In Chapter 12, the final chapter of Book 1, the Eggs invite Benedict to join their families on their annual camping trip. Benedict gets permission to bring his dog Scrambler, but fails to bring him in his cage as requested. In the car ride to the camp, Benedict is being very demanding and rude. Even though Benedict promised he would use his manners, he continued to be a problem with the Eggs at camp. Instead of helping set up camp, Benedict went to the camp’s game room and left the other Eggs to take care of Scrambler. The Eggs all tried to convince Benedict of the importance of using manners. Throughout the ordeal at the campground, Benedict kept getting annoyed by some little Eggs that kicked sand in his roasted marshmallow and woke him up playing tag. All he could think about was their lack of manners, then all of sudden he realized his own lack of manners were causing the same kind of frustration among the Eggs and their parents. He realized how much the Eggs have been helping him throughout the year to always try to think of others. He finally realized the importance of being a Good Egg!
Good manners are good habits; the more we practice them, manners will become second nature.
What’s this activity about?
Using manners is another way of showing respect to others.
What supplies do I need?
“Manners Quiz”, Mural Paper
Benedict was so excited to go on the camping trip, he forgot to use his manners. He did not properly care for Scrambler, he was obnoxious during the car ride, and he did not help set up camp when they arrived.
Take a “Manners Quiz.” Make up five or six questions (perhaps pertaining to Benedict’s behavior, or just general manners questions for your school, etc.) Make the quiz multiple choice and/or true and false. Give the quiz orally and have the students raise their hands for the correct answer. Also, ask the students for alternative choices or other ways to handle the situations in your questions politely. This should spark some lively discussion on manners!
The Good Eggs tried to point out Benedict’s poor manners during the trip. They told him he cannot only think of himself; he must use his manners to think of others, too. Benedict finally realized this when he became annoyed at some little Eggs kicking sand on his roasted marshmallow and waking him up early in the morning.
Has someone ever annoyed you by not using manners? Do some role playing with the students. Have one student be the “polite” child, while the other student is the “rude” child. Have them act out a short
scenario (taking a crayon off a desk, cutting in front of the lunch line, speaking out of turn, etc.) Then have them turn the same scenario around, showing how the situation should play out, with both students using manners.
Once Benedict realized how rude he was during the camping trip, he changed his ways. He began to help around the camp and use his words politely. The trip became much more enjoyable for all. At the end of the story, Benedict realized the importance of being a Good Egg and his friends followed his lead by reading to children at the hospital.
Be a role model! Get a large silhouette of a child (or trace one of your students on mural paper). Write the words “Role Model” across the cut-out’s chest. Then ask your students for words that pertain to a role model (manners, polite, patience, kindness, etc.) Write the words (or have your students write the words) on the cut-out. Hang it in your classroom. You can even name the cut-out if you like!
We have probably all come across a student like Benedict at one time or another. You think to yourself, who raised that kid? How could his parents not teach him manners? Sometimes the opposite is true. At times we are amazed at how well-mannered some of our students are, especially on field trips. Did he just say “thank you?” Did she just say “please?” Not all children learn “their manners” in the home which means, as teachers, we are called to pick up the slack. A really well-developed habit should dictate that the same behavior happens everywhere, all the time. If we help our students develop the good habit of manners, the better the chance they will carry these manners outside of our classroom and into life. Using good manners is another way of showing respect for others. If we help our students to see that having good manners is another form of respect for others and how good manners can fall right in line with the universal axiom, “treat others as you want to be treated,” it just may help them to be more diligent with their manners.
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