In third grade we talk about the idea that teasing and unkind words can lead to bullying and exclusion. We discuss the feelings associated with teasing and the lasting effects of mean words. We read and discuss a "The Invisible Boy" a story about a boy who feels invisible to everyone and excluded by his peers. We notice that it only takes one person to come along and make our character feel included. The third graders have vowed to be that person for someone. They will be looking to see who might feel excluded and thinking about how to help them join the group so that everyone can feel "visible".
We perform an experiment with water, pepper, liquid soap, and sugar that is a metaphor for the playground. The water represents the playground, while the pepper shows the children playing at recess. The soap representing the mean words sends all of the children running away, while the sugar serves as the apology that ever so slowly will bring the children back out again.
Homework: For homework each student is being asked to give three "put ups" or compliments to anyone of their choosing either at home or in school.
Please use this class lesson as a springboard for discussing inclusion/exclusion at home and in the community, at events, with siblings, on play dates, when engaged in sports, etc.
Together we can grow our Circle of Friends!