Elementary Medal of Honor Introductory CDP lesson: What is a hero? Setting the stage for character development with classroom Medals of Honor
• Develop a basic understanding of the Medal of Honor and 6 Core Values
• Define and discuss “What is a hero?”
• Apply their understanding of “What is a hero?” by recognizing others for heroism.
Core Value Focus: Courage, Commitment, Sacrifice, Integrity, Patriotism, and Citizenship
Recipient Focus: N/A
Introductory Activity: Circle time discussion
Suggested Discussion script:
Teacher: What is a hero? (Sit in a circle and allow students to pass a sharing stone or special item
to indicate whose turn to talk, and all others listen without comment. Students may share their idea or pass.)
Teacher: A hero is many things. A hero is someone who honors their core values. A hero is someone who has
and acts out of courage, integrity, patriotism, citizenship, commitment and sacrifice. YOU are a hero. YOU are
all heroes. WE are heroes. In our class, in our school, in our community, and in our world. Our country has a
very special medal called the Medal of Honor to recognize heroes. In our class(es) we will recognize acts
of heroism with classroom medals of honor and learn more about each of these core values throughout the
school year. (As a class decide where to hang each medal.)
If applicable directly teach each of the six Core Value vocabulary words without providing definitions. Explain
that throughout the year the class will develop definitions.
Whole Group Activity:
Video: 2 Wolves: A Cherokee Story of Wisdom
Small Group Activity: Hearts for the Class
Suggested teacher script:
Teacher: In this legend and in our hearts we all have the choice of which wolf to listen to. We don’t have real
wolves in our hearts but we do have real choices to make each and every day. We have the choice to be heroes
and honor our courage (point to medal), integrity, (point to medal), patriotism, (point to medal) citizenship
(point to medal), commitment (point to medal) and sacrifice (point to medal). When you or someone you see
is being a hero by honoring these core values, I want you to share it with the class, and we will earn a heart
on our class medal. These hearts will represent the times when we make the right choice in our hearts to be heroes.
Think pair share:
Teacher: Take a moment to think about when you or someone you know was a hero. Turn to your elbow partners
Teacher: Does anyone have a hero in our class they want to nominate now? Allow students to nominate a hero
and if applicable, put a heart sticker on the appropriate medal. Discuss when the best time to nominate heroes
is, i.e. during morning meeting or closing circle, whenever the opportunity presents itself, or by writing a nomination
and putting it in a box.
Assessment: Discussion and observations
During agreed upon times, stop to discuss students or adults who see others displaying one or more of the 6 core
values. Allow students and adults to nominate and discuss when we are being heroes and add hearts to the medals.
Video: “For the heroes: a pep talk from Kid President”
6 Core Value Medal of Honor Posters
Heart stickers for class medal recipients.
Talking tool (stone, ball, small stuffed animal, microphone) to be used for whip share.
Quotes on the focus core value:
“Which wolf are you feeding?” 2 Wolves: A Cherokee Story of Wisdom
“Which wolf would a hero feed?” 2 Wolves: A Cherokee Story of Wisdom