaw winked and shook Skip’s hand, “I know Skip, I’m just joking with you, I was wrong.,,” he admitted. “We must all agree on what is fair.” And so the 5 of them thoughtfully put together some rules to suit the whole class. The children cheered. There was a scuttle of feet, a short silence, the air filled with sparks and laser beams, and the fun began again! Of course this time it was fair!

Do you have democracy in your country?

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Why is democracy important?

Example answers: so that decisions are made fairly, so that the decisions consider the thoughts of everyone.

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Democracy

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Working Together School Assembly

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Can you give an example of when you have worked as a member of a team?

Example Answer: Playing on a netball team, playing on a football team, group tasks during lessons, when playing games at playtime.

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What are some of the advantages of working as a member of a team?

Example Answer: It can be fun, you can share skills, you can share workload.

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The atmosphere was frenetic, everyone dashed around collecting up their things. The ancient sphere palace at the edge of the jungle had started to glow once more. Engulfed by the trees the palace remained hidden except for once a year when the summer moon was at its largest. The old gears of the sphere palace would slowly start to creek and grind. From great cracks in the ancient rusty surface the strange golden light would escape and like moths to a lamp the locals would come. They would come in search of treasure for the legend said that when the golden lights glowed the palace treasures would be revealed.

“Mumbo  jumbo,” barked Tiki. “Come on let’s not rush,” she protested as Wecka scrambled around packing. The beautiful golden light cast long shadows across the land. Wecka’s face glowed as he excitedly explained to Tiki,  “This could be our only chance, sooner or later someone will make it to the centre of the sphere palace and our shot at the treasure will be lost.”

“It’s just a silly ancient maze,” remarked Tiki. “One massive joke from our ancestors, they would be rolling around laughing if they knew that every year we all rushed into their rust bucket of a palace and dashed around the metal maze looking for treasures. There’s no treasure!”

“There has to be and we’re going to find it,” declared Wecka. Hurriedly, the pair set off along the dusty track. Up ahead a snake of tiny figures made their way back from the sphere palace along the steep hill side, it moved slowly  and as the weary faces came into view Wecka  tried to ignore the exhausted, disappointed expressions. “Why would we find the treasure when they cannot?” questioned an irritated Tiki.

“Ok, if in 3 hours time we are walking back down this hill, miserable as can be, then you can complain,” replied Wecka patiently. “For now let’s just enjoy the adventure,” he added. Tiki agreed not to grumble so much, and the pair steadily made their way through the rubbery green leaves of the jungle. “Hey guys,” called a cheerful voice. High up in the branches amongst the foliage Ketcha’s happy face beamed down at them. “Look at all of these shmaw berries,” he shouted. A rain of beautiful juicy berries showered to the ground as Ketcha shook a laden branch. Wecka and Tiki smiled with delight and tried to catch as many as they could. “They’re delicious,” declared Tiki. A berry fell straight into her open mouth, and she chewed the juicy jelly like centre. “It’s a pity,” said Ketcha, “by tomorrow the birds will have eaten all of these. If I’d have known that there were so many up here, then I would have brought a bag to carry some home.” Tiki looked at Wecka and his bulging backpack. “Well I suppose we could give you some space in our packs,” she offered. Ketcha was an incredible climber and needing no more encouragement, he was swinging across the canopy shaking the berries to the floor, the tantalising purple fruits peppered the dusty ground. Tiki and Wecka dashed to collect up as many as they could carry. Elegantly Ketcha climbed down the tree, it was amazing how he gripped the smooth bark like a squirrel. “Thanks guys,” smiled Ketcha as he gathered his breath.” Let me guess,” he puffed, “you're off to the sphere palace?” “Yes, we are” ,replied Tiki in a less than enthusiastic tone. “I tell you what, in return for helping me carry all of the berries, I’ll come and help you. It’s the least I can do. It will be an adventure.”

“ Oh yes it will,” smiled Wecka giving Tiki a cheeky nudge.

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And so the three adventurers continued to trudge uphill amongst the towering trees and curtains of vines. The golden glow made the jungle feel even more magical than usual. Butterflies danced below the canopy, their wings glistening in the light. Every so often the beautiful insects would scatter disturbed by another weary adventurer trudging past on their way back from the palace. As the dense forest began to thin the golden glow intensified. The sphere palace appeared to be getting brighter. Silhouetted against the light they could see figure after figure flailing and flapping as they flew from the pipes that dangled from the sphere palace. The pipes slowly writhed in the air like the tentacles of a gigantic jellyfish. “Once the maze has defeated you the only way out is through those pipes,” smiled Wecka.

