The Role of Prayer and Collective Worship
in the Recovery Curriculum
As we begin the start of the new school year, I would like to wish you all the very best on behalf of the Ten Ten team as you embark into uncharted waters. I appreciate that you have many challenges ahead of you and, in our own way, we want to support you and be here for you.
You may have heard of the ‘recovery curriculum’ – an acknowledgement of the trauma that children have faced over recent months and a strategy to prepare for recovery. In this article, Barry Carpenter, Professor of Mental Health in Education at Oxford Brookes University, discusses the five losses that children will have experienced during the pandemic lockdown: loss of routine, structure, friendship, opportunity, and freedom – and he proposes some strategies that schools can adopt to help their children cope with the return to school after experiencing such bereavement.
Understandably, schools might have an impulse to ‘catch up’ on curriculum studies as quickly as possible but we must also be mindful of the value and importance of relationships. After all, school is first and foremost an education in relationships and as such the ‘recovery curriculum’ talks about the ‘unwritten relationships curriculum’ which is at the heart of our schools.
For Catholic schools, prayer and collective worship play a really important part of this recovery. The very foundation of our schools is built upon relationship with our Father in heaven, who gives life, meaning and purpose to our relationships with others. Reconnecting with this relationship with our heavenly Father, both individually and communally, should be a priority for us as we re-engage our children in school. It provides for us an unchanging foundation on which life itself exists.
To this end, Ten Ten is pleased to be working in partnership with so many primary schools by providing collective worship resources. Mindful that opportunities for whole school collective worship are likely to be diminished for some time, we have made our assembly resources available to be led in the classroom. To support class teachers who may not have led these assemblies previously, we’ve produced a short video tutorial so class teachers can learn quickly how to lead these ‘Gospel assemblies’ if that is the way you plan to do things.
Our daily classroom prayers have also returned, and we hope schools will make full use of these.
We have also recently reviewed our weekly staffroom prayers, and they are now being offered as a simple but reflective video resource, accessible to all.
Finally, building on our ‘prayers for home’ resources that we released during school closures earlier this year, we have now released our monthly parent newsletter as an online resource, providing more opportunities for parents and carers to make use of the creative resources.
If there are other ways we can support you in the coming weeks and months, please do share your thoughts with us. For now, be assured of our prayers and best wishes for the coming year.
Ten Ten Resources