Lifestyle and moral principles lesson plan

Clothes on mannequins in a shopping mall. Lifestyle and moral principles lesson plan.
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This teacher’s copy of the Lifestyle and moral principles lesson plan is printer-friendly.


Cards with good values written on them – one per card:

  • (honesty card),
  • (kindness card),
  • (thinking of others’ card),
  • (justice card),
  • (forgive others card),
  • (self-control card),
  • and (owning up card).

Each child gets just one of these cards.


Many people may not know very much about Christianity, but there is one thing that everybody would agree on, and that is if someone calls themselves a Christian and then they behave in an aggressive manner and swear and use bad language; then the response would be: “Call yourself a Christian!”

Being a Christian means having a lifestyle that has certain standards.

Q. What do you think are Christian values?

We shall now look at some good standards now.


(Teacher’s note: Distribute to each child one card with a good value on it).

Scenario 1:

On Monday, the school had just finished and the children were walking out of their classes.
Edward saw something drop from Nicole’s jacket.
What was it? A sweet!
No one else had noticed, and that sweet would taste really nice right now.

Q. What should Edward do?


Q. So what cards should we hold up?

(honesty card) + (kindness card)

Scenario 2:

On Tuesday out on the playground Edward noticed two youngsters holding something high in the air above another smaller child.
He heard the small boy say: “Give me my bag back!”
One of the two boys said: “You little swot, you don’t need this bag”.
And the other answered: “Yeah, and your bag looks too clean, so we’ll soon change that!”
Edward really wanted to get home quickly, there were things that he wanted to do and there was no time to waste!

Q. What should Edward do?

(Find an adult)

Q. So what cards should we hold up?

(thinking of others’ card) + (justice card) + (kindness card)

Scenario 3:

On Wednesday Paul, a friend of Edward’s, said that he would come over that evening.
So Edward had his tea, and then he waited and waited, and waited.
But Paul never showed up.
The next day Edward said to Paul: “What happened to you last night? I thought you were coming round!”
Paul answered: “Oh sorry, I totally forgot about it.”
Edward felt hurt that Paul had forgotten.
He had said he was sorry, but Edward got more and more angry about it.

Q. What should Edward do?


Q. So what cards should we hold up?

(forgive others’ card) + (self-control card)

Scenario 4:

On Thursday, Edward got to the classroom early and there was no one around.
So he picked up a pen and drew a cartoon picture of the teacher on the board!
Soon the whole class was in absolute silence as the teacher walked up and down the classroom asking for the one who did it.
Edward froze in his seat. No one was saying anything.
So the teacher said that everyone would have to stay behind at break time.

Q. What should Edward do?


Q. So what card should we hold up?

(owning up card)

The good values

All these things written on the cards are good values to have in life, and most people would agree with them.
The Christian Faith has these good values and many more, in the form of commands.
They are found throughout the whole Bible, but in some places, these good values, (also known as standards) are put together.
In many countries, these commands have formed the foundation for all the Laws of that country.
In the book of Exodus, (the second book of the Bible, chapter 20), a well-known group of commands can be found, and they are called ‘The Ten Commandments’.
Although they were written for the Israelites, (when they were travelling from Egypt to their land known as ‘Israel’), these commands are for all people now and then; all people everywhere.

Here are the Ten Commandments:

(Based on the original text, but written by Peter Reason).
(Teacher’s note: The numbers relate to the 10 commandments and not to the verse numbers in Exodus).

I am the Lord your God who freed you from your slavery in Egypt.
1) You shall worship no other gods other than Me.
2) You shall not create any image to worship it, including anything in the heavens above, or on the earth, or in the sea. You must never bow down or worship these things in any way; for I, the Lord your God, am very possessive of your affections. And when I punish people for their sins, this punishment continues upon all those who hate Me, right down through the different generations, but I lavish My love upon thousands of people who love Me and who obey My commands.
3) You shall not use the name of the Lord your God as a swear word, for you will be guilty if you misuse My name.
4) Remember to keep the Sabbath day as a special day, which is set aside for you to think about the Lord your God. Six days a week are for your regular work, but the seventh day is a day of rest to the Lord your God. On that day you are to do no work, neither should anybody in your household. For in six days the Lord made the heaven, earth, and sea, and all that is in them, but He rested on the seventh day. Therefore He made the Sabbath day special.
(Teacher’s note: The Israelites kept the Saturday as their Sabbath, whereas Christians keep Sunday as their special day, because Jesus Christ rose from the dead on that day. But most Christians don’t make it a legal requirement.)
5) Give honour to your father and mother, so that you may have a long and good life in the land the Lord your God will give to you.
6) You must not murder anyone.
7) If you are married, you must not sleep with anyone else other than your partner.
8) You must not steal.
9) You must not lie.
10) You must not be envious of other people’s possessions, or their family, or of who or what they are.”

Exodus 20:2-17 Peter Reason

Q. The first 4 commands, who or what do they relate to?

They tell us how we should behave towards God.

Q. The last 6 commands, who or what do they relate to?

They tell us how to behave towards other people.

Q. What do you think of the 10 Commandments?

Q. Are they still relevant to us now?


Q. How do you know what is right or wrong?

1) Certain people:

They tell us what they believe is wrong and right:

  • Parents, grandparents and older family members.
  • School teachers.
  • Friends.

2) The media:

Feeds us with what they believe is wrong and right:

  • TV and radio.
  • Films at the cinema, or on video, or DVD.
  • Magazines, comics, books and newspapers.
  • The internet.

3) The Government and the Courts:

Politicians and judges make Laws according to what they believe is wrong and right.

4) World Religions:

Different faiths say what they believe is wrong and right through their books and writings.

5) The Bible:

Christians believe that the Bible contains a set of values and standards that can be trusted. Christians believe that the only sure way to know what is wrong and what is right is to consult God – the Designer and Creator of everything!

6) Our own conscience:

Our conscience tells us what is wrong and right.
It gives us a feeling of guilt if we do something wrong, and a feeling of peace
when we do the right thing.
The Bible tells us that God has given us all a level of knowing what is wrong and right:

“for down in their hearts (that is; everybody) they know right from wrong.
God’s laws are written within them;
their own conscience accuses them,
or sometimes excuses them.”

Romans 2:12 (The Living Bible)

As we get older we get more and more influenced by friends, TV, films, magazines, the internet, etc, and our conscience gets altered.

Q. How could anyone do something terrible but their conscience says it’s okay?

Their conscience gets so altered that they keep doing wrong things and they don’t feel guilty about it.

All of these 1) to 6) may agree on many areas, but there will be some standards that will vary.
So you have to make up your own mind on the areas which differ.


Q. How should people behave in order to help make sure a community is a ‘good’ one?

Q. What effect do we have on our community when we don’t follow certain standards?

Teachers note: There are two worksheets to accompany this lesson plan:
Lifestyle and moral principles worksheet 1
Lifestyle and moral principles worksheet 2

See also: Lifestyle and moral principles. RE resources