Character Education - Character Plays
Cleveland Elementary School

This lesson uses five stories from Stories to Light Our Way: Journey to the World of Good Volume 1, written by Ralph Singh. After being split into groups, the students will read the assigned story, identify the theme or moral, and create/perform a play while the remaining students evaluate their performance. The group will then debrief by discussing the lessons, applying them to real life circumstances and situations. This will generate potential reactions that are appropriate and that represent good character that the children can choose if they become witness to, or involved in, one of these situations in the future.

Students will be able to:
  • Read a given story and identify the theme or moral of the story.
  • Create a play that shows and describes the theme or moral of the story.
  • Apply the theme or moral of the story to everyday, real world events and situations through whole group discussions.
  • Evaluate peers using I like, I wish responses.
  • Stories to Light Our Way: Journey to the World of Good, Volume 1, by Ralph Singh
  • Stories to Light Our Way: Journey to the World of Good, Volume 1, by Ralph Singh CD (for lower-level learners)
  • Paper for creating scripts
  • Construction paper for prop creations (if time)
  • I like, I wish evaluations
Opening Discussion:
  • Write the core value and character words, found in this lesson, on the board.
  • Ask the students the essential questions from each of the stories chosen, allowing the students to answer and briefly discuss the responses.

Activities/Strategies:
  • Tell the students that they are going to be divided into teams and given a story that has something to do with one of the words on the board.
  • Tell them they will need to get in their groups, read the story, and discuss what the theme or moral of the story was. (Write these directions on the board for the students to reference throughout the lesson.)
  • Once they identify the lesson, they will write a play of the story that they will act out for the class.
  • Explain that they will have to identify the characters and turn the written text into dialogue.
  • Separate the students into groups and pass out a different story to each group.
    Circulate and help the groups discuss and identify the moral of the story.
  • Also help them turn the text into dialogue by asking prompting questions.
  • As you are rotating around, watch the groups practice their plays giving praise and suggestions.
  • When the groups are ready, have them reconvene as a whole group.
  • Pass out the ‘I like and I wish’ forms to the class.
  • Review the process of giving positive and constructive criticism to their peers.
  • Have each group present their plays, while the remaining students fill out the evaluation.
  • Ask the class what moral or theme they think the play was about. (Students can reference the words on the board from the earlier discussion to help them.)
  • When all groups have presented, collect the evaluation forms. Closing Discussion/Reflection
  • Ask students some of the application questions from each of the stories chosen.
  • Allow students time to discuss answers, and to make connections to experiences they have had or seen.
  • Peer evaluation forms
  • Teacher evaluation forms completed through observation
  • Observation of reactions when in or witnessing a situation