CoverAcknowledgements IntroductionPERMAExperiencing GratitudeExperiencing Gratitude - Novice HighExperiencing Gratitude - Intermediate MidResilienceResilience - Novice HighResilience - Intermediate MidActive Constructive RespondingActive Constructive Responding - Novice HighActive Constructive Responding - Intermediate MidServiceService - Novice High Service - Intermediate MidGoalsGoals - Novice HighGoals - Intermediate MidExpressing GratitudeExpressing Gratitude - Novice HighExpressing Gratitude - Intermediate MidPerseverancePerseverance - Novice HighPerseverance - Intermediate MidKindnessKindness - Novice HighKindness - Intermediate MidVolunteerismVolunteerism - Novice HighVolunteerism - Intermediate MidHopeHope - Novice HighHope - Intermediate MidCharacter StrengthsOverviewOverview on Character Strengths - Novice HighOverview on Character Strengths - Intermediate MidAppreciation of Beauty and ExcellenceAppreciation of Beauty and Excellence - Novice HighAppreciation of Beauty and Excellence - Intermediate MidTeamworkTeamwork - Novice HighTeamwork - Intermediate MidLove of LearningLove of Learning - Novice HighLove of Learning - Intermediate MidKindnessKindness - Novice HighKindness - Intermediate MidHonestyHonesty - Novice HighHonesty - Intermediate MidSelf-RegulationSelf-Regulation - Novice HighSelf-Regulation - Intermediate MidCuriosityCuriosity - Novice HighCuriosity - Intermediate MidSpiritualitySpirituality - Novice HighSpirituality - Intermediate MidCreativityCreativity - Novice HighCreativity - Intermediate MidMindfulnessOverviewOverview - Intermediate LowOverview - Intermediate HighMindful PeopleMindful People - Intermediate LowMindful People - Intermediate HighResponding to DisappointmentsResponding to Disappointments - Intermediate LowResponding to Disappointments - Intermediate HighPerfectionismPerfectionism - Intermediate LowPerfectionism - Intermediate HighThe Five SensesThe Five Senses - Intermediate LowThe Five Senses - Intermediate HighConnecting to the PastConnecting to the Past - Intermediate LowConnecting to the Past - Intermediate HighSelf-CompassionSelf-Compassion - Intermediate LowSelf-Compassion - Intermediate HighPerspectivePerspective - Intermediate LowPerspective - Intermediate HighHandling Strong EmotionsHandling Strong Emotions - Intermediate LowHandling Strong Emotions - Intermediate HighMindful Academic RelationshipsMindful Academic Relationships - Intermediate LowMindful Academic Relationships - Intermediate HighMindful LearningMindful Learning - Intermediate LowMindful Learning - Intermediate HighCultural MindfulnessCultural Mindfulness - Intermediate LowCultural Mindfulness - Intermediate HighSelective AttentionSelective Attention - Intermediate LowSelective Attention - Intermediate HighAnnotated Bibliography
Positive Psychology in the Classroom

Experiencing Gratitude - Novice High

Lesson Information

Positive Psychology Learning Outcomes

Students will...

  1. recognize positive feelings through answering questions about gratitude.
  2. experience and express positive feelings through talking about gratitude.

Language Learning Outcomes

Students will...

  1. connect content to background knowledge.
  2. actively participate in conversations through proper responses.
  3. ask and answer a limited variety of questions.
  4. use specific phrases/chunks to express positive feelings through talking about gratitude.



Explain to students that you will talk about being grateful and about ways to express gratitude.

Activate Background Knowledge

Give the students a minute or so to discuss the following questions:

  • What makes you happy? Why? 
  • What does gratitude mean? (Teacher models answer first)
  • When do you experience gratitude? (Teacher models answer first)

Activity 1: Vocabulary/Speaking

Present lexical family: gratitude (n.)/thankfulness, grateful (adj.)/thankful, to be grateful (v.)/thankful, gratefully (adv.)/thankfully

  • Definitions and examples:
    • Gratitude/thankfulness = the feeling of being happy because of something
      • Ex: I feel gratitude because of/for my family.
    • (To be) Grateful/Thankful = happy because of something
      • Ex: I am grateful/thankful for my family.
    • Gratefully/Thankfully = in a grateful manner
      • Ex: Thankfully, my family is healthy.
  • Discuss: What are we grateful for? Make a list on the board together as a class:
    • family, friends, jobs, home, food, clothes, etc.
  • Discuss: What are you grateful for? Why?
    • I am grateful for my mom because she is kind and loving.
    • I am grateful for my mom because she cooks for me.

Activity 2: Speaking

Fill in the blanks while talking to a partner:

  • What are you grateful for?
  • I feel gratitude because of /for _____________.
  • I am grateful for ____________________.
  • I am grateful for _______________ because _______________.

Activity 3: Speaking

Walk around the classroom and ask three different students what they are grateful for. Write their name and answer on a piece of paper. Teacher asks students about what their partners are grateful for.

  • Ex: Andres, what is Jenny grateful for?
  • She is grateful for her family.

Activity 4: Speaking

Share with a partner three words you learned today.


Record yourself expressing gratitude for at least three things in your life.



Write a thank-you note to the annonymous donor that gave each student $200. Teacher explains what a thank-you note looks like and gives some time to the students to write their notes. Please bring those to the office before Wednesday at 3pm. They will be bound in a book, so doing this on normal paper would work great.


1-2 min: Express gratitude for something/someone in your life using the expression I feel gratitude because of/for.... Share with a partner.


1-2 min: Express gratitude for something/someone in your life using the expression I am grateful/thankful for... Share with a partner.

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