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1st & 2nd Grade Cooperation Lesson

This lesson was done with first and second grade students at my elementary school internship site.

Grade Level:              1st & 2nd Grades


Topic:                     Cooperation


Materials:              “The Ant and the Elephant” by Bill Peet

                             Paper elephant-head pieces (enough for entire class)

                             Crayons, colored pencils, or markers




Objectives:             1. Students will be able to identify what cooperation and teamwork are

                             2. Students will work together on an art project

3. Students will reflect on how to be a good team member based on the activity experience


Activities:              1. Introduction

Ask if anyone has ever been a part of a group or team.  Are there any other times they have been asked to work together (at home or at school)?  Does anybody know what cooperation means?  Does cooperating make things easier or more difficult?  Why?


                             2. Story

Read the book “The Ant and the Elephant”.  Tell the students to look out for examples of characters who are cooperative and who are not cooperative.  What did they do?  What could they have done better? Discuss after the story is read.


                             3. Elephant Art Project

                             Show the students the elephant face you made.  Explain how it took a long time to do it by yourself.  Tell students that since we don’t have a lot of time today, we’re going to work in groups to make the job of making elephant faces go faster.  Have students count off so they are in groups of five.  Distribute 2 ears, 2 sides of the face, and one trunk to each group.  Tell the students to take 5-10 minutes to color in and cut out their elephant part.  Remind students to share crayons and scissors. 


                            4. Conclusion

                            Help groups tape together their elephant face as they are finish.  Discuss how it felt to
                            cooperate.  Ask questions like, “How did it feel to cooperate?”, “Do you think one person
                            could have done the whole project in 10 minutes?”, “Do you see how even though all the
                            parts look different, they can come together to make one face?”  Emphasize how being
                            part of a team and working together can make big projects a lot easier!