In Chapter 5 of The Good Eggs, we first learn about cooperation through the compromise the Eggs made when trying to decide which play to choose for their annual Albumen Players performance for their community. In her young wisdom, Seggourney said something very important as she suggested that the Eggs choose their parts for the play. She said, “If we all cooperate, things will go smoothly.” At this point in the story, Seggourney was right and Ms. Poach admired the classes’ cooperation with one another.
During rehearsal, however, something goes wrong and Greggory realizes that Peggy, Reggie’s cousin, didn’t complete the task of fastening the hooks on one of the props. Because of this negligence, Benedict could have been seriously hurt. Peggy didn’t do this on purpose; she was distracted by a family issue that was causing her a lot of turmoil. Once again, Seggourney comes up with a good idea and encourages Peggy to talk to her parents in order to encourage cooperation in their family, especially between her parents.
Cooperation always makes things run more smoothly. Sometimes cooperation means compromising.
What’s this activity about?
Cooperating with each other makes tasks easier and more fun!
What supplies do I need?
Banner paper (for a mural), several easy puzzles, rope or bands for three-legged race
Seggourney suggested to the class that if they all cooperate, they can get the parts of the play figured out and begin working on them. She asked the class, they all agreed, and the play responsibilities were divided among the group.
Make a school collage or mural. Let the students decide upon four or five categories they want to list to represent their school, e.g. favorite subjects, school colors or mascot, school spirit, school sports. Then have each student choose only one category. They will be responsible for bringing in pictures for their chosen part of the collage (or if you do a mural, they will need to come up with a drawing for their category). Once the collage or mural is complete, hang it somewhere for the whole school to see.
Peggy’s mind was occupied with family troubles. She didn’t see the importance of fastening the hooks to the beanstalk, which resulted in Benedict’s fall. Greggory told Peggy that even the smallest jobs are important and it takes a team to make things work.
Get several easy puzzles and give each student one piece. They are to figure out which puzzle piece goes to which puzzle. They will need to cooperate with each other in order to complete their puzzle. The first group of students to complete a puzzle should win a small prize!
The Eggs felt bad for Peggy and tried to cheer her up. They suggested she ask her parents to cooperate with each other in order to reach a common goal.
If you are able, bring your students outside. Relay races or three-legged races are good examples of cooperative games. Imagine the joy the students will feel as they work together for a win!
Cooperation takes work and it takes commitment. We expect our students to cooperate at school. That same expectation should be true for us in every arena of life. One good measure of our success at cooperation is our ability to compromise, and sometimes forego the desire to get our way. The best way we can teach our students about cooperation is to make compromises from time to time.
This doesn’t mean we have to compromise our values, morals, or beliefs, but are there little things in our lives where we can suggest a compromise? It may not turn out that everyone involved gets exactly what they want, but surely “things will go more smoothly,” as Seggourney reminds us in The Good Eggs.
As with all virtues, cooperation is contagious - the best way to teach our students about cooperation is to model the art of compromise for them!
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