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Educational Entertainment for School Assembly Programs

Updated on May 12, 2015

Did you ever wonder what it really takes to get children to learn? The answer is not much’ – children are predisposed to learning. They want to find out and experiment; they are curious and can discover new problems to solve all by themselves. Education is as much about channeling that enthusiasm and avoiding crushing or smothering it, as it is about working with a fixed curriculum of things children should know.’ Learning in groups, learning from playing, and learning through positive participation all reinforce a great education experience. School assembly programs in particular can help with all three aspects, as long as a few basic underlying principles are respected.

A Scientific Streak in Everyone

Not everybody will grow up to work in a scientific environment, but that isn’t the point we’re making here. Firstly, children naturally have a scientist’s approach to seeing what works and what doesn’t. Nothing beats the feeling for children of discovering something for themselves or of getting an intriguing question right. Secondly, science also now organizes a lot of our world. While imagination and creativity are still essential, rational thinking and a capability for critical analysis are also required. What children do naturally when young is also what they will need to do later in life. The first rule of good educational entertainment is therefore to promote an approach that builds on that natural aptitude.

Real Life Interaction and Engagement

We also have more video and online games available today than we know what to do with. These games can help in many ways, but they typically lack one vital feature. They do not allow players to truly interact. Games that bring children into physical proximity will never go out of fashion because they remain the best way to develop interpersonal skills, enhance health and strengthen bonds. A game as simple as playing catch with a ball in a group can be highly effective. It is a simple activity within almost every child’s grasp for which interaction and engagement can be developed quickly. Assembly shows for schools can use the same principles, for example, with simple questions and answers for the audience, singing or clapping.

Remember Good Organization As Well

Slightly at odds it might seem with the idea of play and spontaneity, good organization is nonetheless a key part of a successful school assembly programs. Yes, having fun means good logistics too! And good behavior during school assembly programs is also part of the educational process. Society imposes certain limits with the aim of allowing everybody to get along. Assembly shows for schools can blend this structure with a fun, learning period, helping children to develop in a suitable way. Basic good practice includes making sure children arrive on time; teachers can see their classes and can also be seen as a model for good behavior, and designating a member of staff to deal with any possible distractions.

Getting Messages Across

Educational entertainment at school shows can cover a vast number of topics. They can range from school subjects like math or writing, to social topics such as anti-bullying and extra-curricular themes like wild life, clowns and robots. But in all these cases, children should find something useful that they can take away with them when each school assembly finishes. How much they remember and internalize a point being made depends a lot on the way the point is made and the degree to which they participate. Running workshops for children in individual classes after a school assembly is also a good way to reinforce learning, particularly as it increases the possibility for each child to participate.

Puppets as a Plank in the Learning Platform

Because of the importance of the way education is presented as well as its content, the more engaging a school assembly program can be, the better. Puppets have a special capability of capturing children’s attention. When puppets talk, children listen. Their imagination has the power of making many otherwise inanimate things seem real. Conversely, puppets allow performers to focus on particular aspects and messages that might otherwise be lost in the complexity of a real life’ presentation. They also help boost participation as children respond readily to invitations to join in the fun. So when planning your next school assembly program and educational entertainment, consider making the puppet show part of the fun and learning too.

© 2015 Happy Bright Kids

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