Character Lessons

Santiago High School - Be a SHARK

Happy Shark Challenge COVID-19 Edition

Complete the Happy Shark Challenge COVID-19 Edition and post your challenge on any social media platform using #SantiagoCOVID19. Stay positive and stay safe!

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30 Days of Kindness from Character Strong

Starting on Monday, March 16th Character Strong will be releasing one Kindness practice a day. On this page, you can download a journal page, a socially shareable image, and watch the daily video. Tag your posts with #deepkindness!

CNUSD CoronaVirus Update

CLICK HERE for up to date information about COVID-19 from the district office. Additionally, you will find a link to academic enrichment opportunities.

Hardwiring happiness: Dr. Rick Hanson at TEDxMarin 2013

Instructions:

  • Watch this 13 minute video and take notes on “aha moments” for you. “Aha moments” are things that you relate to…an example he gives reminds you of yourself or an experience you had or someone you know experienced. It can also mean something you just learned and now you really get it.
  • Write down 3 “Aha Moments” you garnered (took away, learned) from Rick’s presentation.
  • Now…really think about it…when you have an aha moment, it means you are really paying attention…really focusing. This is being MINDFUL right? This is being in the MOMENT right?


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

8 traits of successful people - Richard St. John

Instructions:

  • Watch the Ted Talk video.
  • As you watch it, take notes and record new learnings you discovered.
  • List the 8 Traits of Successful people (according to Richard St. John)
  • Make a poster showing the various traits.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and pay attention to your emotions
  • Justify whether doing things for others can make you happy.
  • According to this video, how does an act of kindness spread happiness?


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Grocery store buys special cart for special kid

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and answer the following:
  • How is happiness and compassion being studied by scientists
  • What is an important message in the video?


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Kindness Scientist

Instructions:

  • After watching the video and thinking about your own practice of being more mindful in your everyday activities,.
  • Develop a one-day plan that you will use to be more mindful tomorrow. Include each hour of the day and a step you will take for each activity to increase your “mindfulness” in all things you do.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Mindfulness: Youth Voices

Instructions:

  • Listen to the song in the video below.
  • Identify who would you like to thank in your life thus far for giving you…providing you some great days in your life? (grandma, parent, coach, friend, cousin…?)
  • Write it down. Decorate it. Take a photo of it. Share it with them.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Dido - Thank you Lyrics

Instructions:

  • Watch the video
  • Write a letter to someone important to you – someone you are truly thankful to have in your life.
  • If possible, read the letter or mail the letter to that person.
  • How did it make you feel to share your gratitude with others?


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

What Teens Are Thankful For | The Science of Happiness

Instructions:

  • Watch the video My Gratitude Jar (https://youtu.be/6TYvJh5Cwvw)
  • Make a list of three things you are thankful for right now.
  • Repeat this activity every day for the next few fews.
  • Read through the list every few days. How does it make you feel?


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and list three things you learned.
  • Make a poster that shows the affects of gratitude.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

The Amazing Effects of Gratitude

Instructions:

  • Watch the video
  • List three things you learned from the video.
  • Think of a person you are really thankful for right now. Call them and tell them how you feel.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

An Experiment in Gratitude | The Science of Happiness

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and notice your emotions.
  • How did it feel to do the exercise?
  • When could you use this practice?
  • Teach this exercise to someone in your family or someone you know. Describe the experience in 5-8 sentences.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

15/21 Days of Mindfulness Bootcamp - 5 Minutes Bodyscan Meditation for Families and classrooms

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and answer the questions below:
  • What can you do about your attention getting hijacked?
  • What are the weapons out there for you?(cell phone? friends, thought of the past that are out of your control? what else?)
  • How can mindfulness help you with your attention?
  • Write a letter of commitment to yourself about what you have learned about mindfulness and how you plan to use it in your life.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Hacking Mindfulness: Learning to Pay Attention to Your Own Attention, with Peter Baumann

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and practice the hand model of the brain
  • Demonstrate the hand model to someone at home
  • Explain what it means to “flip your lip” and what you can do to help yourself when you experience strong emotions like disappointment, anger, etc.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Dr Daniel Siegel presenting a Hand Model of the Brain

Instructions:

