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Classroom Rules

A Tale of the Lion and the Mouse: The Golden Rule

We all have a set of classroom rules that students help create and follow. Each of these rules makes the classroom run more smoothly and helps children feel safer in the classroom. One particular rule may help children better understand the concept of rules.


To help students identify the importance of "the Golden Rule" and how they follow it every day.


  • Building Blocks song: The Lion and the Mouse
  • Poster paper printout of the chorus from the song
  • Chart paper and markers or chalkboard and chalk
  • Golden Rule Game (PDF) printouts
  • Large, open space
  • Large die
  • Optional: 8 ½" x 11" construction paper
  • Optional: markers or crayons

Golden Rule Game


Print out the chorus to The Lion and the Mouse on poster paper or chart paper. Be sure that a large, open space is available to lay out the game squares and to play the game.


Play The Lion and the Mouse for the class. Use the large poster paper printout of the chorus of the song to help students sing along. Have them state the Golden Rule as talked about in the song: "Treat others as you'd have others treat you."

As a class, discuss what the Golden Rule means and the many ways students follow the rule each day. Students' examples might include saying "please" and "thank you," helping a friend tie his shoe, cleaning up the dress-up area, or taking turns. Have students discuss how each example supports the Golden Rule.

To reinforce the concept, help students place the Golden Rule Game printouts (PDF) in a line or shape with a designated START and FINISH. The students act as the game pieces as they roll the die and follow the directions on each card. As students land on the squares, have them talk about why the actions on the game board do or do not follow the Golden Rule.

Optional Procedure: Distribute construction paper and markers. Have students draw pictures to illustrate some of the examples of the Golden Rule they have discussed in class, with one example per page. Also, include some examples of actions that do not follow the Golden Rule. As a class, decide on the number of spaces students might move ahead or back for each construction paper card. Write these on the cards. Use these cards as you play the Golden Rule Game above.

Related Family Article: Rules for Outside the Home


School "Rules"! Ten Activities for Establishing Classroom Rules from Education World provides excellent lesson plan ideas for establishing classroom rules, including a Q&A system that looks at how students and teachers want to be treated.

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Updated on 3/22/2014