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Importance of Families 3: Teens and Senior Citizens

Life Skills:

  • Character
  • Social & Civic Responsibility

Time Frame:
2 class periods that run 45 minutes each.

Group Size:
Small Groups


Students will explore the importance of teen relationships with senior citizens.

Main Curriculum Tie:
Teen Living
Strand 2 Standard 2

Discuss how relationships with parents, siblings and the elderly affect families, careers and communities. Explore methods of building relationships of trust and respect with parents/guardians.

Career Connections:

  • Social, Humanitarian

PowerPoint on elderly, Video: "The Mailbox", cotton balls, items for memory tray, red glasses, tape, Unit packet from previous lessons.

Background For Teachers:
After teaching unit for 2 days, you will have an idea of what students interactions with families are and what the needs are also. Be ready to lead discussions on similarities between teens and senior citizens, common stereotypes of senior citizens, and contributions seniors make to family and community.

Student Prior Knowledge:
Students will have completed days 1 & 2 of Importance of Family Unit. Students will have personal knowledge of their relationships with significant senior citizens in their lives.

Intended Learning Outcomes:
Students will explore their relationships with the senior citizens in their lives and formulate ways in which those relationships can be improved.

Instructional Procedures:
Introduction: (5 minutes)
Have students relate what they learned about their families and themselves. Review last two lessons as they tie into today's lesson. Define and discuss "extended family", and how senior citizens fit into their particular families. The students will discuss contributions seniors make to community and family. Also discuss any stereotypes they think people may have about senior citizens.

PowerPoint. quiz, and notes: (20 minutes)
Identify significant seniors in your own life and tell a short story about the importance of them. Show PowerPoint on elderly and have students complete the quiz as they watch the PowerPoint. Students will need a lined sheet of paper and will answer the following questions (quiz)

  1. What do we really think of the elderly?
  2. What is considered old?
  3. What are some stereotypes of seniors and teens?
Discuss after PowerPoint. Students may add to their answers during discussion, if teacher desires.

Activities: (30 minutes)
Have students prep themselves to be "old" ~ cotton balls in ears, red glasses on, tape on fingers. Then do the activities: start by playing "Simon Says". Have students react after game. Then have students take out a piece of paper. Bring out the covered tray and explain that they will have 1 minute to memorize what is on the tray before it is covered again. After the minute is up, recover the tray and ask them to list as many of the items as possible. Discuss what it was like to be old.

Video~"The Mailbox" (35 minutes)
Have students watch the video "The Mailbox". Once the video is over, have students write their grandparents a letter. Encourage them to mail the letter and to call their grandparents tonight.

Conclusion: (5 minutes)
Discuss the importance of teen's relationships with senior citizens. Tie this discussion in with the concept of the similarities between senior citizens and teens. (self esteem issues, stereotypes, loneliness, need for interaction with others, etc)


Strategies For Diverse Learners:
Diverse learners may have more trouble than most of the class with the "elderly" simulation, because of the decreased mobility. Be sensitive to these students and be ready to offer extra assistance as well as to insure their safety.

Gifted students may want to conduct personal interviews with elderly family members and/or neighbors. Such students should come up with a list of questions to ask and summarize to the class/teacher with a verbal or written report.

Assessment Plan:
Students will be assessed through the unit packet, quizzes and class discussion.

Video: The Mailbox

Jamie May
Laura Schiers
Shelli Barnum
Amy-Jo Stanford

Created Date :
Aug 04 2010 10:18 AM