How might individuals and society address the issues of poverty, homelessness and hunger, and their underlying causes?
NOTE: Prior to this lesson, use the Blue Sky Activity in which students envision a better world. If you already have a Blue Sky display, revisit it before beginning this lesson.
This lesson introduces the students to concepts about homelessness, hunger and philanthropy. The students will listen to a story about a Chinese boy who chooses to give his precious four dollars (“lucky money”) to a homeless man, setting the tone for initial discussions about selflessness, and ways to address hunger, and poverty.
One Forty-Five Minute Class Period
The learner will:
- define homeless as not having a dwelling or structure in which to live in.
- understand that some people don’t have enough food to eat.
- understand the concept of opportunity cost.
As the students enter the room, have each child respond to the following question by placing a mark on a graph.
Teacher Note: The sample below could be drawn on the board, or put on chart paper before students enter.
Did you have a snack before you went to bed last night?
Student number 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Yes No
- Discuss the student responses on the graph. Allow several students to tell what they had for a snack, where they ate it and who ate with them. Reflect on how they would have felt if they were not able to have a snack when they were hungry.
- Ask students to share a time when they were really hungry. What did they do about it? Be very sensitive to children who may be hungry or even homeless. Ask the students to imagine feeling hungry every night or wondering if there would even be enough food at home for supper.
- Remind the students that a philanthropist is someone who helps others even though he or she has to give something up for him or herself. Give some examples of philanthropy, such as giving food or clothing to someone who is hungry or cold. Tell them that you are going to read aloud a story about a boy who helps a man who not only was hungry but also had no place to live. Ask questions to stimulate their thinking, Where do you think he lived? Where did he get his food?
- Read the book, Sam and the Lucky Money.
- Ask if anyone can tell you why Sam was a philanthropist and what he gave up by giving to the homeless man (opportunity cost). Discuss the benefits of giving for the giver and receiver.
- Possible discussion questions:
Observe participation in class discussion and center activities.
"Understanding Childhood Hunger." Sharing Our Strength http://www.strength.org/childhood_hunger/
Lesson Developed By:Michal Smith
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