Act of Honesty

6, 7, 8

Learners role-play familiar scenarios in ways that follow the rules and support straightforward communication and also in ways that do not support honesty. They discuss the value of rules or expectations for promoting the common good. 

PrintTwo 20-minute lessons

The learner will:

  • engage in a role-play contrasting dishonest and honest behaviors.
  • describe how honest behaviors relate to the common good.

One copy of handout below Scenario Cards, cut into the individual scenarios




  1. Anticipatory Set

    When the learners are half paying attention, turn off the lights (or do something else that is trivial, but was obviously your action). Act like you didn't do it without directly saying you didn't. Allow the students to respond to your obvious dishonesty and lack of personal responsibility. Then ask them what they observed about your behavior and how it affected them and their trust in you (i.e., shifted the blame, denied responsibility, lost some respect, not honest).

  2. Have the learners work in groups (of four or five) to plan to act out familiar scenarios in honest and dishonest ways, creatively showing a variety of ways to build trust or avoid responsibility and honest interaction. Each group will get a scenario to act out. Each group prepares to act out the scenario in two ways:

    First, they act out the scenario without regard to rules or honest behavior to show how their behavior affects the common good.

    The second role-play demonstrates playing by the expected rules with respect for others and the common good.

    Give the groups about five minutes to prepare for their brief role-plays.

  3. Each group acts out their two interpretations for the whole group. Discuss what the role-plays of the scenario communicated about responsibility, honesty, and the common good.

    Repeat for each group. This may take two or three sessions.

  4. After all the groups performed and discussed their role-plays, discuss the complexity of honesty and responsibility to play by the rules for the good of all. 

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.II Philanthropy and Civil Society
    1. Standard PCS 01. Self, citizenship, and society
      1. Benchmark MS.4 Describe the characteristics of someone who helps others.
    2. Standard PCS 02. Diverse Cultures
      1. Benchmark MS.2 Describe the importance of hearing all voices in a community and respecting their right to be heard.
      2. Benchmark MS.3 Give an example of how philanthropy can transcend cultures.
  2. Strand PHIL.III Philanthropy and the Individual
    1. Standard PI 01. Reasons for Individual Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark MS.3 Identify and give examples of stewardship in cultural traditions around the world.
      2. Benchmark MS.4 Identify and describe the actions of how citizens act for the common good.
      3. Benchmark MS.5 Describe the responsibility students have to act in the civil society sector to improve the common good.