Saturday, December 8, 2012

The Real Definition of COOL

My class lesson for Grade 5  this month is teaching students the real definition of  the word "cool". I got the idea from Naomi Drew's book No Kidding About Bullying and adapted it a bit to fit my needs. To start the lesson I ask students think about the word cool. I ask them, "what does being cool mean to you"? Some of the responses I got were "someone who is popular", "someone who is funny", or "someone who gets in trouble a lot". This is okay, because the point of the lesson is to show students that acting "cool" actually means treating people with respect.

Then ask, "do you know anyone who is cool because of the way they treat people?" Responses will range from student's friends to family members. Remember to ask them why they think that person is cool!

Next, is the real meat and potatoes part of the lesson. Explain to students that today you are here to tell them about the new definition of cool. Create a poster or a power point slide with this definition:

Compassionate
Feeling what another person is feeling in your own heart
Outrageously Kind
Being considerate, friendly, and helpful towards others
Often an upstander
Standing up for someone who is being mistreated
Lives with integrity 
Doing the right thing even when nobody is looking.

Review all four components of the definition. Engage students by asking them whom in their life fits this new criteria. Also, ask if anyone would be willing to share a time when they acted "cool". 

To close the lesson split the class into four groups. Ask each group to create a role play that demonstrates their understanding for each part of the definition. My skit prompts can be found here! If you have any extra time, ask students to complete this worksheet to reflect on someone who is cool in their life. 

My students loved doing the skits and I'm excited to use this terminology with them in future lessons, groups, and counseling sessions!