Character Building Activities for High School Students

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

Character building helps students become better citizens both at school and in their community. The activities in this asset support character building with high school students.

Character Building

As students prepare for their life beyond high school, teachers can impact their future success by helping them build character. The following activities help high school students build character and develop socially as they learn etiquette, examine social media behavior, volunteer in their community, and explore realistic ethical dilemmas.

Host a Luncheon

Students will learn proper etiquette as they host a luncheon for members of the community.


  • table settings
  • lunch
  • invitations


  • Brainstorm a list of volunteers and community members that have made positive contributions to the school or to individual members of the class.
  • Have students create and mail formal invitations to a luncheon in honor of these citizens.
  • Have students research and set proper place settings for a formal meal.
  • Discuss etiquette and attire for a business lunch.
  • Have students work in small groups to brainstorm appropriate topics of conversation and discuss formal versus informal language. Encourage students to include topics related to citizenship and volunteerism.
  • Have students host a networking lunch for the members of the community.

Social Media Behavior

Students will examine social media behavior and how it might be perceived by different members of the community.


  • log sheet
  • sets of index cards (1 per group) that identify the following roles: college admissions director, potential employer, future in-laws, grandparents/parents, church/school leader, peer


  • Have students gather data on a log sheet related to dates/times/examples of negative comments and behaviors on social media. Students should not include names or identifying information about other students.
  • Divide students into small groups. Assign each person in the group a role using index cards.
  • Have students select one of the behaviors recorded on one of their log sheets to discuss from the perspective of their role.
  • Repeat the process as time allows using different behaviors and switching roles.
  • Have a class discussion about the appropriateness of different types of posts and potential consequences of inappropriate posts.

Community Service

Students will experience volunteerism first hand by contributing to their community.


  • computer/internet/printer

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