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We're Not That Different After All

Main Core Tie

Health Education - 1st Grade

Time Frame

1 class periods of 30 minutes each

Group Size

Large Groups


Utah LessonPlans


Students will appreciate diversity and demonstrate kindness through language and actions.




  • Two copies of the "ME Heart"
  • Please select a book about differences from your own media center such as --
    • Hautzig, Deborah, Tom Cooke, and Jim Henson. Why Are You so Mean to Me? New York: Random House/Children's Television Workshop, 1986.
    • Lester, Helen, and Lynn Munsinger. Hooway for Wodney Wat. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 1999.
  • sample size toothpaste tube full of toothpaste
  • large sheet of butcher paper labeled "I Saw Someone Do Something Good"


  • "We're Not That Different After All" from the CD Take a Stand


  • diversity
  • "careless words"
  • "valuing differences"
  • courteous

Instructional Procedures

  1. "We're Not That Different After All"
    • Sing the song "We're Not That Different After All."
    • Discuss the meaning of the song.

  2. Similarities and Differences
    • How are people the same?
    • How are people different?

  3. Hurt and Sad

    What we say to others can affect how they think and feel.
    Read and discuss the book, Why Are You so Mean to Me?

    • What happened in the story?
    • What kinds of statements are builder statements and made Grover feel happy?
    • What kinds of statements were breaker statements and made Grover feel sad?
    • What caused Grover to use a breaker statement and say a mean thing to Big Bird?
    • How was Big Bird a builder?
    • When was Oscar a builder?
    • How do these kinds of comments affect people in our class?
    • What do some students say that might hurt others?
    • How can a boy or girl be a builder and help when someone is sad?
    • Using a tube of toothpaste, push out the paste onto a piece of paper.
    • The toothpaste represents mean things that might be said about another person.
    • Ask a student to put the toothpaste back into the tube.
    • Ask the student to say "Just kidding," while he or she tries to put the toothpaste into the tube.
    • What was hard about trying to put the toothpaste back into the tube?
    • Does saying words like "Just kidding," help?
    • How are mean words like this toothpaste of the paper?
    • How easy is it to "take back" mean words?
    • Does pretending to joke make mean words any less hurtful?
    • Words once spoken cannot be taken back.

  4. Negative Words Hurt
    • Display a "Me Heart" graphic.
    • Say negative words.
    • Cut or tear off a piece of the heart every time a mean word is spoken.
    • Replace the torn "Me Heart" with another whole copy.
    • Change the mean words to positive statements and don't tear the paper.
    • Point out that positive words do not create negative and destructive feelings.

  5. Positive Words Build
    • Each student writes his or her name on the back of a "Me" worksheet.
    • Pass the "ME" worksheet around the room
    • Individual students write positive comments to the owner of the worksheet and then pass it along to the next student.
    • Before returning the "Me" worksheet to their owners, the teacher may wish to review the completed worksheets to insure only positive comments were written on the squares.

  6. "I Saw Someone Do Something Good."

    Mount a large piece of butcher paper (6 by 8 feet) on a wall. Tell the students that for the next two weeks you want them to keep an eye open for class members doing positive, constructive, kind, and courteous things at school or on the way to and from school. On the butcher paper, have students write the name and comment about the person who was observed doing a positive and helpful thing. Some teachers use sticky notes rather than writing on the butcher paper.

    Take time at the end of the day to fill and discuss the "I Saw Someone Doing Something Good" chart. Talk about the positive and good things people have observed. Discuss how people feel when good things are said and written about them, instead of negative things.

    While it seems to be a common practice in society to focus on negative behavior, encourage students to continually seek out positive things that others do and offer positive feedback. Look for ways people are builders.

    Emphasize that it is important to like oneself. One good way to accomplish this is by being kind to others.


This lesson is part of the Utah State Board of Education Prevention Dimensions program.

Created: 12/20/2017
Updated: 01/15/2020