Definition of Terms

3, 4, 5

Students will define philanthropy as "sharing or giving time, talent or treasure for the common good."

PrintOne Thirty-Minute Class Period

The learner will:

  • define philanthropy and give examples of it in everyday life.
  • Video “Philanthropy is...” (See Biographical Reference)
Home Connection 

The learners should ask their parents/guardians to give examples of how their family or friends have or can give time, treasure or talent to their neighborhood or community.



  1. Anticipatory Set:

    Write the word “philanthropy” on the board. Ask students to write what they think the word means. Allow a few minutes for this activity. Students read their definitions to their classmates. As they read them, the teacher writes words they use on the board related to time, treasure, or talent. Show the five-minute video clip (Philanthropy is…).

  2. Share this little story with the class: It was Election Day and Mrs. Rogers wanted to go to the polls and vote. She had planned to take the baby in the stroller with her but today the baby seemed to be coming down with a cold and was too uncomfortable to go. Hearing about this problem, Mrs. Evers, the neighbor next door, urged Mrs. Rogers to leave the baby with her while she voted. Finding this a perfect solution, Mrs. Rogers found she was able to go to the polls and vote after all. Tell the learners that Mrs. Evers’ action was an example of philanthropy. Ask the students whether Mrs. Evers gave her time, talent, or treasure and how her action benefitted the common good.

  3. Have students work in groups of three to come up with a definition in their own words. When the teams appear to have settled on their definitions, set up a brainstorming web on the board. Each team can offer their idea of what philanthropy is. As the web is created, the class can see what the other teams have contributed to the topic. This web can include synonyms for the words in the definition, examples of each word, or personal experiences of giving and sharing.

  4. At this time put the following definition on the chalkboard:Philanthropy is "giving time, talent, or treasure and taking action for the common good."Ask learners if there is anything in this definition which was not included in the brainstorm webbing about the term.

  5. Ask learners to reflect on the lesson by listing examples of giving time, talent and treasure. They may draw examples of time, treasure, and talent or make up hand symbols for the words in the definition.


This web, writing, and reflection drawings should be kept as a measurement tool. Teacher recorded observations are also recommended to assess comprehension.

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.