  • Watch this short video carefully and take notes on the change possible in the brain’s gray matter.
  • Watch the video again and devise an “elevator speech” on the benefits of Mindfulness. You can be funny, serious, but always factual (like Dan). An “elevator speech” is a one-minute description…something you could teach in a super short amount of time to someone who has never heard of your topic before. As you probably know, mindfulness is a new idea to many people.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Dan Harris: Hack Your Brain's Default Mode with Meditation | Big Think

Instructions:

  • Watch the video
  • Do you think imagination is important? What do you imagine your adult life to be like? If you had courage and a growth mindset what do you think is possible?
  • Describe your dream if you could do anything on the planet.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Goal Setting Growth Mindset

Instructions:

  • Watch the video. The doctor told this man when he was younger that he had a brain condition that would keep his hand shaking no matter what..so he embraced the shake and became an artist.
  • Describe his mindset. Is it fixed? Is it growth?
  • What have you learned from this video?
  • What can you embrace about yourself and turn it into something positive? Write a one page explanation. Be personal. Be creative.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Embrace the Shake | Phil Hansen | TED Talks

Instructions:

  • Watch the video.
  • If you were going to show this video to a child under the age of 10 (sibling, friend, or neighbor) who would you show/share it with?
  • How would you describe the Power of YET to your parents?Remember that when you teach someone something…you learn it better yourself. Make a plan to tell your parents or caregivers tonight about the Power of YET.
  • What was your parents’ reaction?
  • How did you feel teaching the Power of Yet to another person? Explain.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Sesame Street: Janelle Monae - Power of Yet

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and take a few notes.
  • What specific things have you told yourself that you could not do? Rephrase your thinking and list 4 new statements ending with “yet.”
  • Examples: I cannot do math, yet. I am just not a person who can ride a bike, yet.
  • Make small signs with each Power of Yet statement and put them around your room.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Carol Dweck on the power of "Yet"

Instructions:

  • Watch the video
  • Identify three disadvantages of a fixed mindset
  • Identify three advantages of a growth mindset
  • Give one example of when you demonstrated a fixed mindset. A growth mindset.
  • List three things you can do to switch to a growth mindset.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Growth Mindset vs Fixed Mindset: An Introduction

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and notice your emotions.
  • Draw a large circle on your paper and inside the circle record all the emotions you believe are expressed in this video from start to finish. You may want to first search for emotion words first so you have a bank to choose from. Go on line and find a giant list of ‘words that express emotions.
  • Determine one positive gesture that you could implement at your school or in your home to improve positivity amongst people.
  • Develop a plan to carry this out…days, times, activities.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Josh - opening doors and hearts | WestJet Above and Beyond Stories

Instructions:

  • Watch the video above and take notes.
  • What is one thing you learned from the video?
  • What is one thing you will use from the video?


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Leading with Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and answer the following:
  • What is the difference between the thinking brain and the feeling brain? Cite evidence from the video. You may want to watch this video several times to complete the assignment.
  • Extend your thinking – share an experience where your feeling brain dominated your thinking brain. What was the outcome?


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Emotions and the Brain

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and take notes on the information.
  • What is something surprising that you learned?
  • How will you use this information in the future?


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Science of the Heart


Instructions:



  • Self-awareness begins with being aware of the present moment. Watch the video above and take a 15 minute break to practice your mindfulness skills
  • Attempt to keep your eyes closed and truly focus on just your breath and notice sounds as the narrator speaks. It is ideal to practice quiet Mindfulness sitting every day to decrease stress, increase gray matter in your brain, and develop a pause in your life when making decisions.
  • In this video the narrator will ask you often to let go of past and future thoughts…to just be in this moment.
  • Practice this exercise throughout the week.



This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Mindfulness Meditation - Quick 15 Min Stress Relief Version

Instructions:

  • After watching the video, answer the questions below:
  • What do you think about the police department using this as a break and then going back to work?
  • How do you think this helps police officers in their job?
  • What makes you feel stress, or frustration and anger?
  • Where could you go when you’re at home to breathe and relax after a stressful situation?


