Who Will I Be Tomorrow?

9, 10, 11, 12

Students will identify jobs according to their sector of the economy and describe four important character traits, including the role they play in our communication styles.

Lesson Rating 
PrintTwo Forty-Five Minute Class Periods

The learner will:

  • create an Affinity Chart recognizing careers in three sectors of the economy.
  • compare and contrast personality traits and character traits.
  • define the character traits of respect, responsibility, honesty and self-motivation and explain why they are important for any personality type or job.
  • Affinity Chart Instructions (Handout One)
  • Chart paper, sticky notes
  • Art supplies (glue, paint, markers, magazines, scissors, etc.)


  1. Anticipatory Set:

    Create an Affinity Chart using the data collected during the informal adult career survey (see Lesson One: School/Home Connection) showing careers in the three sectors: government, for profit and non-profit . See Affinity Chart Instructions (Handout One).

  2. Review with students what they learned about themselves through the personality activity. Just like “oil” lubricates a car engine, no oil in the engine means that the engine won't run. Our personality “oils” our communication to make communication work or not work effectively. Compare personality styles to the sounds of an engine that runs well and has a specific purpose. Examples may include: race cars are fast, loud and have loads of energy. Limos are quiet and smooth. SUV's are strong and forceful. Luxury cars are precision-based and have top engine performance. Once the students understand that personality is the lubricant that oils our communication, they can begin to expand their views to see the relationship of their personality traits to their personal and professional lives through their communication.

  3. Explain that character traits (ethics) are what drives the communication process and becomes the force behind communication and behavior. Discuss with students that character traits/ethics are those principles that drive the personality and therefore the communication. Therefore the basis of all true success, personally and professionally, lies in a person's character. Liken these traits to the nuts and bolts of an auto.

  4. On chart paper write these four words in large print: respect , responsibility , honesty and self-motivation . Post the charts on the wall and have students rotate past each paper, writing their own definition for each word. (Provide markers and encourage students to write large.) Lead a discussion about the most appropriate definitions. Ask students to differentiate between character traits and the personality styles.

  5. Put the learners in small groups comprised of students from various personality types, no two of the same personality type in a group. One student from each group will choose one job from each of the sectors on the Affinity Chart. Groups should link in writing personality traits and character traits for each job and informally present these to the class.

  6. With the new understanding of personality traits and character traits, students are to create a personal “name plate.” On this name plate, students will convey to others what they see as their personality and character traits in a creative art expression. Either before or after designing the name plate, the learners should write an essay including what they see will be their future life style, dreams and goals. Their personality description and philosophical point of view should be included. (Students will present their name plates as the Anticipatory Set for Lesson Three: How Can I Help You?)


Teacher observation and class participation may be used to assess the learning from this lesson.

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.I Definitions of Philanthropy
    1. Standard DP 04. Operational Characteristics of Nonprofit Organizations
      1. Benchmark HS.2 Compare and contrast the basic terms and operations of the for-profit, government, family, and civil society sectors.
  2. Strand PHIL.III Philanthropy and the Individual
    1. Standard PI 02. Careers In The Nonprofit Sector
      1. Benchmark HS.2 Explore requirements and motivations for a career in the civil society sector.