Helping Your Students Take Initiative and Accept Responsibility


This Sharing Circle topic comes from the elementary resource book, Caring and Capable KidsIt  lets your students explore the differences between being asked or told to do something and choosing to do it just because it needs to be done. The topic also helps your students see the importance of taking personal responsibility for getting things done. Finally, students get to actually experience the positive feelings and other rewards for both taking initiative and accepting responsibility. The topic for this Sharing Circle is, A Time I Helped Without Being Asked…

  Here’s Your Monday Morning Sharing Circle.


A Time I Helped Without
Being Asked


The students will:
— describe the difference between choosing to do something and being told to do it.
— state the importance of assuming responsibility for things that need to be done.

Introduce the Topic:

Today we’re going to talk about taking the initiative — about accepting responsibility without being told to by an adult.  Our topic is, “A Time I Helped Without Being Asked.”

Think of a time when you saw something that needed to be done and took it upon yourself to do it.  No one had to tell you or ask you or even hint to you that it needed doing.  Maybe you walked into the kitchen one evening and saw a sink full of dirty dishes and, instead of just ignoring the mess, you cleaned it up.  Or maybe you saw someone drop and spill or break something and you got down and helped pick up the pieces.  Perhaps a neighbor was searching up and down the street for a missing pet and you joined in.  Or you might have stayed to help a teacher straighten up a classroom after school.  You can probably think of lots of times when you decided on your own to take responsibility.  Tell us about one of those times.  The topic is, “A Time I Helped Without Being Asked.” 

Discussion Questions:

1.  How did you feel when you helped without being asked?
2.  How would your feelings have been different if you had been asked, or even ordered, to do the same thing?
3.  What does it mean to be a responsible person?
4.  Why is it important for each of us to take responsibility for things that need to be done?

Do you want more information?
• Leading a Sharing Circle • Sharing Circle Rules
• Books and Resources   • Free Activities   • Subscribe

Here’s How It’s Done

Gather everyone into a circle.

Explain the rules for sharing, and get agreement from everyone that they will follow the rules.

Sharing Circle Rules:

•  Everyone gets a turn to share, including the leader.
•  You can skip your turn if you wish.
•  Listen to the person who is sharing.
•  There are no interruptions, probing, put-downs, or gossip.
•  Share the time equally.

After everyone has shared, who wants to share, ask the discussion questions.

Get more in-depth information here.

Just click HERE to open a fully reproducible PDF of this Sharing Circle activity…

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Counselor in the Classroom

Having Impact!

Effective counseling can have a powerful impact on the ability of all students to learn, and to manage themselves in the classroom, the school, and all other areas of their lives. As counselors, we hold the keys to some of the most vital, sought-after, life-skills that people of any age can develop. In a lifetime, many individuals never acquire these skills, yet we have the power to teach them to children! Not just the children who are referred to us, but all children.

Shaping the Culture

Counselors can help students feel comfortable in the school environment, develop positive self-concepts, and rediscover the motivation to learn. We have the ability to enhance open communication and promote cooperative work skills. We can create a renaissance in interpersonal relations by developing listening, speaking, and observation skills, and promoting tolerance and the ability of young people to get along well with others.

Making It Real

In addition to training in life-skills, counselors can help students make continuous links between classroom learning and the career futures that await them, and prepare students to deal with change. We can show students the path of responsibility, teaching them to be safe, to resist substance abuse, and to shun violence and bullying. Through our efforts students can develop an entire repertoire of skills associated with problem-solving, decision-making, assertiveness, and conflict resolution.

How It’s Done…

Written especially for counselors, Counselor in the Classroom, offers a collection of learning activities designed to optimally utilize the skills of Counselors and bring those skills into the classroom by integrating counseling and guidance with classroom instruction.

Something for You

In this week’s blog we’ve chosen a Counselor-led activity from Counselor in the Classroom dealing with friendship.

You can check the book out HERE, and you can download the activity and student experience sheet HERE.

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Thanks so much for reading!


PS: If a friend forwarded this to you, you can just sign up to get your own weekly Innerchoice Publishing Activity Blog.