“Why are you smiling?” questioned Tiki, “it looks terrifying.”

“ It look s amazing,” argued Wecka, “imagine the highest water slide you’ve ever seen and then double what you picture. Sure the water at the end will be a little cold, but we’ll soon warm up in this heat,” he added.

“Looks good to me,” mumbled Ketcha cramming a handful of juicy berries into his mouth.

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Down below the grumbles and groans of the crowds of adventurers cut through the trio’s conversation. The crowd pushed and bleated like a herd of hungry animals. Suddenly a dripping hand appeared from the cliff edge. Clambering over the tussocky cliff came a very soggy and out of breath Mishcka. “Fancy meeting you guys here,” she puffed.”

“Let me guess,”  inquired Ketcha. “You’ve been in the sphere palace after the treasure.”

“ Let ME guess,” said Tiki mimicking Ketcha with a sarcastic smile, “you didn’t find any treasure.”

“To be honest I couldn’t get out of there quick enough, so much pushing and shouting and shoving. It was enough to drive anyone mad.” Wecka took Mishcka’s hand and helped her to her feet. “Why don’t you come and give it another go with us? If we all work together, there won’t be any pushing and shoving or arguing.” Even Tiki agreed that it sounded like a good idea.

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“Why not” declared Mishcka in a more cheerful voice. And so the foursome set off down towards the towering, glowing sphere palace.

How do the group of friends seem different to the other adventurers?

Example: They seem calmer, they work together, they listen to each other.

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The cogs let out a loud rumble and the maze began to change shape again. The walls vibrated and a cloud of rust filled the air. The cracks expanded and contracted and the intense glowing light forced the foursome to cover their eyes. When the light faded and their eyes reopened the maze had changed once more. “Well there is no need for the map then,” declared Wecka stuffing the crinkled, faded papers into his pocket.” The group wondered in amongst the shadows of the towering walls, they looked truly tiny up against the massive construction. The maze was cold and strangely quiet inside. The complaining crowd now seemed far away. As the group rounded the corner they were met by a shear wall that appeared to stretch on forever. “Well that’s it,” sighed Tiki. “I did say that this was a bad idea,” she reminded everyone.

“I’m not giving up that easily,” chirped Wecka. “Ketcha you’re the best climber in the village, you can make it up there.  Mishcka I know you are good at rope work, can you make sure that he is safe while he climbs?” Mishcka pulled a coil of rope from her pack and tied the eager Ketcha in so that she was secure. Needing no more encouragement Ketcha began to scale the seemingly impossible wall. He swung from hand hold to hand hold with ease like a monkey swinging through the jungle. Wecka called up with encouragement from below. Before long Ketcha had scaled the gigantic wall, he beamed down at the trio. “There is a lever here,” he called. As he pulled the ornate,  stone lever there was a loud crunch and a rumble. The wall began to vibrate and with a grinding and groan it slowly descend down towards the trio like an ancient rocky elevator.

“Woohoo!” Called Wecka in excitement. With everyone happily on the platform, Ketcha pulled hard on the stoney lever once again and they began to rise up into the unknown reaches of the maze. Ketcha was still some what out of breath after his epic climb, he crouched gasping for air. Tiki reached into her pack and handed Ketcha a handful of the refreshing smaw berries. “Here, these will give you some energy,” she smiled. After chewing the delicious berries Ketcha felt revitalised and ready to continue. The high walls of the maze concentrated the glowing light and everyone squinted to see as they moved further into the depths of the palace. Tiki pulled on her sun goggles. “Hand me the rope,” asked Tiki. Mischka felt around in her pack for the rope and as she stretched her hand out into the blinding light she felt Tiki’s firm grip. Tiki quickly tied everyone on to the safety rope and carefully, using her sun goggles to help her to see the way forward, she led the group deeper in to the maze. Although the rest of the group could no longer see, they still chatted amongst themselves and trusted Tiki’s lead. “It’s ok,” announced Tiki. “Open your eyes, the glowing is not as bright here.” The towering walls had begun to block out the intense light and a glow much like that of a fine summers evening filled the maze. Everything looked beautiful in the warm golden light. The maze opened up and through a gap in the wall, they could see out across the land. The warm light bathed everything as far as the horizon.

How have the group worked well as a team?

Wecka leading the group, Ketcha climbing, Mishcka looking after the safety rope, Tiki leading the group when they could not see.

