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A lesson plan on Helping


Social Studies  


2, 3  

Amanda Jensen

October 6, 1997



Grade level: 2 nd – 3 rd grade

Length: 30-40 minutes

*to be done at the beginning of the school year

Performance Expectations:

*The student will be able to act out a helpful behavior.

Resources: Pictures of helpful situations (person helping others to pick up toys; some one showing a new student around the school, etc.), job chart of some sort (can be made out of material, or it can be on laminated paper) and the poem A New Friend by Marjorie Allen Anderson.


*Introduction: Read the poem A New Friend by Majorie Allen Anderson. Ask the students what the neighborhood children could have done to help this boy feel more welcomed in their neighborhood. Tell them that we are going to make our classroom as friendly as we want the neighborhood.

*Development: Show pictures to the students that show peers being friendly and helpful. Ask the students to tell how the various people are being helpful or showing their friendship. List some of these qualities on the board. Go over the list with the children after you are finished looking at the pictures. Using the list that the students just made, ask the students to list ways that they can help in the classroom. Why are the things they list helpful? What would happen if the things listed weren’t done? Each student should be able to tell why the task is helpful to the classroom (whatever they suggest). Make up a list of jobs that the students need to fulfill in order to make sure that the classroom is taken care of well. Have a job chart ready to put the newly-created jobs on.

Have the students act out situations in the classroom in which people show they are friends (emphasizing the chart the children have made of “helpful” qualities). For example: A person is hurting on the playground. Have the students come up with their own ways of solving the situation.

*Closure: Ask the students why it is good to be helpful in the classroom. Recap the qualities listed on the board. Ask the students to become aware of peers who perform the helpful qualities. Have a form in the classroom to be used by the students. Whenever they see a person being helpful in the room (outside of his/her job responsibilities), a student can fill out the form and hang it somewhere in the classroom (on a door, or a bulletin specifically designed for this activity).


*The teacher will take anecdotal notes while the students are performing their skits.

*The students will evaluate the skits. For each role play, each student will write down the good qualities about the skit, what can be improved on, and what the skit’s helpful behavior quality was.

Adaptation/Consideration: If the students are not able to come up with a list of helpful actions from the pictures, then the teacher can help the students by acting out part of situation so that the children can understand the meaning behind the pictures. If there is a physically disabled person in the room, be sure to included him/her in the discussion. Ask him/her what kind of help he/she might want in the classroom.


Anderson, M. A. (1991) A new friend . Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin Social


Armento, B. J., Nash, G. B., Salter, C. L., & Wixson, K. K. (1991) From sea to

shining sea . Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin Social Studies.

A. Jensen. Personal communication, October 5, 1997.

A New Friend
by Marjoie Allen Anderson
They’ve taken in the furniture;
I watched them carefully.
I wondered, “Will there be a child
Just right to play with me?”
So I peeked through the garden fence
(I couldn’t wait to see).
I found the little boy next door
Was peeking back at me.

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