Kathryn Kret                                Rumson 2017-2018                        kate@mrskret.com

Character Education Monthly Themes and

Morning Meeting Ideas

September

Fall into Making Good Choices

Responsibility

October

Respect Rocks

Respect

November

Operation Cooperation

Citizenship

December

The Gift of Peace - Conflict Resolution

Cooperation

January

Change Your Words, Change Your Mindset

Perseverance

February

Be K.I.N.D. (Kids Involved in Nice Deeds)

Caring

March

Fair is Not Always Equal

Fairness

April

Be a S.T.A.R. (Smile, Take a Deep Breath, & Relax)

Self-Discipline

May

Take a Walk in Someone Else’s Shoes

Tolerance

June

Character is Doing the Right Thing When Nobody's Looking

Trustworthiness

Start off each new month by introducing your Monthly Theme in Morning Meeting; let the class know that you will continue to touch back on this theme throughout the month. You should introduce the theme and create a y-chart showing what that value looks/sounds/feels like for your students specifically--it should be written in their words (age-appropriate). Create a space for this y-chart to be displayed and added to throughout the month. Encourage them to add ideas to the charts as the month goes on and even to add stories or pictures/examples demonstrating this value in their life or in the world. By the end of the month you should have discussed this value during at LEAST three morning meetings (about once a week).***Please note that the suggested MM elements listed for each theme do not (and some cannot) happen in the same Morning Meeting. For instance, the Message ideas should happen over three different meetings.  You may choose to do the suggested greeting for one meeting and use the suggested share topic/activity meetings that month.***


September--Responsibility

Accept personal responsibility, and avoid blaming others. #responsibility #passiton www.values.com

MM Component

K-2

3-5

6-8

Greeting

Any greetings are appropriate.Focus on greeting anyone who is late to MM.

Any greetings are appropriate.Focus on greeting anyone who is late to MM.

Any greetings are appropriate.Focus on greeting anyone who is late to MM.

Sharing

Do you have any chores at home? Jobs that mom and dad expect you to do by yourself?

How do you feel after you complete a chore/task with no help from adults?

What are some things that you are allowed to do independently at home? School?

How did you know you were able to handle them by yourself?

In what ways are you independent or partially independent?

In your life, what ways do you want to have more autonomy, more independence?

Activity

Create a list of 3 jobs at school or home that you would like to do independently by the end of the year. Brainstorm an action plan that leads you to success.

Create hopes and dreams for the school year and an action plan displaying how you will hold yourself responsible along the way.

Create personal goals (social and academic) and declarations for the year.

Message

(same for all grade levels)

Read -->

1.As a class create a Y-chart about what Responsibility looks, like sounds like and feels like

2. Collect a list of ways we can show/demonstrate responsibility here at school, at home or in the community.

3. Encourage students to add personal stories or current event examples showing responsibility throughout the month.

October--Respect

MM Component

K-2

3-5

6-8

Greeting

Greetings that focus on good eye-contact and body language

-World Language Greeting (provide examples)

-Emphasis on eye-contact and body language

-World Language Greeting (provide examples)

-Emphasis on eye-contact

-How to appropriately shake hands

Sharing

What makes someone a good friend?

What are the qualities of a good friend?

Who is someone you have a good relationship with?

What characteristics do you appreciate in a good friend?

Activity

Sesame Street Does Respect

Kid President Video and Activity

Kid President Video and Activity

Message

(same for all grade levels)

Read -->

1.As a class create a Y-chart about what respect looks, like sounds like and feels like

2. Collect a list of ways we can show/demonstrate respect here at school, at home or in the community.

3. Encourage students to add personal stories or current event examples showing respect throughout the month.


November--Citizenship

An inspiring quote about #volunteering from www.values.com #dailyquote #passiton

MM Component

K-2

3-5

6-8

Greeting

Formal Greeting (Mr. or Mrs…)

Formal Greeting (Mr. or Mrs…)

Formal Greeting (Mr. or Mrs…)

Sharing

Tell a story about a time you told the truth, even though that was a difficult thing to do.

Tell a story about a time you took responsibility for something you had done or said.

Tell a story about being brave.

Tell a story about a time you told the truth, even though that was a difficult thing to do.

Tell a story about a time you took responsibility for something you had done or said.

Tell a story about being brave.

Tell a story about a time you told the truth, even though that was a difficult thing to do.

Tell a story about a time you took responsibility for something you had done or said.

Tell a story about being brave.

Activity

The Homework Truth (Use as a discussion starter or a role-playing activity.)

For last night's homework, you were supposed to read a story and be ready to tell it to the class today in your own words. You didn't read a story last night because you were having too much fun playing video games. You figured you could remember an old story. When your teacher calls on you, you are suddenly nervous and can't remember any stories at all. What should you do?

Fulfilling Small Responsibilities (Use as a writing prompt or a discussion starter.)

