Inside: Use the bubble gum kindness activity to teach sel curriculum in a fun, hands-on way.
One of the most fun things to do when I was a kid was to search around for a nickel or a quarter to put in the gumball machines at stores and restaurants. We always anticipated what color would fall down into our hands.
And while it never tasted as good as the watermelon Hubba Bubba my grandma would buy for me at the grocery store, it was always a treat to chew bubble gum as a kid.
Kids love bubble gum because it is usually saved as a treat. And even now that my kids are older, they still think of gum as a treat.
So this Bubble Gum Kindness Activity is a perfect year-round social emotional game perfect for centers
Why Social Emotional Learning is Important
Social Emotional Learning is a crucial part of any classroom’s lesson plans.
Related: Why We Should Teach SEL
It teaches our students problem solving skills, critical thinking skills and positive relationship skills. It builds up their Emotional Intelligence, helps bully-proof them, and research has shown that it improves their academic success.
Related: How Teachers Can Prevent Bullying
But to make social emotional learning and character education effective, we have to make it consistent, set clear expectations from our students, intentionally teach them the skills they need to be kind, and make it fun.
What’s Included in the Kindness Bubble Gum Kind or Sort Activity:
- 24 gumballs with kindness or unkindness clipart in color
- 24 gumballs with kindness or unkindness clipart in black and white
- Kind and Unkind sorting gumball machines in color and black and white
- Kindness worksheet to help kids show what they know and determine what is kind and what is not kind in color and black and white
- 2 writing sheets: 1 for early writers/prewriters and 1 for writers.
How to Use the Kindness Bubble Gum Activity
1. Purchase and print and laminate the gumball cards and the Kind or Not Kind Gumball Machines. If you print them in black and white, you can color in the cards first.
Offer kids skin color crayons so the clipart has diverse kiddos.
2. Cut apart the cards
3. Go over the pictures on the cards to ensure children understand what the picture depicts. You can use these as discussion starters before or after the activity.
4. The students will sort the cards by kind actions or unkind actions by placing the cards near the correct gumball machine.
They can work in small groups in centers, independently, or as a whole group with a pocket chart.
5. To follow up the activity, students can complete the worksheet to show their understanding.
6. To connect to writing and language arts studies, draw a picture/write how they will choose to be kind this season. Prewriters can dictate their answers and then draw a picture.