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.
Optimist, Realist, or Pessimist?
Time Allocation: 20 minutes
Materials/Resources: computer with internet access/ projector (teacher), computers/ tablets with internet access (students), paper, pens/ pencils, copies of the article, How to Train Your Brain to be More Optimistic, or view it online.
WATCH THE OVERVIEW VIDEO:
ANTICIPATORY SET IDEA:
Show students the following video: “Overcoming hopelessness
o STOP the video at 5:40 minutes
When the video is over, have students share their thoughts with the class.
Ask: “What is the over -arching theme to this video?”
o Hopefully you will get answers like: staying positive, looking at the positive side of things, having a good attitude, accepting what
you can’t change instead of focusing on it, etc.
Ask students the following questions:
o What does it mean to be optimistic?
o What is the opposite of being optimistic?
o Do you think it’s important for people to be optimistic?
Have students share their thoughts out loud with the class for a short class discussion.
Have each student take the following online quiz to find out if they are more of an optimist, pessimist, or realist.
o When finished, have students write their result on a piece of paper.
When the whole class is finished, have students group by their results
o All the optimists will make one group, all the realists will be another group, etc.
Have students discuss their results as well as if they believe they agree with their results or not.
After a few minutes, ask the class the following questions for a short class discussion:
o Do you agree with the results you received? Why or why not?
o How do you think being an optimist, realist, or pessimist can affect you at school, at work, and at home?
o Do you think it’s possible to change? Why or why not? If so, what could you do to change into a different category?
Now, have students read the following article, How to Train Your Brain to be More Optimistic.
o NOTE: They can either read it individually or read it as a group.
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:
ALL IN ATTITUDE
People have been telling you from an early age that your attitude is everything. You understand that, but sometimes you just get so frustrated with people . Staying positive is not always easy and your shift at work has been particularly challenging today. As you are getting ready to leave your manager comes to you and asks if you can stay late this evening. In your mind, your initial reaction is “ NO WAY ” and you want to laugh an d respond that way to her… luckily, you have a filter and pause before speaking! As you think about it , you know you have options on how to handle this situation. You also consider that she truly needs help and that is why she is asking you. Since you are available to stay, should you have an “all -in” attitude , be a good team player, and help her out? Or should you figure out a way to get out of this one, realizing it will be all in the attitude of how you respond.
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 consequences for you depending on your decision?
3. What are possible positive or negative consequences for your manager? Your company?
4. Have you ever needed help from someone and if so, how does that impact your decision in this situation?
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, “ If you were the manager and needed help, w hat would you do?”
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?”
CLOSING DISCUSSION: ASK THE STUDENTS, “HOW DOES YOUR ATTITUDE AFFECT YOUR DECISIONS AND
ULTIMATELY YOUR BEHAVIOR?”
REVIEW AND CLOSING:
Write the following question on the whiteboard so they can respond before leaving class.
Are we born an optimist or pessimist or is it something we learn? Discuss.
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 help them understand that how they perceive the world affects their overall attitude.
DIFFERENTIATED INSTRUCTION IDEAS
-Visual: Visual learners will benefit from reading the article, taking the quiz and watching the video clip.
-Auditory: Auditory learners will benefit from all the group and class discussions.
-Kinesthetic: Kinesthetic learners would benefit from taking notes of important aspects.
-ESL: ESL students would benefit from having a partner to assist them in the writing activity in case they have questions or need clarification.
-At-risk: At -risk students will benefit from the interaction they have with their group to help keep them focused and on task.
-Advanced: Advanced learners could benefit from helping other students write down their schedules, or by assisting ESL or At -risk students who may need additional help.