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Meditation at the Detroit Police Department

Instructions:

  • Click on the link above and follow the narrator’s instructions. She will guide your through a mindfulness exercise. Complete this is a quiet place.
  • How did you feel through the guided mindfulness?
  • Practice this several times this week.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

MindfulnessForStudents

Three minutes breathing space by MindfulnessForStudents

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and follow the instructions. Then answer the following:
  • Identify your experience being completely still. Was it easy? Difficult? Summarize any emotions or experiences you felt.
  • Have you ever done quiet sitting before? Describe that experience.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Simple Meditation

Instructions:

  • What the video and write a paragraph explaining how meditation changes the brain.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

How Does Meditation Change the Brain? - Instant Egghead #54

Instructions:

  • Watch the video and answer the questions below:
  • Think of someone you know with a growth mindset. What is their name?
  • What have they done or accomplished that remind you that they DO have a growth mindset/
  • What do you think got them to this point of success in how they handle challenges?


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Growth Mindset Video

Instructions:

  • After watching the video, answer the questions below:
  • How is my teen brain designed?
  • How is my brain different from children or adults?
  • What changes happen to my brain during my teens?
  • How does my brain push me to actions?
  • How do I harness the power of my brain?


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

The Teenage Brain Explained
CLICK HERE for a collection of fun games that help build kids’ executive functioning skills, like focus and memory

Instructions:

  • What have you learned about how a child’s brain is developed?
  • Write a 4-5 sentence paragraph or draw a picture about how a child’s brain is developed.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

How Brains are Built: The Core Story of Brain Development

A Comic Exploring The New Coronavirus


Kids, this comic is for you. It's based on a radio story that NPR education reporter Cory Turner did. He asked some experts what kids might want to know about the new coronavirus discovered in China.


To make this comic, we've used his interviews with Tara Powell at the University of Illinois School of Social Work, Joy Osofsky at the LSU Health Sciences Center in New Orleans and Krystal Lewis at the National Institute of Mental Health.


CLICK HERE to be redirected to this lesson by NPR.

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Instructions:

  • After watching this video, what additional questions do you have about the brain or something said in the presentation. Write no less than three questions.
  • Define the following words: neuroplasticity, dendrites, synapses, neurons, axons, brain cells, synaptic pruning, memory


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Your Brain is Plastic
In this resource, you’ll find simple mindset shifts that families can use at home. Parents don’t need to take a deep dive into the benefits of a growth mindset. Instead, these simple phrase adjustments can help families encourage a growth mindset without understanding the science behind it. What they will notice, though, is the impact these phrases have on their students as they navigate the challenges of remote learning.


Lesson developed by Move This World

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Growth Mindset | Kate Salembier | TEDxYouth@MJS


Instructions:

  • After watching the video below, consider a time when you rewired your brain. You may not have known it at the time, but you now know that it it is possible to go from non-learner to learner.
  • List 5 activities you have mastered since you were born. (Hint: reading)
  • List 5 new activities you would like to master.
  • Make a poster illustrating both.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.

Neuroplasticity 1)
Multiple Intelligences helps you identify your potential in a variety of areas. Taking this assessment can help you recognize areas of strength and explore recommended careers.


To access Multiple Intelligence Assessment:

  1. Sign in to your California Colleges account.
  2. Hover on Career
  3. Click on Multiple Intelligences
  4. Take the assessment
  5. Review your results

Note: you can only take this assessment a maximum of three times. For this reason, we recommend that you take this assessment no more than once per year. Take your time and answer the questions honestly each time!


How much time does Multiple Intelligences take?

Multiple Intelligences will take approximately 30 minutes to complete. If students are signed in, they may start and stop as they wish. Their progress will be saved, and they will be able to resume where they left off. Please note that students can only take this assessment a maximum of three times. For this reason, we recommend that students take this assessment no more than once per year. Additionally, it is our recommendation that you encourage your students to be thoughtful and intentional in each attempt.


What does the Multiple Intelligences do?

Multiple Intelligences is a 54-item assessment that provides a more rounded view of students by looking at the following types of intelligence: bodily-kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal, linguistic, logical- mathematical, musical, naturalist, spatial, and existential.


What do the results show?

Upon completion of Multiple Intelligences, students’ results are scored, and they receive an instant, personalized report based on their responses to the questions. The report contains a visual bar graph illustrating their Multiple Intelligence profile. It also lists traits from their top-ranked intelligences, provides a list of careers that match their profile, and offers comprehensive details on each of their intelligence areas, along with suggested strategies for further developing their intelligences.


What are some next steps after completing Multiple Intelligences?

