Overview For Teachers
ATTITUDE: The ability to demonstrate a positive, optimistic outlook; take responsibility for actions; use appropriate language; avoid gossip; show politeness; smile on a regular basis; to be enthusiastic and self-confident; take direction; to be eager and motivated to complete tasks.
Upon completion of this module, the student will understand the importance of bringing a good attitude to the
classroom and the workplace. In addition, the objectives listed below should be met.
Ability to recognize the difference between a positive and negative attitude
Ability to understand and demonstrate the characteristics of a good attitude
Ability to understand how your attitude affects your daily life and future
This module concentrates on teaching students to recognize and display the proper personal attitudes and develop
realistic expectations for themselves in school and at work. The key to obtaining the proper attitude is to always strive to do the best job at every task. It is also important to recognize that attitudes are not set in stone. Students (and teachers) have the ability to change their attitudes. Positive thinking will do much to improve how students feel about themselves and their abilities. In addition, students will have an opportunity to gain an understanding of the importance of a good attitude by participating in various activities designed to stimulate thought and discussion.
TEACHERS: WHAT ARE YOU OBSERVING?
What does attitude look like in the classroom or in school in general? A great way to answer this and get things going is through engagement with the students. Ask your students these questions:
1. What does positive attitude look like in class?
2. How does your attitude affect other students? Example: student activities, sports, or hallway/lunchroom
3. What does positive attitude look like within your learning?
RELEVANCY OF ATTITUDE Why is this important to your students?
Employers have ranked good attitude as one of the most significant employability skills needed in the workplace.
Attitude is Contagious
Time Allocation: 20 minutes
Materials/Resources: whiteboard, markers, computers/tablets/smartphones (students - optional) or printed copies of
the article, paper, pens/pencils, computer/projector (teacher)
WATCH THE OVERVIEW VIDEO:
ANTICIPATORY SET IDEA:
Ask students to name things that are contagious and create a list on the whiteboard.
o Examples: chicken pox, yawning, poison ivy, stomach flu, etc.
Once you’ve created a pretty lengthy list, write the word “Attitude” at the end of the list.
Ask students to respond to the following statement by raising their hand if they agree:
o Your attitude will ultimately determine your success or failure.
Ask students to share their thoughts on this quote and why they agree or disagree with it.
Tell students: not only are the things we listed contagious, but your attitude is contagious as well! It’s important to realize how your attitude and emotions about certain things can either positively or negatively affect you every day. In this lesson, you are going to do some self-reflecting on your current attitude and hopefully find
some ways to improve it, if an attitude adjustment is needed.
Have students read the following article online or give students a printed copy if you prefer.
The Power of a Positive Attitude
Either write the following questions on the whiteboard or project them on the screen. Have students answer the
questions on a piece of paper individually – this is their self-reflection time.
o Is your attitude helping you get what you want? Why or why not?
o Is your attitude helping or hurting you? Explain.
o How do you react when faced with a challenge?
o How does failure affect you?
o What motivates you to succeed? Name some intrinsic and extrinsic sources of motivation?
Intrinsic motivation: performing an action or behavior because you enjoy the activity itself.
Extrinsic motivation: performing an action or behavior for the sake of an external outcome or reward.
When students finish responding to the self-reflection questions, have them find a partner and share their answers.
Come together as a class to discuss the self-reflection questions and let students be open about their thoughts and feelings about their attitude. If students believe an attitude adjustment is required, share the following steps to help them achieve a more positive attitude. Write the steps on the whiteboard or project them on the screen. Have a short discussion about each step and how it can help create a more positive attitude.
o Steps to Create a More Positive Attitude:
Associate with positive people
Change your thoughts
CHECK FOR UNDERSTANDING
Technology Use: Create a Poll Everywhere for students to take.
Non-Technology Use: Students who need further clarification will show a “thumbs down” and students who
understand will show a “thumbs up.”
ETHICAL SCENARIO--Optional (if not using, skip to "review and closing")
The Ethical Choice Scenarios have been developed to provide teachers with the ability to make the material applicable to real-life and relevant to the students. Within this guide, directions and prompts for the teacher will be in BLUE for ease of facilitation.
