Ex-civil servant turned secondary teacher Rufus Ravenscroft, aka ruforufus, talks about the unique opportunity assemblies present and how his resources can help you to make the most of them.
Tell us about your education and background
I did a politics degree and then worked in the civil service for a while before leaving to become a secondary school teacher – a role I’ve been in for the last ten years. I started volunteering for assemblies as I felt there were important messages pupils needed to know that were not part of the curriculum. For me it’s one of the highlights of the job.
What resources do you produce and why?
I produce ready made school assemblies. In addition to slides, I include a full script and YouTube videos of the presentation. The video enables teachers to quickly see if the talk will work for their audience. The PowerPoints contain pictures that illustrate the points being made and help maintain pupils’ interest. They also make the talks easier to deliver by acting as a prompt for the speaker; not sure what you need to say next? Just look at the board behind you!
I feel assemblies are a unique opportunity to communicate key messages to a younger generation in a world where there’s so much competition for their attention. What other medium will give you the undivided attention of nearly every child in the country for 10-15 minutes a week? The time pressure placed on staff delivering assemblies means that there’s a great need for high quality ready made resources.
Which talk are you most proud of?
So far I’ve produced six talks and I’m proud of them all, but I feel my best assembly is the one on understanding and using your willpower. Most recently I’ve done a talk on the Rule of Law which I plan to add to a bundle of talks on British Values. I’m hoping that this becomes my best work, not least because finally I’ll be putting my politcs degree to good use!