After students have identified their top natural intelligences, they can identify vocational or enrichment interests, create a Journal entry reflecting on their strengths, create a Goal entry, or use this information to guide them in their Career Search.


Three months into 2020 and it’s evident that this year will be one like no other. Across the globe, fears of the novel coronavirus are spreading quicker than the virus itself. Businesses are closing, borders are firming up, thousands are panic buying, and most of us are being informed to self-isolate. If you’re feeling anxiety, insecurity, and fear at this time, it’s entirely understandable.


However, amidst the very real danger that the coronavirus poses to many, the fear that we are experiencing in both mind and body is doing little for our health and vitality. The fear response, which is certainly beneficial when we’re up against imminent danger, is now in overdrive for many. With a flood of worrisome information and opinions being posted throughout news sources and social media, it is hard to find the peace and ease we deeply yearn for.


Mindfulness Tips for Dealing with COVID-19 and Managing Coronavirus-Related Stress

  1. Be mindful of time spent reading news and scanning social media.
  2. Consider ways of supporting your community connection.
  3. Self-inquire: What opportunities might this time be presenting?


8 Mindfulness Exercises for a Healthy Coronavirus Mindset

  1. Belly Breathing
  2. Body Scan Meditation
  3. Gladdening the Mind
  4. Relaxing Sleep Music
  5. Equanimity: Finding Balance in Difficult Times
  6. How to Feel Balanced
  7. Mindfulness of Emotions
  8. Loving Kindness Meditation


CLICK HERE for activities and more information from Mindfulness Exercises.

News of the coronavirus COVID-19 is everywhere, from the front page of all the papers to the playground at school. Many parents are wondering how to bring up the epidemic in a way that will be reassuring and not make kids more worried than they already may be.


CLICK HERE for some advice from the experts at the Child Mind Institute.

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CLICK HERE for lesson.


OBJECTIVES:

  • Students will examine and determine their personal values.
  • Students will make decisions based on their values.
  • Students will practice resisting pressure to make decisions that are not in line with their personal values.


RESOURCES NEEDED:

  • Top 10 Activity Sheet (located on page 44 in this LINK)

CLICK HERE for lesson.


OBJECTIVES:

  • Students will develop an understanding of power.
  • Students will identify the forms that power can take.
  • Students will identify the power of personal responsibility.

Pick Six is a writing exercise where we will create personal memoirs that are six words long. Memoirs are helpful because they give us a chance to reflect on our experiences and strengths. Through this process we will be more prepared to make realistic plans and goals for the future.


How to prepare for Pick Six in your classroom:

  • You can complete this exercise by sitting at a desk
  • You will need a piece of paper and a pen/pencil


Next level student prompts:

  • Think about people, real or fictional, that inspire you. What about them inspires you?
  • Draw a representation of your six word memoir. Date and sign your drawing. Hold onto your drawing until the end of the school year. At the end of the year, reflect on the milestones you have reached between the time you drew your representation and now. How have you grown as a person?

Lesson 15: Worried?

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5 things you can do to reboot your brain.
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READ THE FOLLOWING STORIES: (links to the stories can be found HERE)
  • Someone Who Understands
  • The Art of Sharing
  • What's Prettier Than Freckles


EMPATHY FORMULA
E = eye contact
M = movement
P = posture
A = affect or expressed emotions
T = tone of voice
H = hearing the whole person without judgment
Y = your response


BRAINSTORM REAL ISSUES

Write out a list of struggles that people might be going through; this can be a family pet that has just passed, a grandparent who is sick, a bad grade in class, someone who is struggling with a particular friendship, being stressed out about an exam, etc.


GIVE A MESSAGE OF KINDNESS

Write down a name of someone you know who has been struggling or maybe just needs a little kindness done for them. Write a note or draw a picture for the person you wrote down. Then give your message of kindness to that person as soon as it is possible.

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GETTING STARTED:
  1. CLICK HERE to access the worksheet.
  2. Make a copy of this document by following these steps: (a) file, (b) make a copy
  3. Complete the Career Interest Profiler Worksheet


DIRECTIONS:

  1. CLICK HERE
  2. Click on the purple start button where it says "Tell us what you like to do."
  3. Read the directions for the O*NET Interest Profiler. Then click on NEXT.
  4. Read how it works then click NEXT.
  5. Go through the 5 screens of questions totaling 60 questions. Then read your results.
  6. When completed, you can choose to go back to review your questions or go back to review unsure answers. Otherwise, click NEXT.
  7. Read about the various Job ZOnes and select one.
  8. Browse through the career matches and complete the Career Interest Profiler Worksheet.

