First, this is an incredible writing activity that really engages students. My kids produced some of the best writing they have ever done in my classroom through this project and built character in the process. It includes all directions, examples and all the printable you need.
It is also a tried and proven unit that changed the game in my classroom management with the most challenging group of students I'd ever had!
This plan started my 6th year of teaching when I had the most challenging group of 4th graders I’d ever seen. As I started learning about their stories and their lives outside of school I started to realize that I had a group of really good kids who had TERRIBLE self images as a result of trauma, abuse, low academic achievement, etc.…
I started doing research about how to help them and started learning that building healthy relationships and positive self identity was the #1 and many accounts said, “the only” way to help them heal and achieve at school.
Nothing else was working. Behavior charts were a JOKE. Taking away recess didn’t matter at all to my kids, they didn’t care about grades or rewards. Class points were pointless and meant nothing. I was at the bottom of my teacher tricks by about week
So I tried something different and, you guys, IT WORKED!!!! By the end of the year my class felt like a family! I had the highest test data in my school and classroom management was far less of my day-to-day than before I started this unit. It DOES take away from “academic” time but it significantly improved the quality of our academic time and was worth EVERY SINGLE MINUTE!!!!
Give it a try, tweak it to work for your kids and I’d LOVE to hear from you about how it goes!