Lots of little things make up good behavior, such as not littering, keeping quiet when people need to concentrate, and returning library books on time. Make a list of small responsibilities. (That part of the activity might be done in small, cooperative groups.) Then try to think of a situation in which you fulfilled one of the small responsibilities. Think of another situation in which you did not fulfill a small responsibility. Are the "little" things really that important? Why or why not?

Honesty is the Best Policy(Use as a writing prompt or a small-group discussion starter.)

A student in the hallway has just dropped a twenty-dollar bill. You would like to go to the movies tonight with your friends! This money would pay for the cost and you might even be able to buy some extra snacks. Would you tell the student they dropped the money or take the money and pretend it was yours all along? Explain your thinking.

Message

(same for all grade levels)

Read -->

1.As a class create a Y-chart about what citizenship looks, like sounds like and feels like

2. Collect a list of ways we can show/demonstrate citizenship here at school, at home or in the community.

3. Encourage students to add personal stories or current event examples showing citizenship throughout the month.

Honesty is the basic theme of good citizenship. A person must be honest with others, and with himself or herself, in order to be a good citizen.

Courage is important to good citizenship. Human beings are capable of moving beyond mere goodness toward greatness. Courage enables people to do the right thing even when it’s unpopular, difficult, or dangerous. Many people---including Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Martin Luther King Jr., Susan B. Anthony, and Mohandas Gandhi---have had the courage to change the rules to achieve justice.


December--Cooperation

Build personal relationships with individuals in your group, or team. #teamwork #passiton www.values.com

MM Component

K-2

3-5

6-8

Greeting

--->

Spider Web
  1. Holding a ball of yarn, a student greets someone across the circle and gently rolls the ball to that person while firmly holding on to the end of the yarn.
  1. The student who receives the ball of yarn greets another student across the circle and rolls the ball to that student, making sure to hold onto the unraveling strand with one hand.
  1. This continues until everyone has been greeted and the yarn has created a web across the circle.
  2. To unravel the web, students greet each other in reverse order until the ball of yarn is wound up again.

Sharing

Tell about a time team-work or cooperation was needed in your life, in or out of school.

Tell about a time team-work or cooperation was needed in your life, in or out of school.

Tell about a time team-work or cooperation was needed in your life, in or out of school.

Activity

Zoom-Form students into a circle and give each a unique picture of an object, animal or whatever else suits your fancy. You begin a story that incorporates whatever happens to be on your assigned photo. The next student continues the story, incorporating their photo, and so on.

All Aboard--Tie a piece of rope in a loop large enough for all students in your class to fit within it and lay it on the ground. Invite all your students to sit inside the circle. Once they have accomplished this, congratulate them for working together to make sure they all fit and now challenge them to see if they can do even better. To challenge them further, make the rope smaller. Now, invite your students once again to sit within the circle. Once they have accomplished this, congratulate them again and see if they are up for another challenge. Continue to make the rope smaller and smaller until you see that your students are beginning to run out of solutions as to how they can all fit within the circle. Eventually, the circle will be much too small to fit every student. The goal is for students to cooperate with each other and work close together to come up with creative solutions. As you watch your students, encourage them by asking questions or to think about the various ways they can go about trying to fit everyone in. You will be surprised with some of the solutions they come up with such as putting only hands in, feet in, fingers in, etc. At the end, discuss what you observed and invite feedback. You will find that your students will just love them and the best part – they all worked together and had fun!

ESP-Divide the whole group into at least three or four groups. Each group comes up with an action and a sound in private. At the count of three the Leader says ESP and everybody does their action and sound. Everybody looks around and notices who is doing what. The goal is to end up with everybody doing the same action and sound at the end. It may take several rounds as groups compromise and do other groups' actions and sounds.

Message

(same for all grade levels)

Read -->

1.As a class create a Y-chart about what cooperation (teamwork) looks, like sounds like and feels like

2. Collect a list of ways we can show/demonstrate cooperation (teamwork) here at school, at home or in the community.

3. Encourage students to add personal stories or current event examples showing cooperation (teamwork)throughout the month.

Another idea for the month of December--this is an old calendar but you can choose ideas and create one of your own to complete as a class! Month of Kindness Calendar


January--Perseverance

MM Component

K-2

3-5

6-8

Greeting

One Minute Mingle Greeting

One Minute Mingle Greeting

One Minute Mingle Greeting

Sharing

Have you ever wanted to quit something because it was hard or not going as you planned? Tell us about it.

(Use this to set them up for a conversation about persevering despite wanting to quit and brainstorm strategies we can use when it gets tough.)

Have you ever wanted to quit something because it was hard or not going as you planned? Tell us about it.

(Use this to set them up for a conversation about persevering despite wanting to quit and brainstorm strategies we can use when it gets tough.)

Have you ever wanted to quit something because it was hard or not going as you planned? Tell us about it.

(Use this to set them up for a conversation about persevering despite wanting to quit and brainstorm strategies we can use when it gets tough.)

