The concept of values can be both a challenging idea to teach children about, as well as a vitally important lesson. A profound appreciation and understanding of values will result in a child becoming well-rounded and kind. Children can begin to learn about values and understand their significance by playing games that focus on the thoughts behind values and how they affect others and ourselves.
Establish a chart that recognizes the acts of kindness a child performs. This game is suitable for a household or for a classroom. List all the children in the class or the home on the chart and create a column next to their names. Provide each child with a packet of stickers. The stickers could be balloons, hearts, angels or even flowers. Choose a cheerful image for the stickers. Each time you notice a child doing a good or kind deed, let them place a sticker in her column. At the end of each week, award a prize, such as a piece of candy, for every sticker that was earned.
Ask each child to write a list of all the things he would like for his next birthday or upcoming holiday. After everyone is finished, ask the children to count how many items they wrote down and write it at the top of their page. Instruct them to then multiply the number by three. However much the equation totals equates how many things the child must then write down that they are thankful for. The first student to finish wins a prize. The game teaches students to remember to be grateful for the things they have, because it will usually far outweigh the things they want.
Give all students a puzzle and inform them that the first student to complete the puzzle will win a prize. The students can decide to team up and work on one puzzle together or try and complete the puzzle themselves. If they work as a team they must split the prize and if they work individually they can keep the prize themselves. The puzzle must be completed in five minutes, making it advisable to work in a group. The students will see that by deciding to share the prize and work together they are much more likely to gain some of the reward instead of none at all.
Write down a short statement on a piece of paper, such as "Monkeys like to eat bananas," fold it up and hand it to a child. Instruct her to rewrite the statement on another piece of paper but to change one word of the sentence. For example, she could write, "Monkeys like to eat cabbage." She must then pass the note to the person next to her, who repeats the process. Once everyone has had a turn rewriting the sentence, recite the original sentence. Take the final written version and read that to them as well. The two versions will likely be very different from each other. Explain to them that the game is similar to when we tell a lie, even if it is a small lie. The next person who hears it may change it, even if only slightly, when they retell it, and so on. Relay to them that this is how big lies can be created and could result in hurting someone's feelings, which is why it is important to always be truthful.
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