Students will:

  • Understand the meaning of integrity
  • Generate real-life situations that demonstrate integrity

60 minutes

Materials Needed:

  • The Empty Pot by Demi
  • Empty Pot template
  • Poster paper
  • Scraps of construction paper
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Colored pencils or crayons

Introductory Activity: 
Ask students what they know about the word integrity, and write on the board any ideas they generate. If they have trouble generating ideas, give some prompts.

Read The Empty Pot by Demi, a traditional Chinese folk tale. Ask students the following questions:

  • After hearing the story, what do you think integrity means?
  • How do you think the main character’s actions showed integrity?
  • What do you think the moral of the story might be? 

Add some key answers or ideas to the list on the board.

Whole Group Activity:
Generate a list of real-life situations when students or staff at school have shown integrity.

If students are having trouble thinking of examples, consider finishing the lesson the next day. Challenge students to observe and find examples of integrity after class, and continue the discussion the next day.

Individual/Small Group Activity:
Hand out a copy of the Empty Pot Template to each student or to each group/pair of students. Have students use the lines on the pot to write about a time they or someone they know used integrity. Next, have the students use construction paper scraps, scissors, and glue to cut out a seed of any shape, size, or color and glue it onto the pot. If time allows, invite students to color the background, using The Empty Pot as inspiration.

Concluding Activity:
Have students share their work with the class.

Discussion, Empty Pot template work, and presentation

Extended Activity:
Assemble students into small groups, and have them role-play the scene between Ping and the Emperor. Students should present an understanding that Ping was prepared to show the Emperor his empty pot because he was honest. The Emperor should recognize his integrity and reward him for it.