This is such a cute lesson about kind words to be used with primary and special education students because it’s a hands-on way to attach meaning to and categorize certain words. I adapted it from the Preschool Powol Packets Blog

How I would teach it:

  1. Read the Mo Willem’s book Should I Share My Ice- Cream?should I share my ice cream
  2. Before, during, and after the reading, discuss friendship.What is a good friend? Is elephant showing good friendship? What about Piggie? What kinds of words do good friends use?
  3. Review the 5 senses with the students. Tell the students that we are going to use our senses (specifically, touch) to learn about kind words.
  4. Start by handing out cotton balls. Ask the students to touch and squeeze the cotton balls. They might want to feel the cotton ball on their arms.
  5. Ask the students to describe the cotton balls (They might use words like: soft, squishy, fluffy, cozy, nice)
  6. Next, ask them to think of words that remind you of cotton balls, nice words. (thank you, please, compliments, words of encouragement, your welcome, friendly greetings, invitations).
  7. Then, hand out small pieces of sandpaper for your students to examine and feel.
  8. Again, ask them to think of words to describe the sandpaper (They might use words like: hard, poky, sharp, rough, grainy, scratchy).
  9. Have them come up with words that remind you of sandpaper, hurtful words.( mean words, mean tone of voice, put downs, exclusionary language). Explain that sandpaper words can scratch or hurt our feelings.
  10. Encourage your students to think about the kinds of friends they want to be and to use cotton-ball words. Celebrate their efforts by putting a cotton ball in a jar every time your hear a cotton ball word. Have a cotton ball word party once the jar is full!
  11. Have students explore different bullying-type scenarios (through role-play or stories) and think up cotton ball words to help solve the conflict!

Leave a comment below to share how you used and adapted this lesson for your classroom! I always get inspired by people’s stories and the things they do. You might just inspire someone today!

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