Lesson 11: Self Care

The term self-care refers to activities and practices that we can engage in on a regular basis to reduce stress and maintain and enhance our short- and longer-term health and well-being. Self-care is also necessary for you to be effective and successful in honoring your professional and personal commitments.


CLICK HERE for Self-Care Tips for High School Students


CLICK HERE for 134 Activities to Add to Your Self-Care Plan


Thank you to our friends at Collaborative Learning Solutions for the infographic.
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Quick Self-Care Tips for Middle & High School Students - 2020 (Actionable!)
CLICK HERE to be directed to Common Sense Education webpage for more information on this topic.


Social media plays a big role in most teens' lives, and research shows that it causes intense feelings -- both positive and negative. But not all media use is the same. There are many benefits that come with both active and passive media use. For better social and emotional well-being, encourage students to become creators of digital media, not just consumers.


Lesson Slides: CLICK HERE


Student Handout: CLICK HERE


Family Activity: CLICK HERE

Is Social Media Hurting Your Mental Health? | Bailey Parnell | TEDxRyersonU
Telephone Game with Body Language

Good communication is important to getting along well with others, but children often have difficulty understanding that their body language and facial expressions can affect how their words are interpreted.


Pre-Discussion:

Tell the group that they will be playing a game called “telephone” in two different ways. The first time they play, they will communicate by speaking. Then they will communicate using only their body language and facial expressions.


Mini Game Directions:

  1. For the verbal game of telephone, have students line up next to each other. In the first round, whisper a phrase of your choice to the first student. Each student should then whisper the phrase that she heard to the student next to her, until it reaches the last student. The last student should then say the message aloud, and see if it matches the original.
  2. Play the game this way for a few rounds, letting students pick the phrase and having students switch places in the line in between rounds.
  3. Explain to students that they will now play a similar game, but instead of passing a verbal phrase down the line, they will try to pass a body language expression.
  4. Have students line up so that they are all facing one way. Tap the first student on the shoulder, and when he turns around, express an emotion with only body language, such as arms crossed and an angry face. This student should then tap the person in front of him on the shoulder and do his best to imitate the body language. Remind students that they should not turn around until they are tapped on the shoulder. Continue until the last student in the line sees the body language, and have her demonstrate what she saw to the class.
  5. Play the body language version for a few rounds, letting students choose the initial body language expression and having students switch places in line in between rounds. Remind students that their body language should express an emotion, like sadness, surprise, disgust, fear, etc., not just a silly pose.


Post-Discussion:

Once you’ve played a few rounds of verbal telephone and body language telephone, bring the group back together for a discussion. The main goal of this lesson is for students to recognize that we communicate both with our words and with our bodies, so we need to be aware of both while we are trying to convey a message. Ask students what they thought about both versions of the game, and try to guide them to this point.

Effective Communication Skills for Youth

Lesson 8: Respect

Discovering Your Character: Respect

Lesson 7: Stop Making Excuses & Own Your Actions

How to be a Responsible Person


When you agree to do something, do it. If you let people down, they’ll stop believing you. When you follow through on your commitments, people take you seriously.


Answer for your own actions. Don’t make excuses or blame others for what you do. When you take responsibility for your actions you are saying “I am the one who’s in charge of my life.”


Take care of your own matters. Don’t rely on adults to remind you when you’re supposed to be somewhere or what you’re supposed to bring. You take the responsibility.


Be trustworthy. If somebody trusts you to borrow or take care of something, take care of it. If somebody tells you something in confidence, keep it to yourself. It’s important for people to know they can count on you.


Always use your head. Think things through and use good judgment. When you use your head you make better choices. That shows your parents they can trust you.


Don’t put things off. When you have a job to do, do it. Doing things on time helps you take control of your life and shows that you can manage your own affairs.


REFLECTION:

  1. What does it mean when someone is described as a “responsible” person?
  2. What are some of the responsibilities you currently have (at home, at school, in the community)?
  3. Are there some reasons why you might want to be considered a “responsible” person?
Stop Making Excuses & Own Your Actions

Lesson 6: Responsibility

Think of a time in the future when you will need to show responsibility in order to be safe and gain others' trust (examples: getting a drivers' license, applying to college, taking exams).