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Adjacent to the gap in the wall were a series of strange carvings. Wecka strained to see them, the rock had become warn and weathered making it difficult to read what had once been written. “One second”, said Mishacka  reaching inside her pocket. She pulled out a hand full of smaw berries and as the others looked on in confusion, she smothered the berries across the wall, bursting their juices over the dry stoney surface. The crimson juice of the berries ran across the wall and dripped inside the crevices of the carvings. As the vivid, red juice collected in the warn cracks the message became clear. Wecka smiled at Mishcka. It was a riddle! It read: to reveal what the sphere palace hides you need what many have forgotten. You need to work. You need a type of work that involves no I and no one. The group looked at each other in confusion.

Can you solve the riddle?

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“We’ve come this far we can’t give up,” announced Tiki. Ketcha shovelled a handful of berries into his mouth, “I’ve not got a clue what it means,” he said in a muffled voice. Wecka laughed. “Come on guys, we have had the answer to this one all along. A type of work with no I in it. It is the type of work that we are best at. There is no I in team work and no one in team work. There has to be a group for a team,” he explained. “Like us!” Smiled Tiki.

The maze began to rumble, the gears started to turn, there was an ancient creaking noise. Slowly the earth swallowed the walls of the maze as they retracted downwards into the ground. The group were left high above the remains of the palace and there in the middle of the plateaux was the source of the glowing light...

What do you think is the source of the glowing light?

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... a towering pile of glittering, golden treasure!

Wecka looked at the glistening smiling eyes of his friends around him. He felt filled with pride and warmth.“Sometimes good team work really pays off,” beamed Wecka.

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Protecting the environment

Protecting the environment Click the link to download the accompanying powerpoint.

Assembly Script

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Can you think of any part of our environment that is worth protecting?

Example answers: parks, forests, beaches, mountains, school grounds, lakes, rainforests, meadows.

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What can we do to help the environment?

Example answers: plant trees, turn off unused lights, use water sparingly, pick up litter, reuse items, walk to school, compost.

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In the shadow of the mountain on the shores of the Sagan Sea lived Kiraroo. Kiraroo loved his home. He loved the roar of the crashing waves, the smell of the sea air and the glow of the turquoise water around him. Every morning Kiraroo would wake early and take his sand horse out for a ride over the ancient boulders behind his house. Sand horses are rather strange creatures, imagine a sea horse with legs and you will have a good idea of the beauty of these pastel coloured beasts. Kiraroo knew the boulders like no one else. He could gallop along their surface bouncing from boulder to boulder with ease. He knew every twist and turn of the ashen rocks. Kiraroo’s favourite place was called the razor back, it was a huge formation of gigantic, jagged stones. Like the scales of a stegosaurus they extended high in to the sky. Nature had placed them almost too perfectly so that Kiraroo and his sand horse could climb a boulder propelling themselves from the tip of the rock high into the air in the knowledge that they would land safely on the down ward slope of the next boulder. This roller coaster boulder ride would continue for almost as far as the eye could see. Kiraroo loved the feeling of gliding through the air on his sand horse. You can imagine what a rare and fantastic trail this created for him.

Kiraroo awoke extra early, he was planning on completing his weekly litter pick before taking his sand horse for a long ride. Every week he would ensure that the beach and ancient boulders were spotless from any litter that the ocean had washed up. He felt that it was his way of giving back to the beach and the boulders for all of the fun that they provided him with. Kiraroo’s sand horse elegantly trotted up the ancient mossy surface of the highest boulder, his ragged sea weed like mane danced in the wind. Carried on the breeze was an eerie scratching and scraping sound.  Staring down below, he spotted smoke rising from a nearby boulder. As Kiraroo drew nearer he was met with a disturbing sight...

What do you think Kiraroo saw?

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... the villagers from the settlement in the valley were drilling and hammering at the ancient boulders. Kiraroo and his sand horse thundered down the rocks towards the wretched noise.  His horse reared and bayed as he drew to a sudden halt in front of the clouds of dust and hammering. A pick axe crashed to the floor. “What can I help you with,” inquired a rough voice abruptly.

“I want to know why you are hammering away at the beautiful boulders,” replied Kiraroo confidently. “I have ridden these boulders every day since I was young, I love riding out here and I hate to see the landscape being destroyed,” added Kiraroo. The dark fur on the figures head ruffled in the wind and his hard ochre coloured eyes softened a little. “I am sorry young one, we are just mining rock for the village below. We want to extend the road and rebuild the wall around the school,” he calmly declared.

“You must find somewhere else to mine,” pleaded Kiraroo. This landscape is rare and ancient and I enjoy it every day,” he explained.

