Cooperation Character Education: Teaching Activities
I love it when my students and I are on the same team. It builds a healthy class culture and nurtures a safe environment for all. If you’ve been looking for fun and engaging activities to teach cooperation, this post includes lessons, activities, and ideas to help you! This post is full of cooperation character education ideas to incorporate in your classroom.
My cooperation character education resource shown below contains an assortment of materials that will help you teach cooperation to your students. Check out all the activities below! And don’t forget to look at the full resource here.
Cooperation Character Education Pacing Guide
Use this pacing guide to map out your entire month of lessons on cooperation. This will help you set aside enough time to complete as many or as few of the activities as you would like with students.
Cooperation Character Education Parent Notes
Parent letters are very effective for teaching cooperation character education in the classroom. It’s a great way for parents to get involved so they can reinforce the character education lessons at home.
The letter in my resource provides parents and families with tools to help them explain, model, and praise cooperation in the home. Additionally, it includes a list of books and movies that families can enjoy together.
Cooperation Bulletin Board
Whenever I begen a new character education trait, I like to create a bulletin board. It’s a great way to introduce and define a new topic and start class discussions. In my cooperation resource, I include everything you’ll need to introduce cooperation to your students with a beautiful display. Keep this display in your classroom for the entire month that you are teaching students the value of cooperation.
Cooperation Picture Books
Read alouds are always a great place to spark discussions. Some of the best conversations have been from reading a book together. If you are looking to teach cooperation, I put together a great collection of options. These will help expose your students to different types of cooperation and help show what it looks like. Picture books and read alouds are such a wonderful way to give students examples that they can use to develop conversation about cooperation.
Cooperation Anchor Chart
This anchor chart will help you introduce cooperation and create a useful reference for your students. It’s a great way to keep learning accessible to students! Students can refer back to this anchor chart as they respond to questions, work independently, and contribute to discussions.
Anchor charts are a great activity to do with students after introducing your bulletin board on cooperation. It’s also a great activity to accompany a mentor text or read aloud. Because the anchor chart has a discussion question, I believe students will get the most benefit from doing it together as a class.
I love using posters so that students have a visual definition. My cooperation character education resource includes four different posters that define cooperation. Each has the same message with different clip art that shows examples of cooperation. I made sure to include clip art with multicultural children to reflect the diverse learners in our classrooms.
There are so many ways you can use posters. Hang them with your bulletin board display, or hang them around your classroom. You might even create a display in the hallway. Students can keep copies of the poster at their desk, or you might create folder covers so the students see it throughout the month.
A cooperation calendar is a great way to encourage students to do something cooperative throughout the month. I made these calendars with the goal of building positive habits. Hopefully, students will go through each day thinking about how they can show cooperation even after they finish the calendar.
These calendars are editable so you can change the month, customize the acts of cooperation to fit your students, and make different versions of the calendar so that students are doing different acts of cooperation than their classmates each day.
I like to take a few minutes each day to talk about the day’s act of cooperation. Give students examples of ways ot complete the act of cooperation or have students give their own examples. When students have completed their act, they can color the square.
Cooperation Doodle Notes
A doodle coloring reflection can help students think about cooperation and different ways they can show it. You can include reflection questions, examples of respect, fun quotes, and doodles for students to color. If you take a look at my resource, I include four reflection questions, multiple examples of cooperation , fun sayings for students to remember to be cooperation, as well as doodles to color.
Use these after reading a mentor text, or right after introducing your bulletin board. I also like to use these after reader’s theater or discussions. Once students finish coloring the doodles and answering the questions, hang the completed pages around the room or hallway for a colorful display.
Cooperation Partner Draw Activity
This fun activity puts students into groups of two to work together on creating a cohesive drawing. Students will have to cooperate to plan a design, take turns drawing, and provide encouragement to one another.
The drawing activity is broken into three time blocks of just a few minutes each. A time is set for each partner to have a turn, and the final couple of minutes are for the partners to work together. The student assignment reminds students to cooperate and encourage one another as they complete the picture.
Tallest Tower Cooperation Activity
Another fun activity is to divide students in groups of 3-5 and have them build the tallest tower with index cards. There’s a twist, though. Each person has to build the tower with one hand behind their back! Students will receive a set of building equipment and a planning page so they can figure out a design and strategy. There’s also a reflection question page so each student has a chance to reflect on the group’s cooperation while building.
I absolutely love how this activity comes together and helps support a positive classroom culture. Each student receives their own “block” for the quilt. In the middle, students will draw an example of cooperation. In each corner, students will answer how they would cooperate in each situation. Once colored, students will attach their image to a piece of colored paper.
After students have completed their cooperation quilt and mounted them to colored paper, the quilt pieces will be connected. This will create a larger classroom quilt. Once assembled, you can even use marker to make “thread marks” between squares. It makes a beautiful display for the hallway or bulletin board.
Use quotes to help inspire cooperation in your class community. Each week you spend teaching about cooperation, share a new quote with students. In my cooperation resource, I include five different quotes with three short-answer questions to help students reflect on the meaning. I selected quotes that have a unique perspective and will help you have great discussions!
Cooperation scenarios allow students to place themselves in new situations and think about ways to be cooperative. These are great to inspire meaningful conversation with students. Students can learn a lot from each other as they work through these scenarios. I recommend using these as a whole-class activity or small-group discussion.
I’ve included eight different scenarios that place the reader in the story. There are also discussion questions at the end of each scenario. AND I have these in various sizes: large posters, smaller sized better suited for printers, and individual pages with lines.
Cooperation Readers Theater
These readers theater scripts are such a great tool for promoting cooperation in the classroom and at home. They allow students to get creative and create memorable experiences about cooperation. As a reading activity, this will also help with fluency, comprehension, and speaking skills.
There are three scripts for students to read and perform.
Road Trip: In this story, students will play members of the Murphy family on a road trip. Unfortunately, the family car stalls, but the Murphy family jumps into action. Students will learn how to cooperate as a family and overcome a problem.
Scouts Who Serve: In this story, students will play members of a scout group who need to come up with an idea for a service project. Their scout leader, Captain Terry, helps them figure out a project that incorporates something each scout is passionate about. This play is a great example of how to cooperate and contribute to a group project.
Coyote Brings Fire: In this story, students will play different characters in a folktale. This story explains how a group of animals work together to steal the secret of fire and save humans from freezing in the winter. By the end of this story, your students will see how cooperation requires everyone to play a part and contribute.
Cooperation Writing Prompts
Writing prompts encourage students to write about cooperation in a thoughtful and creative way. They are also a great tool to help students reflect on ways to be cooperative.
In my cooperation resource, there are five writing prompts that encourage students to reflect and write about cooperation. They include:
- Describing how people in the school cooperate, including different roles, achieving goals, and what might happen if they weren’t cooperative.
- A creative prompt about obtaining their dream job and what it might be like to interact with the team of people involved.
- Students think about a time they had to cooperate with others and reflect on the common goal, who was involved, and what challenges were overcome.
- Students create a story about two enemies who discover they have to get along and cooperate in order to achieve a goal.
- A funny and creative writing piece where the body parts have decided to stop cooperating due to mutual agitation at the stomach.
I’ve also included a bulletin board, writing paper, and clipart to turn this into a display.
Love what you see?
The individual pillars (kindness, respect, responsibility, courage, cooperation, empathy, generosity, perseverance, friendship, and integrity) of character education each cover a month of the school year. Each pillar of my Character Education or SEL Curriculum is filled with meaningful lessons, materials, hands-on activities, anchor charts, bulletin board materials, parent letters, and more that will set you up for the entire year.