READ THE FOLLOWING SCENARIO OUT LOUD TO THE STUDENTS:
You’ve played soccer for as long as you can remember – basically ever since you could walk. You love nothing more than the physical and mental challenges that come along with the sport and ever since you were little, you’ve dreamt of being a professional soccer player. You are a freshman in high school and today is the last day of soccer tryouts for your school. You put your heart and soul into tryouts in hopes to make the varsity team because you believe that’s where you belong. You’ve been watching the other player’s tryout and none of them are as good as you. The coaches bring all the players together to announce their team assignments and you aren’t nervous at all – you have no doubt that you will be on the varsity team. The coaches call out names, one by one, until they finally reach yours and your team assignment is junior varsity. You can’t believe it! All your hard work - the sweat, the tears, have gone to waste! You want to confront the coaches to tell them they’ve made a mistake? Should you?
ASK THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS: (display them to the class if necessary)
1. How many of you have already been faced with this scenario, or a similar one, in real life?
2. What could be potential positive or negative outcomes of confronting the coaches?
3. What type of response should you have in this situation? If you say nothing and go home, is that an appropriate
response to have? Is confronting the coaches an appropriate response? Why or why not?
GUIDED DISCUSSION: ASK STUDENTS TO SHARE THEIR THOUGHTS ON THE SITUATION AND HOW THEY
ANSWERED THE QUESTIONS.
NOTE 1: To help facilitate discussion, share any personal experiences you may have encountered with this same
sort of issue.
NOTE 2: Another option to foster further critical thinking is to then ask students, “What advice would you give
someone in this situation?”
NOTE 3: Another option to foster further critical thinking is to then ask students, “What values do you think are
in tension here, why is it an ethical dilemma?”
NOTE: 4: Now share the following additional information with the students:
You have decided not to confront the coaches and you start packing up your equipment to go home. As you are packing up, you overhear two of the other players who were also selected to be on the junior varsity team. They are talking about how excited they are to be part of the team. They mention that their playing time on the varsity team would probably have been very minimal since the coaches already had their starting players set for the year. But, being on the freshman team will actually give them more “game” time to show and enhance their skills. After hearing their conversation, you can’t help but wonder if you were looking at this situation completely wrong. Could being on the freshman team be a blessing in disguise?
CLOSING DISCUSSION: ASK THE STUDENTS, “HOW DOES YOUR ATTITUDE AFFECT YOUR DECISIONS AND
ULTIMATELY YOUR BEHAVIOR?”
REVIEW AND CLOSING:
Ask students the following question and as they leave the classroom, stand at the doorway and have students tell you their answer.
o Which step to create a more positive attitude are you going to incorporate into the rest of your day?
CORRELATION TO OBSERVATION TOOL:
The Frequency Observation Tool (FOT) has a category where students will be observed and rated on their positive
attitude. This lesson will give student the opportunity to self-reflect on their current attitude and to establish steps to
create a more positive attitude.
DIFFERENTIATED INSTRUCTION IDEAS
-Visual: Visual learners will benefit from having the self-reflection questions and the steps to create a more positive attitude written on the whiteboard or projected on the screen.
-Auditory: Auditory learners will benefit from the pair share following their self-reflection as well as the class discussion on the steps to create a more positive attitude.
-Kinesthetic: Kinesthetic learners would benefit from creating a chart, web map, or diagram in response to the self-reflection questions rather than just writing down their answers.
-ESL: ESL students will benefit from having a printed copy of the self-reflection questions and the steps to create a more positive attitude. They would also benefit from working with a partner in case they have questions.
-At-risk: At-risk students will benefit from this lesson from the constant interaction with other students and the class as a whole. Working with a partner on the self-reflection questions may also help keep them engaged in the lesson.
-Advanced: Advanced learners could benefit from the lesson by assisting other students who have rated their understanding as a “thumbs down” and helping them understand any concepts with which they are struggling.