Learners recognize that famous philanthropists started with small acts of kindness before they performed the influential acts that we remember them for. Students define caring through discussion of examples and writing an acrostic.
One 20-minute lesson
The learner will:
This character education mini-lesson is not intended to be a service learning lesson or to meet the K-12 Service-Learning Standards for Quality Practice. The character education units will be most effective when taught in conjunction with a student-designed service project that provides a real world setting in which students can develop and practice good character and leadership skills. For ideas and suggestions for organizing service events go to generationon.org.
Write a list of varied and famous American historical figures/philanthropists on the board and ask learners, “What do these people have in common?” Examples may include local philanthropists as well as some of the following: Clara Driscoll, Ima Hogg, Olga Bernstein Kohlberg, Jane McCallum, Caesar Chavez, Andrew Carnegie, Eleanor Roosevelt, Jimmy Carter, Jane Addams, Squanto, Clara Barton, W. E. B. Dubois, Susan B. Anthony, Dorothea Dix, Harriet Tubman, Booker T. Washington, Rachel Carson, and George Washington Carver. Discuss the traits that all of the peoples' names written on the board share (all were/are philanthropists and community-minded, caring individuals) and why we remember them for their positive contributions to the common good.
C-concern for others
A-always showing kindness
R-reaching out to others
N-noticing needs of others
G-giving and sharing
Excerpts taken from Learning to Give lesson, "What Is a Philanthropist and Why Do We Care?" http://www.learningtogive.org/lessons/unit186/lesson1.html
Students bring home a "Perform Random Acts of Kindness" bookmark. They ask their families for ideas of simple acts of kindness they can perform. They write a list of ideas on the back of the bookmark and bring the bookmark to the next class period.
Lead the students to recognize that kind acts may spark others to perform kind acts. This is known as serial reciprocity. Define serial reciprocity as "the process occurring when one person gives to another, by means of time, talent or treasure, and thus causes a continual chain of giving to occur in a linear rather than circular pattern."
Lesson Developed By:Betsy Flikkema
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