Classroom Resources for Teaching Integrity and Principles
Use these resources for teaching integrity in your classroom. The books, videos and websites focus on being principled and knowing what is right and wrong.
IB Learner Profile Trait: Principled
According to the IB Learner Profile, being principled means being someone who will “act with integrity and honesty, with a strong sense of fairness and justice, and with respect for the dignity and rights of people everywhere. [They] take responsibility for [their actions and their consequences.”
Explaining a principled attitude is not an easy task as it is an abstract concept for children. Being principled means knowing what is right and wrong and doing the right thing even when no one is watching. It takes courage and willpower as there will always be others who question a principled course of action or will try to persuade against it. This is especially true of children.
Having integrity and being principled is hard, which is why children need good role models, at home and school. They also need opportunities to discuss the consequences of their actions and their effects on others.
Use these resources to help your students be open-minded in their dealings with others and take responsibility for their own failures rather than blaming others. Encourage children to be fair by treating others in ways they wish to be treated.
In a previous post, Best Books about Integrity and Being Principled, I researched a list of picture books you can use to teach integrity and a principle attitude in your classroom.
Characteristics of Principled Children
We can also be on the lookout for balanced traits in our students. The characteristics, which will exhibit in different ways depending on their age, include:
- Honesty with themselves and others
- Accountability and reflecting on behaviour
- Understanding the need for rules and following them
- Care and compassion
Key Benefits to Being Principled
There are many great reasons for ensuring you and your students have a principled attitude:
- Reduces risky behaviour
- Fewer errors and limits need to edit work multiple time
- Experiences less stress
- Looking forward to making progress, personally and academically
- Shows respect independently
- Can celebrate and enjoy achievements and positive relationships
Principled Teaching Resources
In this section, you will find a wealth of resources to support your students in being principles. Click through to view picture book ideas, activities and lesson plans related to fairness, integrity, being trustworthy, open-minded and showing impartiality. You will find a list of balanced books, short videos, online resources and balanced reading related questions.
Principled Picture Books
These integrity books all relate to being principled, fair, impartial and trustworthy. Some books below show characters demonstrating fairness and integrity. Others focus on characters listening to their conscience and reflecting the effects of their actions. You can click on the book cover for a synopsis of the book and related online resources.
After the list, there is a list of principled related questions to use during a read-aloud session.
Principled Discussion Questions
- How would it feel to compromise your principles?
- Tell me how [character] showed integrity.
- How do you think it made [character] feel to stand up for their principles?
- Do you think it was difficult for [character] to be honest? why?
- What was the effect of [character] actions?
- What words would you use to describe [character] actions? (true, liar, responsible, fair, trustworthy, reliable, principled, loyal, respectful, just)
- How could [character] be more principled?
- How did [character’s] principled behaviour affect others in the story?
- How did [character’s] integrity impact the events of the story?
- Did [character] act fairly and honestly?
- Did [character] they follow the rules? If not, what were the consequences?
- How did [character] feel when things were going wrong?
- What did [character] do to improve the situation?
Integrity and Principled Resources Online
- Bright Horizons: Teaching Integrity: Raising Children with Character and Principle
- Harvard University: Encouraging Honesty
- Kids’ Health: Telling Lies
- Kids and Values: Fairness Lessons
- Learning to Give: Freedom, Fairness and Philanthropy
- PBS Parents: Teaching Children to Have Integrity
- PBS Parents: Teaching Your Five-Year-Old the Importance of Honesty
- Psychology Today: Talking with Kids about Fairness
- Psychology Today: Teaching Children to Be Honorable
- Psychology Today: Teaching Your Kids to Be Honest
- Roots of Action: Integrity: How Families Teach and Live Their Values
- Scholastic: Integrity
- Talking Trees: What is Honesty?
- Think Virtues: Why Is Honesty Important?
- Yes*Safe Choices: Tips to Help Teach Honesty
- Yes*Safe Choices: Tips to Help Teach Fairness
- Edutopia: Creating a Culture of Integrity in the Classroom
- Good Character: Teaching Guide for Fairness for K-5
- Kids and Values: Truth and Trust Activities
- Kids Health: Sportsmanship Teacher’s Guide
- Learning to Give: Living Integrity
- Livestrong: Fun Activities for Kids on Telling the Truth
- Psychology Today: Integrity in the Classroom
- Random Acts of Kindness: Honesty and Integrity (Grade 5)
- Salon: Do kids have a fundamental sense of fairness?
- Scholastic: Ages & Stages: Learning About Fairness
- Talking with Trees: Honesty, Conscience Lesson Plan
- Talking with Trees: Character Education Lesson Plan- Honesty Worksheet
- Talking with Trees: Character Education Lesson Plan- Honesty young students
- Teaching Tolerance: Treat Others the Way You Want to be Treated Learning Plan
- Teaching Tolerance: What does it mean to be unfair? Learning Plan
- Teaching Tolerance: Responding to Unfairness Learning Plan
- Teaching Tolerance: The Difference Between Unfairness and Discipline Learning Plan
Integrity and Principled Discussion Videos
These short videos can be used as discussion starters for talking about being principled. Watch the video before playing them to your students. Some of them are simple while others are more complex or abstract.
Remember to check out the post Best Books about Integrity and Being Principled for even more principled and integrity books.
What books, videos or resources do you to teach the IB trait principled in your classroom? Let me know in the comments!
- Best Books about Integrity and Being Principled
- Discover the Benefits of Picture Books for Older Readers
- 6 Powerful Strategies on How to Choose Books to Read
- How to Use Picture Books to Teach Cause and Effect
- Children’s Books & Resources for the IB Learner Profile Traits
- 5 Stages of Reading Development
- Responsible Decision-Making Books and Resources
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