“That’s as maybe but it makes excellent building material,” retorted the figure in a matter of fact tone. The clinking and clanking began again as the villagers continued to chip away at the boulders. Kiraroo tried to explain that the boulders were important, but his voice was lost amongst the grunting and clanking of the workers.

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Feeling rather helpless Kiraroo turned his sand horse and slumped on his back he made his way towards home. Faster and faster he galloped over the rocky surface in an effort to forget about the destruction he had just seen. Over the rhythmic tapping of his horse’s hooves he could hear the sound of the clinking and clanking tools playing over and over in his mind. Kiraroo couldn’t forget. He approached the ancient oak forest which fringed the top of the highest boulders. Some how Kiraroo had always felt comforted by the splash of green provided by the miniature trees. He dismounted his horse and dashed in amongst the ancient gnarled trunks of the forest. It felt damp and still within the grove of trees. Still the image of destruction played over in Kiraroo’s mind. In sadness he lay down on a cushion of moss and buried his head in the soft leafy surface. Underneath the moss Kiraroo could see what seemed like a light, it twinkled and danced amongst the shadows. Carefully Kiraroo began to dig away at the surface, but as he got closer the twinkling stopped. In the corner of his eye he noticed another glint of light. This time the twinkling was brighter but the source was tiny, no larger than a marble. Swiftly Kiraroo thrust his hand towards the light. He clenched his fingers,  tight, they began to glow. The marble of light was warm. Kiraroo couldn’t tell if it was his imagination but it felt as if it was moving inside his clenched fist.  Through the gaps of his loosened fingers, he peered in to his hand. The strange shining ball was indeed vibrating; it darted erratically from side to side. As Kiraroo opened his fingers wider, the ball suddenly stopped and the light began to fade. He clenched his fist a little more and knelt down amongst the moss, he waited, watching. Slowly the glowing became stronger and stronger. As he stared at the light he could see that there was something inside it, he poked a finger into the strange ball. It felt wet! There was a high pitched “ouch.” In disbelief Kiraroo stared at what he could now see more clearly. In the middle of the ball was a strange round glowing creature, no larger than the smallest of pea’s.  The purple creature had very wide eyes for something so tiny. “Put me back,” ordered the creature in an irritated tone.

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“I’m sorry” replied Kiraroo. "I didn’t realise that I was picking up some one’s home, I thought I’ d found some kind of treasure,” he explained.

“What do you mean you didn’t realise?” questioned the fury little beast. “Don’t you live in a water ball too?” The creature added innocently. Kiraroo smiled, he told the creature all about his home and explained how he had come to be lying in the moss and how he had spotted the strange glowing of the creature's water ball home. “Well, we all live in water balls,” retorted the creature. "The moss collects the water and we turn it into our homes, it is both our house, food and our drink, it is the most important thing to a squadge hopper and the only way that we can survive. We have lived up in the moss on these boulders for centuries,” continued the squadge hopper. “The water runs off the boulders and we use it to make our homes.” Kiraroo couldn’t believe what he was seeing. The commotion had now attracted quite a crowd, the mossy surface glistened with 1000's of twinkling lights vibrating and humming in high pitched voices.  They appeared to be getting quite irate. “I really didn’t mean to upset you,” explained Kiraroo.

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“It is not you that we are upset with,” piped up a particularly bright glowing squadge hopper. “We are angry with the villagers that you met, the ones who were mining at the rocks. These rocks are our homes too. In fact if it wasn’t for us those villagers would be in quite a mess,” continued the squadge hopper. “Have you ever thought about what happens to the water that runs off these steep boulders?”

What do you think would happen to the water? Example answers: The water would run off the boulders and flood the town below.

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“We take up that water for our homes. While most creatures shelter we buzz around these rocks collecting as much as we can. Do you know what would happen if we just left all of that water?" He questioned.  Kiraroo thought for a second but before he could answer a tiny squadge hopper continued, “it would run off all of those rocks in a torrent and the village in the valley would flood.” This made the squadge hoppers even more irate, they flickered and twinkled, mumbled and grumbled and jumped and bumped amongst the rocks. “we won’t help, we won’t help chanted the furious squadge hoppers!”

"I will talk to them," declared Kiraroo, he jumped on his horse and thundered down the boulders in a cloud of dust and dirt. Before long he was back amongst the grinding and screeching of the villagers and their mining tools. He explained about the squadge hoppers and their homes, he explained about the rain and the water, he pleaded for them to listen. The villagers did not listen. They did not stop.

