As ‘election fever’ hits the country with the upcoming General Election, we took the opportunity this week to ask the question ‘What is democracy?’ in our assemblies. Over the Easter break we have had a new assembly board put up in a prominent place at the front of the hall. We did this to allow the children to take a more active part in our assemblies both during and after by contributing their ideas to the board.
We started the assembly by asking what the children knew about the voting process and compared it to how they elect their classmates to the School Council. We then talked about The Magna Carta and how it will be 800 years in June since it was signed by King John. The children were asked to add their ideas to Our Magna Carta in order to list the rights they felt all children around the world should have today.
I was very impressed across the week to see how enthusiastically the children contributed their ideas to our charter. After starting with ideas at a very personal level such as ‘not wearing uniform’ and ‘doing no work’, the children then started to think about wider issues and we ended the week with some really profound thinking. Their ideas included:
“All countries to live in peace.”
” Everybody should be allowed to be who they are without being criticised or judged.”
” A good education for all children.”
” The government should make sure all adults and children have lovely food and a nice home.”
” No nastiness.”
What a manifesto! How could anyone argue with that? In next week’s assembly, we will continue with the democracy theme. We want to give the children the chance to take part in their own election on 7th May. However, we will be avoiding party politics and will give them a school-based issue to debate, decide and vote on. More news next week…