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Life Isn't Always Fair/Grades 2-5
Life Isn't Always Fair/Grades 2-5Life Isn't Always Fair/Grades 2-5Life Isn't Always Fair/Grades 2-5Life Isn't Always Fair/Grades 2-5Life Isn't Always Fair/Grades 2-5Life Isn't Always Fair/Grades 2-5
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Life Isn't Always Fair/Grades 2-5
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Every adult has heard children whine, "That's Not Fair!"

They hear it at home when a child wants something and doesn’t get it or another child gets something and someone is left out. They hear it at school for the same reasons. For some reason, children believe life is always supposed to be fair. The truth is life is not always fair and every person needs to learn and accept this fact. The lessons in this book help children understand this reality.

Life Isn’t Always Fair includes the original story, Fair Is Where Grandma Took Her Pickles In The Fall and accompanying lesson plans that deal with the topic of fairness-. In the story, the author shares her own and her sisters’ disappointments when one gets something and the others do not or when one can do something better than the others. The story takes a twist when the sisters realize that everyone is good at something and even if you cannot be very good at something, there is no reason not to continue doing it and having fun.

Following the story are six lessons that further cement the reality of fairness. They include:

  • Stand Up, Sit Down: This lesson teaches children that we each have different strengths. No one is good at everything, but we all are good at something.

  • Make A Fair Book For The Book Fair: This clever lesson utilizes homographs to teach children about discovering hidden talents. Each student creates a book using homographs and hides his/her special talent in one of its pages. When the class holds a book fair, every student has a chance to read every book and discover his/her classmates’ hidden talents.

  • Win Some, Lose Some Wrestlers: This lesson utilizes math probability to teach children that no one wins every time at everything. Children love this motivational lesson because they each make toy wrestlers.

  • Pretzel Nugget Division: This lesson uses pretzel nuggets as manipulatives and helps children understand the difference between the concepts of fair and equal.

  • In The Group, Out Of The Group: In this lesson, the leader assigns the children to groups, then asks the class to tell why they are grouped that way. This is a great way to involve every child in the class and shows how someone who doesn’t understand the groups’ criteria might feel “That’s Not Fair.”

  • Everyone Is Sometimes Fair-Haired At School: This lesson uses the format found in the story Fair Is Where Grandma Took Her Pickles In The Fall and applies it to the children’s school lives by having them use their own talents and show how others might feel it is unfair that they do not have the same abilities/talents.

    Also included is a Pre/Post Test for those wishing to evaluate the effectiveness of their lessons and 12 supplementary reproducible activity sheets.

    This story and series of lessons is a wonderful antidote to the expression, “That’s Not Fair!” and a fun way to teach a concept we all learn sooner or later: “Life Isn’t Always Fair.”

    TOPIC: Life skills, fairness

    INCLUDES: Reproducible story, six accompanying lessons, supplementary activities

    GRADE LEVELS: 2-5/AGES: 7-10

    FOR USE WITH: Individuals, small groups, classrooms

    AUTHOR: Debra Wosnik

    RECOMMENDED FOR: Elementary counselors, elementary teachers, youth group leaders

    8.5 x 11, 88 pages, paperback, black & white illustrations, 2006



    Standard A: Students will acquire the attitudes, knowledge and skills that contribute to effective learning in school and across the life span.

  • A:A1 Improve Academic Self-concept
  • A:A1.1 Articulate feelings of competence and confidence as learners
  • A:A1.2 Display a positive interest in learning
  • A:A1.3 Take pride in work and achievement
  • A:A1.5 Identify attitudes and behaviors that lead to successful learning
  • A:A3 Achieve School Success
  • A:A3.1 Take responsibility for their actions
  • A:A3.2 Demonstrate the ability to work independently, as well as the ability to work cooperatively with other students
  • A:A3.3 Develop a broad range of interests and abilities
  • A:A3.5 Share knowledge

    Standard B: Students will complete school with the academic preparation essential to choose from a wide range of substantial post- secondary options, including college.

  • A:B1 Improve Learning
  • A:B1.1 Demonstrate the motivation to achieve individual potential
  • A:B1.4 Seek information and support from faculty, staff, family and peers
  • A:B2 Plan To Achieve Goals
  • A:B2.4 Apply knowledge of aptitudes and interests to goal setting


    Standard A: Students will acquire the knowledge, attitudes and interpersonal skills to help them understand and respect self and others.

  • PS:A1 Acquire Self-Knowledge
  • PS:A1.1 Develop positive attitudes toward self as a unique and worthy person
  • PS:A1.2 Identify values, attitudes and beliefs
  • PS:A1.5 Identify and express feelings
  • PS:A1.6 Distinguish between appropriate and inappropriate behavior
  • PS:A1.10 Identify personal strengths and assets
  • PS:A2 Acquire Interpersonal Skills
  • PS:A2.1 Recognize that everyone has rights and responsibilities
  • PS:A2.2 Respect alternative points of view
  • PS:A2.3 Recognize, accept, respect and appreciate individual differences
  • PS:A2.6 Use effective communications skills

    Standard B: Students will make decisions, set goals and take necessary action to achieve goals.

  • PS:B1 Self-Knowledge Application
  • PS:B1.7 Demonstrate a respect and appreciation for individual and cultural differences

    American School Counselor Association (2004). ASCA National Standards for Students. Alexandria, VA: Copyright 2004 by the American School Counselor Association



    Targeted Population: All children

    Program Components: Story, 7 lessons, supplementary activities

    Applicable For:
  • ARRA: Improving Student Achievement

    Peer Relationships
    ( Peer Relationships)

  • Title I, Part A: Improving Basic Programs Operated by Local Educational Agencies
    Personal and Social Growth
    (Peer Relationships)

  • Title V, Part A: Innovative Programs
    Elementary and Secondary School Counseling Programs
    (Peer Relationships)

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