That evening as the grey thunder clouds collected over the hills, Kiraroo felt sick. The rains began gently at first, the rocks trickled with water. Throughout the night the storm built, rain thrashed against the windows and the wind howled through the rocks. Morning came and Kiraroo dashed down the flowing hillside to the village below. He was met with a lake of water, luckily the walls and roof tops of the village still poked above the murky floods. Everyone was sheltered in the school. “Is everyone ok?” Blurted Kiraroo as he rushed into the school hall.

“We’re all fine,” replied the major. “We are so sorry that we did not listen to you. The main thing is that everyone is ok. Never again will we mine away at the rocks, the creatures help us to live happily in our village. We won’t forget that,” declared the mayor.

Can you think of anything in our environment that helps us? Example answers: trees taking in carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen. Hedgerows absorbing noise. Worms and other decomposers breaking down organic waste. Ladybirds eating pest insects (aphids)

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Kiraroo felt so very relieved, once again he mounted his horse and this time he headed in search of the squadge hoppers, but as hard as Kiraroo searched he could not find them. And to this day he still has not, he knows that they are there amongst the rocks because whenever it rains the village remains dry and safe. Often Kiraroo sits and wonders about what else hides amongst the ancient boulders of his beautiful rocky home.

Did you know that a real creature not so different to a squadge hopper actually exists on earth. It is called a frog hopper and the larva of this creature covers itself in a froth which protects it from predators. Want to see one? Click here.

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Feeling Left Out (School Assembly)

Feeling left out school assembly Click here to download the accompanying Powerpoint.

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Assembly Script

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Do you have a best friend?

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Whether you have a best friend or not, what do you think a best friend should be like? Example answers: trustworthy, kind, fun, listen to others, sharing, reliable, honest.

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Meet Kaito.

Not everyone has a best friend but Kaito did and Kaito’s best friend was called Kuto. Kaito and Kuto loved to play together, their favourite hobby was bubble bouncing. At playtimes they would rush out to the bubble bouncing machine and bounce high up into the sky on the huge, soft sparking bubbles.  Their goal was to be able to bounce all of the way up to the cotton wool clouds above. The pair had heard whispers in the playground that the upper level of the clouds were like something from a dream. Unfortunately they had only once managed to bounce high enough to even catch a glimpse of the clouds and so the wonderful world of the upper clouds remained a mystery to them.   It was strange because as magnificent as the bubble bouncing machine was Kaito did not enjoy playing with it as much when Kuto was not there. In fact Kaito felt very lost when she was not with her best friend.

What is your favourite game that you like to play with your friends?

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But today Kuto was there, and Kaito and Kuto were bouncing high up in the air on perhaps the largest bubbles they had ever made. Kuto giggled as she popped a rainbow tinted bubble, the pair joyfully fell down towards the safety of another soft spongy bubble of fun. Kaito heard a giggling from down below. “Wow that looks amazing,” exclaimed an unfamiliar voice. “Who’s that?” questioned Kaito.

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“I don’t know,” replied  Kuto as she peered down through the bubble towards the figure below. Kaito sunk her teeth into the bubble and with a pop the pair tumbled down and landed on the jelly like floor of the playground. The figure began to bounce and wobble as the shock wave of Kaito and Kuto’s fall passed through the bright green jellified ground. The figure giggled again, “such fun” she declared trying to contain her laughter. Kuto beamed, “come and have a go, it is as fun as it looks.”

“In my last school we just had a slide and a climbing frame,” remarked the figure in disbelief.

“It’s not like that here,” smiled Kuto. “You can climb as high as you like, you can get up into the clouds if you’re a good enough climber,” boasted Kuto, “I’ve heard that some of the older children can do it.”

“What if you fall?”  questioned the figure rather timidly. Kuto laughed, “you really aren’t from around here are you. The jelly tarmac will cushion your fall, its one hundred times softer than the softest duvet,” added Kuto. Kaito interrupted looking a little displeased from the loss of attention going her way. “The air here is thicker too,” she snapped, “falling is a little like diving through water.” The figures’ eyes widened and she began to fizz with excitement “unbelievable,”  she gasped. Kuto smiled, “what’s your name?” she questioned.

“Arwa,” replied the girl, “can I play too?” she added.

“Of course,” smiled Kuto “come and join us.” She took hold of Arwa’s hand and hoisted her up on to a shimmering, bouncing bubble. Kaito did not look so sure about it all. Happily Kuto and Arwa bounced higher and higher into the air until their laughing voices seemed far and distant. Kaito grumbled to herself and hurriedly hopped onto a huge bubble to try to catch up.