Think about the issues currently being discussed and think of their potential positive outcomes and also the related consequences. Reflect on one of the following:


REFLECTION CHOICES:

  • A circumstance from your own experience where you did or didn't take responsibility and its benefits or consequences.

  • A future circumstance when you'll need to be responsible and its benefits or consequences.

AMAZING KIDS OF CHARACTER: RESPONSIBILITY (Accessible Preview)

Lesson 5: Through the Eyes of Someone Else

It's been said that "It's hard to hate someone when you know their story."


Oftentimes, it is difficult to know what is really happening in someone's lives to cause them to act the way that they do.


What is Empathy? (Resource: Psychology Today)

Empathy is the visceral experience of another person's thoughts and feelings from his or her point of view, rather than from one's own. Empathy facilitates prosocial or helping behaviors that come from within, rather than being forced, so that people behave in a more compassionate manner. Empathy stands in contrast to sympathy which is the ability to cognitively understand a person's point of view or experience, without the emotional overlay. It should also be distinguished from compassion, even though the terms are often used interchangeably. Compassion is an empathic understanding of a person's feelings plus a desire to act on that person's behalf.


Neuroscientists have advanced the concept of "mirror neurons," which are believed to enhance the capacity to display, read, and mimic emotional signals through facial expressions and other forms of body language. Mirror neurons are sometimes said to help individuals share emotional experiences and become more empathic toward others.


Assignment:

Watch the video Under the Surface and then respond to these questions.


  1. If you were in the video, what would be the words that were above your head? In other words, what is something currently happening in your life that most people might not know about?

  2. Describe a time when you were dealing with something difficult and someone showed you kindness or did something nice for you. How did that affect you?

  3. Is it possible to dislike the way someone acts, but to have empathy for them? Please explain your answer. Remember, empathy is when you put yourself in someone else's shoes and try to understand how they feel or see the world from their perspective.

"Under The Surface" - Empathy Film

Lesson 4: Growth Mindset

What is a Growth Mindset?


In order to learn new things, like Math, a musical instrument, a trick on a skateboard, making a basket, running a faster time, not having your phone out while you are eating dinner or talking to someone you care about requires having a Growth Mindset. It's all about learning something new and having an attitude that "I can do this!" It is saying to yourself, "This is not easy. I am really struggling, but I am not giving up." When you were a baby you walked...you kept putting one foot in front of the other---so get that back in your brain---remember anything is possible. Whether you are changing a negative attitude, practicing patience with a family member, or deciding that you are going to pass Algebra this time, get your Growth Mindset on!


An individual's mindset impacts how they face and cope with challenges, such as the transition from junior high school to high school or losing your job…or taking a challenging class. “Individuals with a Growth Mindset are more likely to continue working hard despite setbacks. Students with a Growth Mindset understand that their talents and abilities can be developed through effort, good teaching, and persistence. They don't necessarily think everyone's the same or anyone can be Einstein, but they believe everyone can get smarter if they work at it,” Carol Dweck, researcher, author Mindsets, 2006.


Assignment:

  1. Do you think imagination is important?

  2. What do you imagine your adult life to be like?

  3. If you had courage and a growth mindset what do you think is possible?

The Mindset of a Champion | Carson Byblow | TEDxYouth@AASSofia

Lesson 3: What is Mindfulness?

PEACE is an acronym for a practice that can be used in any difficult situation. Perhaps you can begin by practicing with small daily irritations. Those of you dealing with more extreme circumstances may need to repeat the practice many times a day, and you may also want to get additional help from a friend, a parent, a counselor, or a doctor.


The practice goes like this.

  • P­ is for pause. When you become aware that things are difficult, pause.

  • E is for exhale. When you exhale you may want to let out a sigh, or a groan, or even weep. And after you exhale you want to...Inhale. Just keep breathing.

  • A is for acknowledge, accept, allow. As you continue to breathe, acknowledge the situation as it is. Your backpack with all your stuff is gone, your parents are getting divorced, your best friend is now dating the person who just became your ex.

    • Acknowledging a situation doesn’t mean you are happy about it. It just means that you recognize the situation is as it is, whether you like it or not.

