Philanthropy "Giants"

3, 4, 5

Students discover that corporations often give generously to support community causes, programs, and issues. They look and listen for names of companies that donate or sponsor efforts to make a better world and research the local companies that give back.

Lesson Rating 
PrintOne 45-Minute Class Session

The learner will:

  • identify some familiar companies that do philanthropy.
  • identify some recipients of corporate philanthropy.

copies of handouts: Corporate Philanthropy and Corporate Philanthropy Data Chart 

Home Connection 

Students complete Corporate Philanthropy (handout).


  1. Anticipatory Set:

    Show the students many examples of corporate philanthropy. Sources may include credits from public television programs, posters for local events that are sponsored by a corporation, T-shirts for races and other public events (sponsors on the back), and public radio. Ask students whether they think these sponsors are making money or spending money in these cases. 

  2. Discuss why corporations spend money to sponsor events. Help students recognize the purposes of corporate philanthropy and what they gain, such as advertising, consumer goodwill, tax benefits, and responsibility to do good for their customers. Make students aware of any benefits their school or school district may be receiving from corporate partners.

  3. Give students Corporate Philanthropy (handout) as a homework assignment. Read through the worksheet with the class and answer questions, as necessary.

  4. Collect the assignments and use the data to complete the Corporate Philanthropy Data Chart (handout). Discuss which companies are involved in philanthropy and who receives their support. How does sponsoring help the common good? How does it help the company?

  5. Guide students to identify local companies that contribute back to their communities in different ways. They may contribute money to causes, pay their employees to volunteer, or put their name on sponsorships. Define corporate social responsibility as "in the ordinary course of business, a company is operating in ways that enhance society and the environment, instead of contributing negatively to them."


The assessment for this lesson is the completion of the Corporate Philanthropy homework worksheet. Students must supply feasible answers (as judged by the teacher) to all questions.

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.III Philanthropy and the Individual
    1. Standard PI 01. Reasons for Individual Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark E.11 Identify an example of corporate philanthropy and citizenship.