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The next few days were strange for Kaito. Wherever Kuto was so was Arwa. “It’s  great having another friend smiled Kuto.”

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“Yes brilliant,” answered Kaito rather miserably, but Kuto was having too much fun to notice the displeased tone of Kaito’s voice.

Why was Kaito feeling sad? Example answer: Kaito was not getting as much attention from Kuto as she used to. Kaito was jealous of Kuto’s friendship with Arwa.

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What was worse for Kaito was that after years of Kaito and Kuto trying and dreaming they had finally bounced up into the lower cloud zone of the playground and this all just happened to occur in the week that Arwa had arrived. They were now so close to Kaito and Kuto’s dream of finding out what lay above the playground. The three of them bobbed and bounced among the cotton wool clouds. Kuto and Arwa were delighted. However Kaito was not as pleased to be sharing her dream with Arwa, it was as if Kaito didn’t notice the fun of the mint marshmallow like clouds. “Look at this,” shouted Arwa as she gathered up a cloud into a parachute shape and floated back down to the ground. Kaito could hear her giggling as she floated away into the distance. “Come on Kuto,” encouraged Kaito “let’s see if we can bounce up higher.”

“Let’s see if we can parachute down and catch up with Arwa,” smiled Kuto.  She gathered up some cotton wool cloud and elegantly dived from the edge. “Come onnnnnnn she called,” as she slowly drifted through the air. Kaito did not go. She slumped down on the soft surface of the cloud feeling utterly miserable.

How could Kaito make herself feel better? Example answer: Kaito could join in with the fun and give the new dynamic in their friendship a chance.

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“Why did Arwa ever have to come along?” complained Kaito to herself. “Now Kuto and Arwa are best friends and I’m just an extra.”

“Don’t be so silly,” came a voice from above. With a pop and a whisp a head appeared through the mint cotton wool cloud. It was Kora, one of the older children at school. “How long have you been up there?” asked a surprised Kaito.

“All of playtime,” replied Kora, she gave a warm smile. “My class mates and I always come up here to play cloud ball.”

“What’s that?” inquired Kaito. I’ll tell you in a while when you have stopped being such a misery guts, she replied. Kaito couldn’t believe that someone as cool as Kora was actually taking the time to talk to her!

“Now,” Kora began “... I saw you earlier looking all grumpy just because Arwa has come along.  I see lots of interesting things while I play up here.  Am I right about Arwa?” she questioned.

“Yes,” replied Kaito reluctantly.

“You know I used to be a bit like you,” said Kora “I had a best friend who was the only person that I would ever play with, I was very possessive of my friend but as I got older I realised that it was good to have lots of friends. Many games are much more fun when there are more than two of you. In fact come up here and I’ll show you.”

“Really! Kaito replied in a shaky voice.  “You wouldn’t believe how long Kuto and I have dreamt about playing up there.”

Have you ever seen someone looking like they are being left out of a game or friendship?

(There is no need for verbal answers, the children can just think about this).

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“Well come on then,” encouraged an excited Kora. With all her force Kaito jumped up to reach Kora’s hand but however hard she tried she sunk into the soft cotton wool cloud below her feet. “Come down here and help me,” pleaded Kaito in desperation. She was so close to reaching the top of the clouds. “Ok,” replied Kora cheerfully. Kora slipped down through the light green cloud and landed with a puff next to Kora. “Here stand on my shoulders,” instructed Kora. Kaito carefully climbed up onto Kora’s shoulders but as she nervously put her weight onto Kora they both began to sink further and further into the thick cloud below. “How in the world did you ever get up there?” puffed Kaito. Kora smiled a friendly smile.

“It takes three,” she chuckled. Kora called for her friend Woot who quickly popped his hand through the cloud. Kaito could just reach Woot’s white waving hand above her head and she grabbed on tight. “Now grab my hand as he pulls,” called Kora from below. Kaito stretched downward with her other hand and Kora held on to the sweating palm that greeted her. And so they were pulled through the thick water like air up into the clouds. Kaito gasped with excitement as she saw the delights of the upper cloud, the children had crafted a gigantic cloud playground. There were climbing towers that disappeared into the sky, aerial assault courses of ropes and trapezes and what seemed like an endless zip wire all made from the soft spongy cloud.  Kaito turned to Kora and thanked her for showing her the magical cloud playground. “I must share this with Kuto and Arwa,” whispered Kaito  as began to climb down through the soft minty cloud. Kaito called back up to Kora, “by the way, I do get it... sometimes it is good to have more than one friend! Without the two of you I may never have seen the cloud playground,” she declared.

