Skills and Attitudes

6, 7, 8

In this lesson the learners will become familiar with vocabulary and concepts associated with self-discipline. They will examine the correlation between self-discipline and maturity.

PrintOne 20-minute lesson

The learner will:

  • discuss and define skills and attitudes of self-discipline.
  • Pages from previous lesson with descriptions of discipline and self-discipline (posted on the wall)
  • Pieces of 8 1/2 x 11 inch paper, cut in a random "stepping-stone shape,"with one of these words (not the definition) written on each paper:

delayed gratification [to put off immediate reward to pursue a longer term goal] impulse control [the ability to think before acting] goal [the end point to which efforts are directed] commitment [determination to get something done,or to a person] willpower [the ability to begin or continue on a plan or course of action] self-control [restraint of oneself or ones actions, ie. anger] perseverance [sticking to the task which needs to be done, even if we want to quit. Putting forth maximum effort to always do the best you can] patience [ability or willingness to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay] integrity [knowing and doing what’s right, be true to yourself and others] persistence [continuing without change for a long period] self-motivation [ability to start or continue a task or activity without another's prodding or supervision] self-talk [anything said to oneself for encouragement or motivation; a person’s internal mental conversations] self-denial [restraining one's own wants or desires]


  1. Anticipatory Set:

    Ask the students to read again the lists they posted on the self-discipline wall. Then ask them to all move to the wall that lists the discipline words and phrases and to turn and face you.

  2. Explain to the class that one mark of maturity [being fully developed in body and mind; adult] is one's ability to practice self-disicpline to accomplish a specific task rather than to be disciplined.

  3. Teacher: Being self-disciplined is a journey that most people work on all their lives. Its like building muscles -- self-discipline muscles get stronger with exercise. There are many skills and attitudes to exercise when building strong self-discipline muscles that help with the journey of taking responsibility for your own discipline. We're going to think about and talk about some of those skills and attitudes for getting from here (point to them on the discipline side of the room) to here (point to the self-discipline side of the room).

  4. Ask the students to return to their seats. One at a time, starting with delayed gratification and impulse control that were introduced in Lesson One, hold up the stepping stone papers with the words written on them from the "materials" list. Ask a few students to volunteer a definition. Through discussion, come to consensus about a simple definition for each that makes sense to them.Write the definition on the stepping stone paper and post each on the wall between the discipline and self-discipline walls. When all the words/definitions are completed, there should be a "stepping-stone" like row posted on the wall from the discipline side of the room to the self-discipline side of the room. Tell the students that thisis the "path" to self-discipline.

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.III Philanthropy and the Individual
    1. Standard PI 01. Reasons for Individual Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark MS.5 Describe the responsibility students have to act in the civil society sector to improve the common good.