What It's Not and What It Is

6, 7, 8

Self-Discipline is a little hard to define because it varies by personal experiences. This activity uses discussion and analysis to define self-discipline through examples and non-examples.

PrintOne 20-minute lesson

The learner will:

  • define self-discipline by examples and non-examples.

Chart paper and markers

Home Connection 

At home and in the community, look for examples of people using self-discipline. Be ready to talk about how self-discipline is observed and measured.


  1. Anticipatory Set:

    Have participants look at their Self-Discipline Survey from the previous lesson. Discuss why the traits that get the lowest rating are NOT the same for everyone. For some, resisting eating a whole bag of potato chips takes a lot of discipline, while for others it's hard to keep a bedroom tidy. For some people the description of self-discipline is not something they or their family value. It is helpful to talk about the importance of empathy and sensitivity in this conversation. 

    Optional: Make a list of wild excuses for fun. You've heard of "The dog ate my homework." What other wild excuses can there be?

  2. On charts around the room, there are different headings. Put the group into four sub-groups that rotate from chart to chart to add their ideas to the ideas of the previous groups. Chart Headings:

    1. Examples of self-discipline
    2. Non-examples of self-discipline
    3. Feelings that accompany sticking with a goal vs not sticking with a goal
    4. Tools to help myself stay with something hard
  3. Display the charts after eveyone has rotated around. Discuss the observations.