Sharing in the Classroom

Radix Elementary School

Students should be aware of what the value of sharing means in the classroom. They should understand that there are friendly ways of asking others to share, and that when you share, you are asking to be trusted with the belongings of others.

• Students will understand that there are friendly ways to share in class
• Students will role play situations in which they share in class
• Students will reflect on words and actions that work when asking others to share
• Students will work together to develop a guide for sharing in the classroom
• chart paper
• markers
• equity sticks (popsicle sticks with students’ names on them)
• index cards
• digital camera/printer
• photo album or bulletin board
• art paper
• crayons
Day 1:  During a classroom meeting, review the classroom rules chart. Focus on the rule involving respecting others and their property. Ask the students to give examples of times that they asked to share something another student had or that the other student was using. List responses on chart paper. Tell the class that they will use their ideas the next school day to discover all the friendly ways we use to ask someone to share. Keep the chart up for the students to peruse.

Day 2: Use the student responses from the day before to create small role play groups or pairs. Have the responses written on index cards for the groups to study. Allow time for practice. As each group performs for the class, ask the students to listen for friendly words that help them to recognize that there is respect and trust. (Teacher jots down key words on a chart from the presentations.)

Day 3: At the classroom meeting, revisit the Day 1 chart of student responses and the key words from the Day 2 presentations. Elicit responses about the sharing situations:  What words did the person use when asking to share? Did the person get what he/she wanted?  Was the person respectful? Was the item that was shared returned in good condition? How would you feel about sharing with that person if he/she asked you to share another time?

Day 4: Using cooperative groups, have the students come up with several friendly rules the class can use as a guide to sharing and write them down. These words and actions should help both the person who is asking to share as well as the person being asked to share. Using equity sticks, one student from each group is chosen to form a small committee to combine the responses into a chart that will be displayed for everyone to use as a Classroom Sharing Guide. All students may enjoy signing the completed guide as a final act of participation in these lessons. While the small committee is finalizing the Guide, the class can create posters about sharing that can be displayed around the school.
Language Arts:
The teacher as well as the students can take candid photos of the students sharing in class. The photos can be captioned with sentences that reinforce words and actions that work toward sharing. A display can be organized, or a photo album can be started and added to as the school year progresses. The display and/or the album can be maintained by the students. The photos can be distributed among the students at the end of the year in smaller albums.

Encourage students to share their own stories/books that reinforce the value of sharing.  The school’s librarian is a great source to help select books that would be appropriate for a classroom display.

Social Studies:
When studying groups of people, such as the Pilgrims and the Native Americans in November, note how sharing helped the groups. Find opportunities to share with other groups of people within the school and the community.

Also, as the class moves each day to different areas of the school, verbalize how the value of sharing helps everyone: checking out and caring for shared library books, sharing and caring for playground equipment, sharing the lunch tables and leaving them in good order, etc.  These benefits to the school community can be added to the class photo album or display.
Elaine Dillon, second grade teacher at Radix Elementary School, a 2007 National School of Character, wrote this lesson.