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Character Education Lesson Plan

Teaching Kindness with The Invisible Boy

by Trudy Ludwig

invisible boy

Grades: 1-4

CASEL Standard: Social Awareness- The abilities to understand the perspectives of and empathize with others, including those from diverse backgrounds, cultures and contexts. 

Character Education Lesson Objective: To discuss different ways to show kindness and understand the importance of showing kindness


Part 1:  

  • What are some ways that you can show kindness to someone?

  • I am going to write down a list of all of the ways you can think of to show kindness.  You can show kindness by smiling at someone, helping them or drawing them a picture.  

  • Have you ever had someone show you kindness?  How did it feel?

  • When someone shows you kindness, it makes you feel really good.

  • When do you think you can show someone kindness?

  • You can show kindness anytime.  It is really nice to show kindness to everyone, but sometimes there are people who need kindness more than others.

  • Have you ever seen someone who looks sad, looks like they are having a hard time or is alone?  Showing kindness to someone like that can make a big difference.

  • You are now going to be reading about difference situations and thinking about how you could show kindness.

  • After you are done, we will talk about the ideas that you have.

Part 2:  

  • We are going to be reading a book called, The Invisible Boy by Tracy Ludwig.

  • Read the book.

  • Why does it seem like Brian is invisible in his classroom?

  • How does Brian feel at recess and lunch?  Why?

  • What is Brian really good at?

  • How does Brian feel when the other kids are laughing at Justin’s lunch?  Why?

  • How do you think Brian feels when Justin thanks him for the note he left him?

  • Justin stands up to Emilio and lets Brian work with him in his group.  He also tells Emilio that Brian can draw the pictures to go along with their story.  What happens to Brian in the story when Justin does those things?

  • Why does Brian become “not so invisible after all?”

  • How did you feel when listening to the book?  Why?

Part 3:  

  • Brian showed Justin kindness when he wrote him a note telling him that he thought his lunch looked good.  Justin returned the kindness to Brian when he let him work in a group of three with him and Emilio and when he invited him to sit with them at lunch.

  • Can you think of a way that you have shown kindness to someone or someone has shown kindness to you?

  • You are going to write a short story about a time that you showed kindness or had kindness showed to you.  You can draw a picture when you finish writing the story.

  • You will have the chance to share your story when everyone is done.

  • After the students complete their stories and illustrations, allow those who would like to share to do so.  Emphasize the different ways that kindness can be shown.

Related lessons:

View more: Character Education Lesson Plans

Written by Kimberly Greacen, Education World® Contributing Writer

Kimberly is an educator with extensive experience in curriculum writing and developing instructional materials to align with Common Core State Standards and Bloom's Taxonomy.

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