PEER PRESSURE - Random Acts of .The Random Acts of Kindness oundation Peer Pressure, Grade 8 Page

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Page 1 of 17 The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation |



Objective: Students will be able to analyze how avoiding negative peer pressure shows kindness toward themselves and others and can positively influence their mental health.

Kindness Definition: Kindness is an intrinsic quality of the heart expressed through an act of benevolence reflecting care and good will for self and others.

Kindness Concepts: Assertiveness, Integrity, Self-Discipline

Egg and Bottle Peer Pressure Activity, pp. 3-4 (15 to 20 minutes)

Glass bottle, two hard-boiled eggs (peeled), match, paper

Large, self-adhesive poster sheets RAK Journals

Peer Pressure Visual Response, p. 5(20 minutes)

Foundation for a Better Life TV spots from website: o Reach ( o Peer Pressure (

RAK Journals

Ways to Respond to Peer Pressure Activity, pp. 6-7(20 minutes)

Large, self-adhesive poster sheets; write the following on the top before class: Negative Ways People Pressure Others (on one sheet), Ways to Respond to Peer Pressure (on the other sheet)

RAK Journals


How Do You Respond to Peer Pressure? Activity, pp. 8-9(30 minutes)

What Would You Do? Situations, five or six copies, cut apart before class

Four or five soccer balls with situations from worksheet cut out and taped onto ball before class. NOTE: You will need enough balls, one for each group of five or six students, and each ball needs all six situations taped onto it.

Literacy Activity: Book Report/Presentation, p. 10(multi-day project)

Novels about teens facing tough choices or being pressured in a negative way. See list provided or allow students to choose a novel


Page 2 of 17 The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation | Peer Pressure, Grade 8

The activities in this lesson focus on a central theme and connect to different curriculum areas. Lesson activities use a variety of modalities to address different learning styles and build on each other.

Each activity includes evaluation questions to help determine how well students have internalized the lesson objective. You can discuss the questions as a class, have students work with a partner or a small group, or have students write responses in their RAK journal.

The activities also incorporate key Kindness Concepts, which can be introduced before teaching the lesson or as the concepts are discussed in the lesson. Consider displaying the Kindness Concept Posters during the unit. See the RAK Teacher Guide for information about using Kindness Concepts to create a healthy class-room environment and help students develop pro-social behaviors.

Each activity includes tips for how to adapt the curriculum to meet the needs of diverse learners. RAK also has developed Focusing Strategies and Problem-Solving Strategies to help students better regulate

their emotions, think through challenging situations, and build healthy relationships, friendships and communi-ty. See the RAK Teacher Guide for more information about incorporating those strategies into the lesson.

Revisiting the topics or questions raised during discussions regularly will expand student understanding of the concepts. Scripted explanations are provided, but feel free to use language that feels natural for you.

This lesson includes a home extension activity, which may be sent home at any point during the unit. The Common Core and Colorado P-12 Academic Standards met in this lesson are listed after the activity title.

Key is provided on pages 1417.


Teacher says: For the next few days, we are going to talk about how peer pressure can impact us. Find a partner and discuss what peer pressure means to you and what kind of negative peer pressure 8th graders experience. Allow time for students to discuss together. You can use this time to introduce the Kindness Concepts (asser-tiveness, integrity, self-discipline) and create community definitions for these concepts or share the definitions listed below. Consider using the Kindness Concept Posters for assertiveness, integrity, self-discipline as a way to reinforce learning.


Standing Up for the Rights of Others,Social Studies Activity, p. 11(multi-day project)

Websites listed in the activity

Home Extension Activity, pp.12-13 Take home activity, one sheet for each student




Assertiveness: Expressing yourself effectively and standing up for your point of view, while also respecting the rights and beliefs of others.Integrity: Acting in a truthful way, behaving properly when no one is watching.Self-Discipline: Controlling ones actions and words for the benefit of self and others.


Page 3 of 17 The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation | Peer Pressure, Grade 8


1. Teacher says: We are going to start with a science activity where we look at the impact of pressure.

2. Put peeled, boiled egg on the mouth of the bottle and ask students to make a prediction of what will happen if you try to push the egg into the bottle.

3. Then ask for a few volunteers to come to the front of the class. Tell the first student to try to push the egg into the glass bottle without breaking it, then ask the second, etc.

4. Explain that you are going to light a piece of paper and drop it in the bottle. Ask the students to make a prediction about what will happen when you drop the lit paper in the bottle and put the egg on the bottle.

5. Now take the half piece of paper and loosely roll it up. Hold the paper in a horizontal position and light one end with the match. Allow it to begin burning and then drop it down into the glass bottle. Immediately put the second hard boiled egg on top of the glass jar, with the narrower end of the egg pointed into the glass bottle. Almost immediately, the egg will be sucked down into the bottle.

6. Then ask the following questions:1) Why couldnt the volunteers push the egg into the bottle? (Answer: The egg was too big to

fit in the bottle.)2) Why was the egg sucked in once the flame was inside the bottle? (Answer: The burning

paper consumed all of the air inside the bottle and created a vacuum. The air pressure pushing down on the outside of the egg forced it into the bottle, and the vacuum pulled the egg into the bottle.)

3) Like this egg, we can resist pressure for a while, but eventually we can get sucked into situations that make us uncomfortable or that we dont want to be in. What do you think makes it difficult to resist negative peer pressure?

4) What are some ways that 8th graders pressure others to do things they dont want to do?5) What situations suck us in and make it tempting to give in to negative peer pressure?

(Possible answers: Worried what others think, friends might ditch me, feeling lonely, lack of support at home.)

6) Can peer pressure ever be a positive thing? When?7) Do you think it is important to resist peer pressure? Why or why not?

Glass bottle with a mouth small enough so that hard-boiled egg wont fit through with force

Two hard-boiled eggs (peeled), match, paper Large, self-adhesive poster sheets RAK Journals Kindness Concept Posters: Assertiveness,




Common Core: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.8.1Colorado: Comprehensive Health S.3, GLE.2, EO.c, IQ.2; Reading, Writing and Communicating S.1, GLE.1, EO.a; Science S.1, GLE.1, EO.a



Page 4 of 17 The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation | Peer Pressure, Grade 8

TIPS FOR DIVERSE LEARNERSStudents might benefit from:1. Repeating the experiment a few times and making additional predictions about how much pa-

per and flame is needed to create a vacuum.2. Creating a t-chart after the discussion with two columns: Positive Peer Pressure and Neg-

ative Peer Pressure. Have students write down experiences or thoughts they have about this topic and share their responses with a partner or in a small group.

3. Rearranging the desks so that all students can see the experiment.

Teacher asks students to write a response to the following question in their RAK journal: Write about a time when you experienced either negative or positive peer pressure and how you re-sponded.



Page 5 of 17 The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation | Peer Pressure, Grade 8


1. Teacher says: Now we are going to watch some clips about peer pressure.

2. Watch Reach clip and ask the following questions:1) What happens at the beginning of the video? (Answer: The door on the side of the truck unlatches

and scrolls up.)2) What do you think the guys in the jeep are going to do? (Answer: That they are going to steal drinks