Anti-bullying week

In short...

Themes: Making friends; respect; dealing with bullies; finding help; staying safe and happy.

Summary: This assembly explores making friends, as well as how to deal with falling out with a friend and how to deal with bullying. In the UK, Anti-Bullying Week is held in the second week of November. The week is organised by the Anti-Bullying Alliance.

The video

The story from the Bible of David and Goliath. Long ago, the Philistines and the Israelites spent all their time fighting each other. One of the Philistines was a giant bully of a man called Goliath. Everyone was afraid of him. Only David, the smallest of the Israelites, was brave enough to face Goliath. David's story shows you don't have to be big to be brave and that no-one should have to put up with being bullied.

Duration: 05' 43"

Final words: '...Goliath, the big elephant, defeated by David, the tiny ant.'

Video questions

  • What are the two groups of people in the story called that are always fighting each other? (The Philistines and the Israelites.)
  • What does Goliath wear on his legs for protection? (Brass.)
  • What does Goliath say the Israelites look like? (Tiny ants.)
  • What animal does the story say Goliath looks like? (An elephant.)
  • David: 'I may be small but..?' What does David say next? ('...I am brave!')

Key links

Assembly framework (pdf)
Video image: David

Suggested framework

1. Entry music A song about friendship, such as: 'You've got a friend' (Carole King); 'Lean on me' (Bill Withers); 'You've got a friend In me' (Randy Newman); 'We're going to be friends' (The White Stripes).

2. Introduction Display the image of David (see 'Key links'). Tell the children: 'This boy is called David. How does he look?' Gather responses. Ask the children to try to copy his expression. Ask, 'Is that frown a friendly expression?' Allow the children time to respond, then continue: 'We all try to be friendly with each other and that's the right way to be. But sometimes, someone is unfriendly. How does it feel if someone is unfriendly?' Gather responses again. Tell the children: 'Here's a story from the Bible about what can go wrong when people are angry and bullying and unfriendly. It's the story of two people - one called David and the other called Goliath...'

3. The video Play the video. The duration is 05' 43" and the final words are: '...Goliath the big elephant, defeated by David, the tiny ant.'

4. After the video You could use the Story questions and answers (above right) to help the children focus on details from the video.

5. Time to talk Use some or all of the following questions to guide a discussion about David and Goliath: 1. Why do you think Goliath behaved so badly in the story? 2. Why do you think some people become bullies? 3. How do you think David felt about Goliath when he saw him bullying everyone? 4. What does this story tell us about bullying? The children may decide the 'message' of the story is 'be brave and stand up to bullies'. If so, continue the discussion by exploring how such a situation would be dealt with in school... 5. If David and Goliath were happening in school how would we deal with it? 6. Why do we sometimes get angry with each other in school? 7. If you feel sad or scared or unhappy about the way someone has treated you, what should you do? [Guide the children's responses to make these points: Don't hit back - just walk away / Tell someone about what has happened - a friend or parent or teacher / Remember: it's not your fault if someone is a bully / You deserve to be happy and safe and free from bullies, as does everyone else. Conclude the assembly on a positive note by reminding the children of the power of friendship.

6. Opportunity to sing If your assembly is to include a song this would be a good time for it. Suggestions from BBC collections below.

7. Opportunity for reflection 'We are all different, but we are all capable of friendship, sharing and respect. If we respect others, then they will respect us in return. That's how friendship and how sharing works. In the stillness, think to yourself about how you treat you can help to build a happy, friendly school community.'

8. Opportunity for prayer Use your standard form of address ('Dear God', 'Lord Jesus', etc) and: ‘We thank you for our friends. Help us to value and respect the things that matter to them and to share with them true friendship in return. Amen.'

Suggested songs

Down by the riverside (vocal)

Down by the riverside - backing track

Keep the golden rules - Vocal

Keep the golden rules - Backing