And so hurriedly Kaito descended from the clouds and caught up with Kuto and Arwa. Kaito smiled and quietly joined in with their game and that was all it took, soon they were all giggling and having fun together.

How else could you get help if you felt left out at school? Example answers : Talk to a teacher or teaching assistant, talk to parents or carers, talk to a friend or talk to reliable older children.

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Living In The Present (School Assembly)

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What are you looking forward to right now? Example answers: Holidays, lunch, play time, birthdays, Christmas, parties, visiting friends.

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What is your favourite memory from this term so far?

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Fuzzle basked on the banks of The Rainbow River. The colourful water peacefully flowed down stream gently bubbling as it went on its way. Fuzzle could feel the welcoming warmth of the sun on his skin, he closed his eyes and dreamt of the adventure that lay before him. In a few hours he would begin his epic journey down The Rainbow River (the longest river in the land). Fuzzle and his friend Tutara had been planning the expedition for over a year. He tried to relax but he felt full of anticipation and excitement, he had read of the wondrous water falls and rapids that lay ahead, the mysterious caves cut into the land by the mighty river and the gargantuan canyons that the waters ran through.

The pair would embark on their trip on their trusty river roamers. These hi tech machines are powered by the sun, they can reach great speeds as they effortlessly glide along the water surface. Imagine a jet ski like water craft the shape of a dart and you will have a good idea of what this torpedo like contraption looks like.

Fuzzle and Tutara loved nothing more than riding their river roamers, they had trained hard for their expedition and had become very skilful riders.  “These look about ready,” declared Fuzzle as he added the last of the grease to the iridescent base of the river roamer. Tutara carefully closed his pack, “I’ve double checked and we have all of the equipment we need,” he said.

“So looks like we are set,” beamed Fuzzle. Tutara smiled back.  The pair loaded their packs into the river roamers and assumed the familiar riding position on their crafts. “lets not go too fast,” requested Tutara “I want to enjoy every minute.”

“I can’t wait to get to The Thunder Canyon,” announced Fuzzle. The cliffs reach high up into the clouds and they’re covered in jade leaved trees,” he added thoughtfully.

“Ok, but not too fast,” reaffirmed Tutara. Fuzzle started up the engine of his river roamer with a roar, the water began to rumble as he revved his craft. Tutara gently pulled away on his electric blue river roamer, from underneath his craft he spotted a shoal of jewel like gum ball fish darting amongst the water weed. He smiled, he loved nature, he loved the river. A wave of water, a roar of engine and a gust of air and the gum ball fish darted for cover. Tutara stared upstream as Fuzzle disappeared around the meander in a cloud of water spray and excitement. Gently Tutara accelerated his river roamer and began his journey.

How do Tutara’s and Fuzzle’s attitudes towards the trip differ?

Example answer: Fuzzle wanted to rush ahead and was looking forward to what they would see at the end of the trip. Tutara wanted to take it slowly and to appreciate every minute of the journey.

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The sun made beautiful glowing patterns on the river water which reflected amongst the foliage on the river bank. Fuzzle glided along dreaming of the magnificent Thunder Canyon, “I think we are about 2 days away,” shouted Fuzzle over his shoulder. “We need to cover as much distance as we can today,” he added. Tutara did not want to rush, he was enjoying the golden glow of the river and the fun of hopping over the rocks in the rapids.  Avoiding a large mossy boulder he swerved to a halt, there was a squawk in the trees and there above him through the leaves he could make out a nest of rainbow egrets. They looked like little pterodactyls as they soared high up in the trees. “Look at this,” yelled Tutara admiring the fascinating creatures. Fuzzle splashed to a stop, he whipped out his E phone and took a photo of the squawking rainbow egrets and then having barely floated to a stop he sped off up stream again.

As Fuzzle rounded the bend a shower of jade leaves streamed from the trees on the valley side. A beautiful rainbow arched above. Tutara stared in wonder at the beautiful colours and he traced the arch in an effort to find the end of it. At what seemed like the end of the rainbow, Tutara noticed a crevasse running through the forest. The water was filled with reflected pastel colours, “Fuzzle!” called Tutara, “lets go down here” but it was no use Fuzzle was too far away.

Why do you think Tutara noticed the crevasse when Fuzzle didn’t? Example answers: Tutara took his time and so noticed more of his surroundings. Fuzzle just rushed past everything.

