Everyone is here!
Make it great!
This is like your family dinner!
Make it so engaging that everyone is glad they came!
Begin and end on a high note with students and staff singing their school song, even as they leave.
If you don’t have a song, use Sister Sledge’s “We are Family”
Making It Great
This is your time to show case your students, their accomplishments and their abilities. Train and assign students to as many parts of your assembly as possible. Your students will rise to the occasion and will gladly take on jobs that show their abilities.
Other than your opening and your year end assemblies, you can have your senior students “MC” your assemblies.
Teach your whole school a quiet” signal so that when your student “MC’s” are at the front of the crowd, they know EXACTLY how to get everyone’s attention.
Write a script that your student “MC’s” can follow so they can comfortably introduce and thank the various presenters. This leadership opportunity teaches them public speaking skills, and bolsters their self confidence as they command an audience of 200-400 people!
Train students and assign them as your “AV Specialists” to set up all your AV equipment well in advance of the assembly. This teaches students how to handle equipment and gives them a chance to shine in this important leadership role.
Train and assign a class or a grade to set up your gym, according to your floor plan, and put things away after the assembly. This teaches your students organizational skills and helps them take pride in school events.
Teach your students a response to a question that you or your “MC’s” ask at the start of the assembly. One that I used was, “How’s Everyone Doing”?The response was, “All Fired Up And Ready To Go!”
Teach the students to shoot their right arm up in the air as they say, “Ready To Go!”
(Needless to say, you can tailor the expression to what ever you want. You don’t have to stick with the phrase I used.)
To make this work, you have to really “sell” it. You have to practice it several times with your whole school so they get the hang of it. If you are not the “Cheerleader” type, you can assign the teaching of this chant to someone on your staff; however, I strongly recommend that you take this one on yourself and that it becomes “yours” with your school.
The beauty of having this wonderful “chant” available at all times, is that when you have outdoor events, you can start up the event with this unifying “chant”.
When you have guest speakers or performers at your school, you can ask the guests to ask the students “How’s Everyone Doing?” and surprise them with the whole school responding, “All Fired Up and Ready To Go!”
The performers will be thrilled that there is so much enthusiasm in your school. Guest speakers will feel welcome and pleased that the students are so engaged before they even start speaking on their topic.
You can ask, “How’s Everyone Doing?” over the PA, and hear students all over the building shouting, “All Fired Up and Ready To Go!”
This suggestion is a “gem”. You have to try it. After you do, you will be thrilled.
You will want to thank me for that one!
My favorite assembly is the very first one of the school year. At this assembly, you set the tone and impart your excitement for the year ahead.
For an elementary school, beginning with a story can be a positive way to start. One that not only tells a story, but sets up a positive behavior program in the school is, How Full Is Your Bucket. You will be able to talk about “bucket fillers” all year long. You can highlight and honor “bucket fillers” at subsequent assemblies so that the whole school knows “bucket filling” is an on-going, school-wide activity.
You will have at least 10 assemblies if you have one a month. Plan your assemblies so they cover a theme or an on-going topic. This will help give you a focus for each assembly.
Here are some suggestions for themes or topics:
- Safety – bring in someone from your local fire or police department
- Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits
- Stephen Covey’s Leader in Me
- Be A Bucket Filler
- Introduce district initiatives
- Introduce the Department of Education’s Mandated Curriculum
- Showcase student talent (feature one grade per month)
- Showcase businesses in your neighborhood (one per month)
Things to Consider For Your Assembly
- What is required for the set up of the room?
- Do you have signs or chair labels for each classroom
- Are students going to sit in long rows across the room or in line up style?
- Are you able to set up the gym the day before the assembly?
- What materials and displays do you need for the assembly?
- Do you have students in charge of AV equipment?
- Have you trained students to set up the gym?
- Have you selected a grade to be in charge of setting up the gym?
- Have you trained your student MC’s?
- Have you written a script for the MC’s?
- Do you have a school song to play while students enter the gym?
- Do you have a great closing song or the school song ready for when the children are leaving the gym?
- Are you musical? If not, have your music teacher take care of the opening and closing songs.
- Have you assigned or chosen a student to lead the national anthem and school song?
- If you are having guest speakers, do you have someone ready to greet them and escort them to the gym?
- Are you ensuring that students and their work or their talents are featured at each assembly?
- Have you made arrangements to ensure parents know they are welcome at all assemblies?
- Have you designated seating arrangements for parents?
- Do you have a clean-up class ready to help you fold chairs and dismantle the gym after the assembly?
School Rules and Behavior Expectations
Creating an atmosphere of respect for students and staff will be your main agenda. To do that, you must think “whole school involvement”. You want your positive behavior and respectful atmosphere to permeate throughout your building.
You will want respectful behavior to be the norm inside and outside your building. A positive learning environment should be the way of life within your school!
To attain that, you must work with your staff to develop a common language for expected behavior in all parts of the building. Once you determine what that behavior should look and sound like, you need to teach the students those expectations.
Details on how to accomplish that can be found in the literature posted to the left of this paragraph or visit the Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports site listed below.
Creating a positive learning environment wherein the behavioral expectations are clear and well understood is not a speedy process; however, it is a critical process. The journey is well worth the outcome!
Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS)
Discipline and Consequence Strategies
To create a positive environment within your school, you must be fair, consistent, calm and predictable with your style of discipline. Issuing consequences for inappropriate behavior must be done in a fair and fitting manner.
Randy Sprick has produced many books and DVD’s that will give you information on how to establish consistency with consequences in classrooms, in the building and on the playground. His materials are timeless and invaluable. I have posted a link to two of his books on the left on this paragraph. It will be worth your while to have his books sitting on a shelf in your office. You will make countless references to those documents over time.
Sprick’s books provide excellent strategies for dealing with inappropriate behavior. If you have a teacher who is having discipline difficulties, you will find Sprick’s material helpful because you can share his suggestions with the teacher.
Check out Sprick’s material, you will not be disappointed!
Email Me to “chat” . I will get back to you PRONTO!