Activity

Power of Yet Video

2018 Goals-- complete the PDF attached (and visit this site for more fun activities. I signed up for the mailing list and it provides awesome resources to use at home or school.) Talk about posting these goals in the classroom and holding a celebration every month to celebrate goals achieved and cheer on those who haven't completed their goal--yet.

Power of Yet Video

2018 Goals-- complete the PDF attached (and visit this site for more fun activities. I signed up for the mailing list and it provides awesome resources to use at home or school.) Talk about posting these goals in the classroom and holding a celebration every month to celebrate goals achieved and cheer on those who haven't completed their goal--yet.

Power of Yet Video

2018 Goals-- complete the PDF attached (and visit this site for more fun activities. I signed up for the mailing list and it provides awesome resources to use at home or school.) Talk about posting these goals in the classroom and holding a celebration every month to celebrate goals achieved and cheer on those who haven't completed their goal--yet.

Message

(same for all grade levels)

Read -->

1.As a class create a Y-chart about what Perseverance (growth mindset or grit) looks, like sounds like and feels like

2. Collect a list of ways we can show/demonstrate Perseverance (growth mindset or grit) here at school, at home or in the community.

3. Encourage students to add personal stories or current event examples showing Perseverance (growth mindset or grit))throughout the month.


February--Caring

MM Component

K-2

3-5

6-8

Greeting

Compliment Greeting (give the students think time, as you want to encourage genuine and personal compliments “I like that you always help me pack up at the end of the day.”)

Compliment Greeting (give the students think time, as you want to encourage genuine and personal compliments “I like that you always help me pack up at the end of the day.”)

Compliment Greeting (give the students think time, as you want to encourage genuine and personal compliments “I like that you always help me pack up at the end of the day.”)

Sharing

Who do you depend on? Why? Talk about how sometimes the people we depend on, we take for granted. Let’s spend the month reaching out to thank and give back to those who might not even know they make a difference.

Who do you depend on? Why? Talk about how sometimes the people we depend on, we take for granted. Let’s spend the month reaching out to thank and give back to those who might not even know they make a difference.

Who do you depend on? Why? Talk about how sometimes the people we depend on, we take for granted. Let’s spend the month reaching out to thank and give back to those who might not even know they make a difference.

Activity

Talk about Random Acts of Kindness and how together as a class you will commit to doing them this month. Brainstorm your own list or use a premade one for guidance. Post your list in your Morning Meeting area and allow kids to put a check next to a R.A.C.K. as they complete them! Each week choose to complete one together as a class (letter writing, or creating bags for donations). At the end of the month (or week) reflect upon how it felt to spread these acts of kindness especially the anonymous ones. Encourage your students to continue these acts even when the month is over. RACK Tags

Talk about Random Acts of Kindness and how together as a class you will commit to doing them this month. Brainstorm your own list or use a premade one for guidance. Post your list in your Morning Meeting area and allow kids to put a check next to a R.A.C.K. as they complete them!Each week choose to complete one together as a class (letter writing, or creating bags for donations). At the end of the month (or week) reflect upon how it felt to spread these acts of kindness especially the anonymous ones. Encourage your students to continue these acts even when the month is over. RACK Tags

Talk about Random Acts of Kindness and how together as a class you will commit to doing them this month. Brainstorm your own list or use a premade one for guidance. Post your list in your Morning Meeting area and allow kids to put a check next to a R.A.C.K. as they complete them!Each week choose to complete one together as a class (letter writing, or creating bags for donations). At the end of the month (or week) reflect upon how it felt to spread these acts of kindness especially the anonymous ones. Encourage your students to continue these acts even when the month is over. RACK Tags

Message

(same for all grade levels)

Read -->

1.As a class create a Y-chart about what caring looks, like sounds like and feels like

2. Collect a list of ways we can show/demonstrate caring here at school, at home or in the community.

3. Encourage students to add personal stories or current event examples showing caring throughout the month.


March--Fairness

MM Component

K-2

3-5

6-8

Greeting

Sharing

Whom do you consider to be a good leader in your community? Why?

Activity

This book 

Read the book and discuss what was

Brainstorm and collect characteristics of a good leader. Talk about the concept of being fair and being equal. How are they different? Would you want a leader that treats everyone fair or equal? How could that impact your community? Here is an an example , do you think the teacher/leader was being fair or equal? How could that affect the community?

or

Another resource here.

Brainstorm and collect characteristics of a good leader. Talk about the concept of being fair and being equal. How are they different? Would you want a leader that treats everyone fair or equal? How could that impact your community? Here is an an example , do you think the teacher/leader was being fair or equal? How could that affect the community?

Or

Another resource here.

Message

(same for all grade levels)

Read -->

1.As a class create a Y-chart about what fair vs equal looks, like sounds like and feels like

2. Collect a list of ways we can show/demonstrate fair vs equal here at school, at home or in the community.

3. Encourage students to add personal stories or current event examples showing fair vs equal throughout the month.