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Our Differences Make Us Stronger (Grades K-5)

Character lesson - differences make us stronger

Overview: Our differences are our greatest strengths. Learning about what we have in common gives us a sense of belonging, but embracing and respecting our differences makes us a stronger community. 

Objectives:

Students will: 

  • explore the similarities and differences of their classmates.
  • discuss what it means to recognize and respect each other’s differences.
  • reflect on how it feels to be excluded for your differences. 

Materials needed:

  • Large sheets of paper—write 1, 2, 3, or 4 on each
  • Marker
  • One die with the 6 and 5 covered up
  • List of questions (see below)

Directions:

  1. Place one numbered sheet of paper in each corner of the room.
  2. Gather the group in the middle of the room and point out the four corners.
  3. Read a set of choices (use suggestions listed below or create your own) and ask students to go to the corner that best represents them. For example: “Which drink do you like the best? Go to corner 1 if you like soda the best, corner 2 for juice, corner 3 for milk, or corner 4 for water.”
  4. Once the students move to the corner that represents them, ask each corner to briefly discuss why they selected their answer.
  5. Ask a few students from different corners to share with the large group.
  6. After a brief discussion, roll the dice. The number it lands on is the “unlucky number.” Eliminate the students in that corner. If you need to move the game more quickly, use the dice to choose the “lucky number” and that corner stays.
  7. Keep playing until only a few participants are left. Play through at least two times.
  8. Following the activity, ask:
    • How did it feel to be with others who are just like you?
    • How does it feel when you are different than everyone else?
    • What can we do to show respect to those who are different than us?
    • How could our differences make us a stronger group?
    • What did it feel like when you were eliminated from the game because of your differences?

Question Suggestions:

  • Which music do you like best…rock, rap, country, or classical?
  • Which do you wear most often…tennis shoes, sandals, bare feet, or boots?
  • Which drink do you like the best…soda, juice, milk, or water?
  • Are you most like a…square, triangle, circle, or oval?
  • What type of movie do you like best…action, romance, comedy, or science fiction?
  • Where would you most like to go on vacation…the beach, mountains, an amusement park, or camping?
  • What color do you like best…green, purple, pink, or blue?

Adapted from Team-Building Activities for Every Group