Aimee has a Master's degree in Special Education from Arizona State University and currently teaches at the Secondary level.
After this lesson, students will be able to:
- generate compliments to give to their peers
- accept compliments from their peers
This lesson should take 45-60 minutes.
- Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 4 topics and texts, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.
- Ball of yarn
- Paper and pencils
Lesson and Discussion
- Open the class by giving each student a personalized and specific compliment. At this point, do not direct students' response to the compliment; some may say, ''Thank you,'' while others may shy away.
- Next, provide students with a pen and pencil and ask them how it felt to be given the compliment. For younger students, allow them to draw and explain. Older students may write 2-3 sentences.
- Allow students to volunteer to share out how receiving the compliments made them feel.
- Discuss with students that receiving and giving compliments is meant to be a good and positive way to interact with others. Explain that compliments are more than comments about physical appearance or material possessions (for example, ''I like your hair,'' or, ''You have nice shoes''). The best and most meaningful compliments are those that focus on a person's personality or actions (for example, ''I like how kind you were to the new student,'' or, ''I admired your creativity in the group project'').
- Take some time to explore the idea that receiving compliments can be uncomfortable for some people. Explain to students that it is best to respond with a simple, ''Thank you,'' or a smile, if you're feeling shy.
- Drawing off of the previous discussion, ask students to think in their heads about a compliment that they would give to someone that they interacted with that day. For example, students may think of a compliment to give their parent, a sibling, or a teacher.
- Have the students discuss with a partner the compliment that they would give to that person.
- Ask students to share out their stories and the compliments that they would give. Encourage students to give that compliment later in the day!
1. Explain to students that they will be playing an interactive game that involves complimenting and receiving compliments.
- Note: Remind students that their interactions should remain consistently respectful and that all students in the group should receive one compliment.
2. Begin by giving the ball of yarn to a student. Ask that student to hold onto the loose end of the string, pick a peer, give a compliment, and toss the ball to that student.
3. The receiving student should appropriately respond to the compliment by saying, ''Thank you,'' or by giving the complimenter a smile.
4. That student then selects another peer, compliments him or her, and tosses the ball of yarn to another student, keeping hold of one piece before tossing.
5. The process continues until all students have been given a compliment; the final person to receive a compliment should be the teacher, so that no student is the ''last one.''
6. While all students are still holding their yarn in a ''web'' form, discuss with students that the kindness of sincere compliments can bring us closer together and help to build a strong community.
- Ask students to generate compliments for a character in a favorite classroom story.
- Have a small group of students perform skits in which individuals exhibit behavior worth complimenting while the other students give compliments to the skit performers.
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