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Fuzzle stared dead ahead as he zoomed along ignoring the spray that peppered his face. Tutara decided that he would explore the crevasse, carefully he lined his river roamer up with the entrance and edged in. The sides of the crevasse were covered with turquoise crystals that shimmered in the evening light, the water was sheltered and still like a mill pond. There was a strange whistling from deep within the crevasse, it sounded like the wind but the air was perfectly still. Having come this far Tutara decided to explore further. He continued deeper through the beautiful water, the mysterious whistling grew louder and louder. In disbelief he stared up at the top of the hill side. Slowly emerging from the trees he saw a dozen small turquoise figures. They almost seemed at one with the vegetation as they moved. At first he thought they were just shadows but they were not. They were the Ashicka tribe and they stared back at Tutara, with a look on their faces very similar to his own disbelieving stare. There was silence. Tutara floated by not daring to make a move. The eyes of the Ashicka’s looked incredibly large and white against their turquoise face paint. As Tutara floated away down stream one of the younger Ashicka purposefully reached behind his back. Tutara’s heart began to beat faster, he felt sick. Ashicka were known for their skill with a hunting bow and for their aggression towards unwanted visitors. If the boy drew his bow he would surely have no chance. The young Ashicka slowly pulled his arm back from around his neck. Tutara held his breath and tried to focus on smoothly steering his river roamer down stream. Grasped in the young Ashicka’s hand was a cord necklace with a beautiful glistening arrow like pendant, it was carved from turquoise crystal. The boy threw the necklace to Tutara. Tutara couldn’t believe it, the fear began to fade and in its place he felt shear delight. Why would the young Ashicka show him such kindness? Tutara began to float out of sight, he reached into his rubbery pack and pulled out his glow torch. As he floated past a flat mossy rock he made a large, careful movement and placed his glow torch upon the spongy surface. His river roamer entered the river bend and disappeared from sight. Tutara called back “for you...”

 

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Tutara smiled, never in his wildest dreams had he thought that he would ever meet an elusive ancient tribe like the Ashicka. He felt accepted and privileged to have met them.

Mean while Fuzzle’s legs were beginning to ache, he had been gripping tight to the river roamer all day and he had covered an impressive distance. As his eyes grew weary he used all his skill to ride and react to the changing river surface, it required a lot of concentration to travel at such high speeds.

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Why had Tutara’s and Fuzzle’s day been so different? Example answers: Tutara appreciated every second of what he had been doing. Fuzzle just thought about what lay ahead and rushed to get to the end. Tutara missed everything that had been all around him.

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In front of Tutara the crevasse widened, he was joining the main river again. From downstream he heard the familiar roar of a river roamer and it was travelling fast. Fuzzle whizzed past the crevasse exit, his eyes focused on his path. This time Tutara did not bother to call, he shifted down a gear and began to accelerate. Pushing the booster button he shot forward at a tremendous rate, Tutara stood up on the river roamers pedals and used his body weight to lean around the corner.

As Fuzzle heard Tutara’s engine behind him he turned his head and smiled. Pushing his boost button a burst of flames flicked from his exhaust and Fuzzle’s craft whooshed off upstream. The pair continued to ride in convoy for another couple of hours. Finally Fuzzle pulled over amongst the reeds. He wearily pulled off his helmet, wiping the sweat from his brow he turned to Tutara who was just manoeuvring his bike in to the bank “this looks like a good flat spot for the camping pods,” he shouted.

The pair were soon sitting around a roaring campfire with their camping pods inflated and ready for the night. Tutara’s face glowed as he regaled  Fuzzle with his stories from the journey, he tried to contain his excitement as he reached the part about the Ashicka. Fuzzle wondered at the beautiful turquoise pendant around Tutara’s neck. “So what about your day?” asked Tutara politely. Fuzzle stared wearily at the floor. “I have very little to tell,” he sighed. “I have focused so much on rushing and getting as far as I could that I think I have actually missed everything!” “You know I don’t think I could tell you one thing that I have seen today except for the constant spray of river water.” Tutara patted Fuzzle sympathetically on the back. “Well, we are lucky that we are just on day one, we have a long, long journey up ahead with many memories to make and many things to see.” “Lets just take our time so that we can enjoy it,” he added. Fuzzle agreed

“You know,” Fuzzle replied thoughtfully “I think if you rush too much to see something you can miss the amazing things that are all around you.”

And for the rest of the journey the pair did take their time and they captured many magical memories along their way. As for The Thunder Canyon... it was as they had hoped, an incredibly amazing place but not quite as amazing as all of the adventures that they had in getting there.

 living in the present Click here to download the accompanying Powerpoint file.

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