K-12 Teaching and Learning From the UNC School of Education


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  • Jackie Robinson taught us more than baseball: After determining student knowledge about Jackie Robinson, the teacher/counselor reads "Teammates" by Peter Golenbock to fifth graders. The teacher/counselor then divides students into four groups to work cooperatively on questions. Groups select leaders and recorders and each group leader presents answers to the whole class. The teacher/counselor ends the activity with a question that individual students will respond to in writing.
  • Educating leaders for tomorrow: The intent of this lesson is to demonstrate the need for (student) citizens to assume learning and leading roles and behaviors that will better ensure a successful future.
  • All About ME: Likenesses & Differences: This lesson will help to enhance the self-esteem of students by focusing on each child's individual differences.

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Learning outcomes

To help children:

  • recognize their own feelings
  • recognize feelings of others.
  • problem solve feeling in various situations.

Teacher planning

Time required for lesson

30 Minutes


  • Magazines to cut out facial expressions
  • Cut-out poster circles with happy faces on one side and sad faces on the other
  • Popsicle sticks
  • Broken toy


Letter sent to parents to explain social/play group, parents talking to their children, and several social stories on feelings.


  • The students from general education will be rotated four at a time into a small group to be with their friends with special needs. Several different scenarios will be used. An example of a happy scenario would be “How would you feel if you got invited to your friend’s birthday party?” An example of a sad scenario would be “How would you feel if your friend broke your favorite toy?” Emotions/feelings will be discussed and children will be asked to use their happy/sad faces to respond to the different scenarios.
  • Follow up activity: children will find pictures in magazines and sort into categories (happy and sad).
  • Friends from an integrated classroom will come to a center for group time and structured play on a weekly basis.


  • A Daily Evaluation Checklist
  • A Play Time/Social Time Observation Scale (see checklist)
  • A smiley face necklace that children wear during group and earn two hole punches, for good listening and for taking turns

Supplemental information

Maintenance plan: Teachers will continue to find teachable moments throughout the day to help children understand their feelings. Families will be encouraged to reinforce skills in the home and in the community. This would be one lesson of many to encourage growth and understanding about self and others.


Throughout the years researchers have been observing the ways children with and without disabilities interact with their peers. Teachers can play a significant role in helping children with and without disabilities initiate and sustain friendships. This is one example of ongoing lessons to help children understand themselves and others.

  • North Carolina Essential Standards
    • Guidance (2010)
      • Readiness/Exploration/Discovery

        • RED.SE.2 Understand the relationship between self and others in the broader world. RED.SE.2.1 Identify ways of making and keeping friends. RED.SE.2.2 Understand how to support positive relationship building (e.g., managing impulsivity, adaptability, and flexibility)....

    • Healthful Living (2010)
      • Kindergarten

        • K.ICR.1 Understand healthy and effective interpersonal communication and relationships. K.ICR.1.1 Explain reasons for sharing. K.ICR.1.2 Compare people in terms of what they have in common and how they are unique. K.ICR.1.3 Summarize protective behaviors to...
      • Social Studies (2010)
        • K.C&G.1 Understand the roles of a citizen. K.C&G.1.1 Exemplify positive relationships through fair play and friendship. K.C&G.1.2 Explain why citizens obey rules in the classroom, school, home and neighborhood.

North Carolina curriculum alignment

Guidance (2001)

Grade K–5

  • Goal 7: Acquire the attitudes, knowledge and interpersonal skills to help understand and respect self and others.
    • Objective 7.13: Conclude that communication involves speaking, listening, and nonverbal behavior.
    • Objective 7.14: Demonstrate how to make and keep friends.

Social Studies (2003)


  • Goal 2: The learner will identify and exhibit qualities of responsible citizenship in the classroom, school, and other social environments.
    • Objective 2.01: Exhibit citizenship traits such as integrity, responsibility, and trustworthiness in the classroom, school, and other social environments.