    • Accept the situation, and your reaction to it. You are furious, devastated, heartbroken, jealous, or all of the above.

    • Allow your experience. See if you can discover a middle way: having your thoughts and feelings, without your thoughts and feelings having you and making you act in ways you may regret.

  • C is for choose. When you are ready, and this may take a few moments, days, weeks or even months, choose how you will respond. At its best, responding involves some additional Cs.

    • Clarity: being clear about what you want, what your limits are, what you are responsible for.

    • Courage: the courage to speak your truth, and to hear the truth of others.

    • Compassion: compassion for yourself, for others, and for how incredibly difficult it sometimes is to be a human being, and

    • Comedy: (Actually, I prefer the word humor, but it doesn’t start with C.) It is amazing what a sense of humor and a willingness to not take ourselves too seriously can do.

  • E is for engage. After you have paused, exhaled, allowed, and chosen your response, you are ready to engage with people, with the situation, with life.


Remember, if it is possible, practice with small upsets first. For extreme circumstances you may have to repeat this process over and over and receive additional support. The more you practice, the more PEACE you will have. (from Mindfulness: A Guide for Teachers By Dr. Amy Saltzman)


ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

UCLA Guided Meditations CLICK HERE


How to Settle the Mind CLICK HERE


Center for Healthy Minds CLICK HERE

What is Mindfulness?

Lesson 2: Integrity in the Family

Who was your very first teacher? A kindergarten instructor? Preschool teacher? Not quite.


Your parents were your first teachers – and unlike a teacher you’ll have for a year before you move on to the next grade, your mom and dad are teachers that you’ll have for many years. Your home is a classroom, and how your family interacts is a daily lesson in integrity.


Whether you realize it or not, your parents are role models. Not just during important stressful times, but during your family’s day-to-day routine. What sort of lessons are you learning about integrity?


Family Code of Ethics


Talk to your parents about developing a family code of ethics. You already have behaviors that your family has agreed upon – but have you talked about them? Do you know why these actions are the rule in your household?


A family code of ethics should address how your family acts with honesty and integrity. What is acceptable behavior? How does your family feel about:

  • Academic dishonesty. Is it ever ok to take credit for someone else’s work?

  • Gossip. What’s your family’s policy on talking about others?

  • Finders keepers. What do members of your family do if they find something that doesn’t belong to them?

  • Little white lies. Does your family think it’s ever acceptable to fib?

  • Consequences. What happens if a family member fails to act with integrity?


Talk about a family code of ethics with your parents – you might be surprised at what you learn. Parents are human, too, and people of all ages face challenges with honesty and integrity. What advice do your parents have on living honestly? Who are their role models?

3 Lessons on Integrity

Martin Seligman and Christopher Peterson, leaders in positive psychology research, assembled a study group of philosophers, historians, and religious leaders of all faiths to determine if there were any values held in common all over the earth and throughout history. They started with literate cultures.


They found 24 character strengths that were ubiquitous. In other words, although there were minor exceptions here and there, all these 24 character traits were found nearly everywhere. They then looked at two cultures without written language, the Inuit and the Massai, and confirmed that they, too, valued these 24 character strengths.


6 Core Themes emerged:

  • Wisdom

  • Courage

  • Humanity

  • Justice

  • Temperance

  • Transcendence


Assignment:

CLICK HERE and find the on-line survey to the right of the page: REGISTER TO TAKE THE FREE SURVEY. Take 15 minutes to answer each question honestly. The results are fun to learn and will teach you something about yourself.


Reflection:

After completing the survey and reading your results, consider enhancing your top 5 strengths.

  1. Are you surprised by the results of the survey? Which strengths are you going to work extra hard to increase?

  2. Give three examples of how you already see that these strengths are significant in your daily life.

  3. How could you use these strengths more?

  4. What strength would you like to grow? How will you do this?

Character Development for Teens and Up - Leadership Development

About Be a SHARK

BE A SHARK is a schoolwide campaign designed to improve school climate and culture and to teach, highlight, and promote the positive behaviors that define who we want to be.

Instructions:

  • Watch the video
  • Do you think imagination is important? What do you imagine your adult life to be like? If you had courage and a growth mindset what do you think is possible?
  • Describe your dream if you could do anything on the planet.


This lesson was designed by Collaborative Learning Solutions.

CLICK HERE to be directed to CLS website.