Avoiding Reality
  1. Strand PHIL.I Definitions of Philanthropy
    1. Standard DP 01. Define Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark MS.1 Define philanthropy as individuals and organizations providing their time, talent, and/or treasures intended for the common good throughout history and around the world. Give examples.
      2. Benchmark MS.4 Give examples of how individuals have helped others.
    2. Standard DP 02. Roles of Government, Business, and Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark MS.2 Give examples of needs not met by the government, business, or family sectors.
  2. Strand PHIL.IV Volunteering and Service
    1. Standard VS 01. Needs Assessment
      1. Benchmark MS.1 Identify a need in the school, local community, state, nation, or world.
    2. Standard VS 02. Service and Learning
      1. Benchmark MS.1 Select a service project based on interests, abilities and research.

Learners reflect on issues that people tend to look the other way from to avoid facing difficult situations. They write an honest reflection on issues they can take action to address.

PrintOne 20-minute lesson

The learner will:

  • read about "burying one's head in the sand."
  • brainstorm issues that people may be hiding from in their community.
  • write in his/her journal about taking personal action for an issue.

character education journals

  1. Read the following or ask a student to read it to the class:

  2. Do you recall the childhood game of peek-a-boo? It’s where a young child covers his/her eyes and assumes that because he/she does not see you, you do not see him/her. We chuckle about this game because we know that what the child assumes is just not true. We play along anyway. It’s fun!

    In the animal world, the ostrich is blamed for playing the game of peek-a-boo. The ostrich is said to “bury its head in the sand.” We use this metaphor for people who want to avoid reality. We say that people who "bury their head in the sand" choose not to see the reality of a given situation or circumstance. Sociologists say that this is one way many people choose to look at world hunger. They cover their eyes and pretend not to see the problem, hoping that no one will require them to part of the solution to this problem. Or they "bury their heads" in the sand in an effort to avoid having to see the problem for what it is. That way they don’t feel the need to be involved in being part of the solution to the problem.

  3. Discuss: "When do you choose not to address an issue by burying your head and ignoring the right thing?" For example, we all know we shouldn't litter, but sometimes it is the easy option because we don't want to hold on to an item until we find a trash can or recycle bin. Or maybe we don't take action about conserving water or energy because we feel like one person can't make a difference. Or maybe we don't speak up when we see a family member or friend pollute or waste energy.

  4. Brainstorm a list of issues in the community or world that the students recognize as needs.

  5. Have students write in their journals about what they can do to honestly face global or personal issues. Tell them to list some of their interests and strengths. And then they write about honestly taking responsibility for a community or world issue. Encourage them to think of things they can do to take action or raise awareness about one issue.