Time, Talent, and Treasure

3, 4, 5

Students will recognize time, talent, and treasure as components of stewardship and philanthropy. While written for a Catholic Elementary School, the lesson may be easily adapted for public school use.

Lesson Rating 
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The learner will:

  • identify their talents and what they do with their time and treasures as they relate to philanthropy and stewardship.
  • Time/Talent/Treasure Survey (Handout One)
  • Time/Talent/Treasure Rubric (Handout Three)
  • Journal Activity (Handout Four)
  • Construction paper
  • Filler paper
  • Scissors
  • Markers/crayons


  1. Anticipatory Set Pass out the Time/Talent/Treasure Survey (see Handout One). Ask students to fill it out independently (possible answers are listed). This section is to be given with minimal assisstance.

  2. Discuss answers as a whole group, pointing out the differences and similarities between our talents and how we give our time.

  3. Explain to the students that we can give our time, talent or treasure to help the greater good. We can give in all three areas, two or one.

  4. Ask students to write a story for their "superfriends" (a younger class), about a character that uses his or her time, talent or treasure to help the world or others. Publish these stories and bind in a book. Request that students include illustrations.

  5. Present the finished books to the superfriends as a gift and a reminder to the younger students to be good philanthropists/stewards.


See Time/Talent/Treasure and Story Writing rubrics (see Handout Three). See Journal Activity (see Handout Four).

Cross Curriculum 

Students meet with a younger class (their "superfriends") to present a story they have written about a character who uses his/her time, talent, or treasure to help others.

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.I Definitions of Philanthropy
    1. Standard DP 01. Define Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark E.1 Define philanthropy as the giving and sharing of time, talent, or treasure intended for the common good.
  2. Strand PHIL.III Philanthropy and the Individual
    1. Standard PI 01. Reasons for Individual Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark E.3 Define stewardship and give examples.