Value: Selflessness

Time: 20 minutes

Appropriate Ages: 5-10

Materials:

  • Book: The Seven Silly Eaters, by Mary Ann Hoberman, illustrated by Marla Frazee

 

Activity/Discussion:

  1. Read story. At the following points in the story, prompt with the following discussion questions:

Do you think it's okay that they all like different foods?

Does Mrs. Peters look happy to help them?

Does dumping oatmeal on the cat make Mac feel better?

Does it make Mrs. Peters feel better?

Does it make the cat feel better?

While Mrs. Peters is working, what do you notice that Mac is doing?

What's Peter doing? What's Jack doing? What's Lucy doing?

Are they thinking about Mrs. Peters or are they just thinking about themselves?

While Mrs. Peters is working, what do you notice that everyone else is doing? What are the jobs that need to be done in the picture? Who is doing all the jobs? How do you think the kids feel? How do you think Mrs. Peters feels?

Are the kids thinking about Mrs. Peters or are they just thinking about themselves?

Why was Mrs. Peters a wreck?

Can you think of a solution to this problem?

The kids don't usually think about Mrs. Peters because they're usually just thinking about themselves and doing what they want to do. Why do you think they changed their mind and they are starting to think about their mom?

What do you notice that all the kids are doing? What do you notice Mrs. Peters is doing? How does it look like the kids feel? How does Mrs. Peters feel? Why do you think everyone feels this way?

What is the lesson of this story?

2. Ask:

  • Who is someone in your life that helps you a lot, but you don't remember to think about them very much?

  • Is there someone who does a lot of work to help you, but you don't do very much work to help them?

  • Do you feel happy when they help you?

  • Do they feel happy when they help you?

  • Do you think they ever feel tired?

  • What is one way that you could think about them more and help them like they help you?

3. Plan. You can do one of the following options:

  • Family/classroom/group meeting:

    • Discuss the plan for everyone to contribute more and think more about other people than about themselves.

    • Pass out post-it notes and encourage everyone to write down their name and the thing that they are going to do to help think of other people more.

    • Stick all the post-it notes on a door/poster/wall where everyone can see them and remember their commitments.

    • Encourage everyone to also write down their commitments in a agenda/calendar/place where they will remember to do the action item at the time when they are going to do it.

  • Individual Reflection:

    • Have the kids write down the name of the person they want to think about more along with their idea to do to help them more. This can be written on a post-it note, in a journal, or on a small piece of paper. You do not have to force them to tell you their plan- allow them the privacy of their own reflection.

    • Encourage everyone to also write down their commitments in a agenda/calendar/place where they will remember to do the action item at the time when they are going to do it.

    • Be sure that you model doing this for the kids! While they are writing and reflecting and making a plan, you make one too! (Kids aren't the only selfish people in this world.) :)

Happy

Reading!

Alana

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