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Sunday, April 17, 2011

School Assembly

Imagine 458 kids along with 30 + adults singing and dancing in an auditorium! All in sync - all in tune! Well, this past Friday, that was OUR school.

Every other week our elementary school gathers together in the auditorium and is treated to a whole school assembly presented by a different class or two.

Assemblies this year included a tribute to family veterans; a choral reading about the Pilgrims; a class role playing promoting bullying prevention; a class sharing their family heritage and more.

By far there are some whole school assemblies that become 'Boyden' Traditions! Two of those assemblies happened to occur in the same week!

Dressed in their best cowboy attire, our annual 'Hoe Down' is held in the gymnasium and shows off the new dancing skills of the fourth grade students.  The Virginia Reel, Cotton-Eyed Joe and other dances were featured as part of the culminating unit on 'Pioneers'.  Each fourth grade class demonstrates one of the dances they learned while the rest of the school waits in anticipation for a chance to be chosen to dance with a fourth grade buddy.  Dance after dance, smile after smile, students are learning first hand about American Culture while having fun!

On the Friday before the spring break it's our Kindergarten students' chance to perform on stage.  They sing, gesture and dance to  Tony Chestnut while the rest of the school wiggles and whispers along with them. When the song is finished a thunderous applause can be heard in the audience.  Kinder faces beam with pride.  Our principal then invites all in the auditorium to stand and participate.  There is nothing quite so powerful (and fun) as being in a room filled with students and staff singing and dancing together.  It's truly heartwarming.

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For our students assemblies provide a way to showcase their work, either individually or as a group.  Speaking in front of others and being on stage are important as this will help students build confidence with their communication skills.    

For students in the audience, assemblies provide a way for them to learn HOW to be a part of an audience and how to show appreciation by applauding appropriately (not hooting and hollering).  Learning to sit quietly and listening attentively are other benefits of being an audience member.

Boyden School is proud of their students and their school assemblies.

Does your school have students presenting at whole school assemblies? 


  1. Oh, for northern schools! They have gyms! Florida elementary schools
    don't have any place to gather the whole student body except outside.
    Sounds so nice how each class has presentations to the rest of the student body. Great fun and camaraderie! Wow, they get to do something else than"teach to the test".

  2. Nice, Nancy! The assemblies you do at Boyden sound great. In our grade 7-12 school, we don't do that, but I could imagine doing more sharing between 7th and 8th graders. I share digital work on our blog, so they look at each others' through the blog. We also have a speech contest, which every junior higher participates in. However, some live more opportunities for live presentations would be great practice for them, and let them share their genius with the others.

    You must be proud!

  3. Hi Denise,
    We do a lot of sharing in our class from show & tell to presentations. It's amazing how comfortable the kids feel speaking in front of one another.
    When I was young, I remember I had to recite something in 7th grade and I kept being absent when it was my turn - finally the teacher gave up. I though I won - when actually, I didn't. Now that I am a teacher I am fairly comfortable speaking in public (with the little ones it's easier).
    It's an important part of schooling.
    Glad to know that you are helping those 7 & 8th graders with this. Those are the years that I think it is most tough as the kids are really self conscious.
    As always Denise, thanks for sharing your thoughtful comments!

  4. Hi Nancy;

    I didn't know that kids could have that much fun going to school. What a great way to learn and communicate with the rest of the kids in school. I imagine it's a lot of work to be able to co-ordinate the singing and dancing.
    Great work.


  5. Excellent, especially in a world so full of technology. How much fun learning to work together and having fun doing it! For some reason, I thought this was a thing of the past. Glad to hear it's still alive and well! I still remember my role in "Three Billy Goats Gruff" ... I would guess that would be close to 50 years ago. WOW! You teachers really DO make a difference! Great post!

  6. @ Milo and @ Carol-Ann I daresay that these are what the children will remember most about their school days. How could you ever forget being on the stage in front of a whole school? It is a great way to communicate and alleviate those fears of speaking in front of others.

    Thanks for reading and commenting!


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