This post originally appeared in 2013, and it’s a timely one with Thanksgiving approaching. I teach this lesson every year…
I’ve written in my books and here on my blog how I use the concept of “gratitude” in class (see The Best Resources On “Gratitude”).
My colleague Katie Hull did a simple and powerful lesson using one of the resources on that “Best” list and I thought I’d share it here.
It’s based on an experiment and video that “Soul Pancake’ did (the video is on that list, but I’ve also embedded again in this post).
Katie gave her students this writing prompt (which is very similar to the question used in the video):
Close your eyes and think of somebody who is really influential in your life and/or who matters to you. Why is this person so important?
She also shared what she had written about her father as a model. After students wrote it, and shared in partners, she showed the video. Then, she encouraged people to to share what they wrote with the person they wrote about — in fact, some students felt they wanted to share it right then by calling.
Tears were shed.
One girl insisted on calling her mother in class, and then the class pushed Katie to call her father right then and there and read what she wrote.
A powerful lesson to kick-off Thanksgiving break….