Active Listening - 3

Continued Growth

Lesson Plan

Goal: While in an educational setting (classroom, virtual learning session, etc.), the student will demonstrate active listening in 8 out 10 observable opportunities, as measured by a teacher assessment tool.

1. Follow instructions or directions given by facing the teacher.
2. Ask relevant questions related to the topic or situation.

Definitions of Key Terms: Active listening shows others you care and are paying attention to what they are saying. Active listening helps you know and understand what is being said. Active listening includes facing the speaker, not interrupting, and asking relevant questions for the topic.

Discussion Points:

  • Active listening is important when you are in class.
  • As a friend, active listening shows those you care about you want to hear what they have to say.
  • You use active listening at home when you are listening to your family share about their day.


  • What are some behaviors that indicate someone is listening actively?
  • Why is active listening important?
  • How does whole body listening help you?

Discuss with students what active listening is and why it is important. Review the discussion point questions.

Possible activities to review the discussion points or use your own:

Think. Pair. Share: The teacher will pose questions related to the discussion points. Explain to students that the purpose of the activity is to think about the question and activate prior knowledge. The teacher will model the procedure to facilitate student understanding.

  • T (Think): Teacher begins by asking a specific question using the discussion topics.
  • P (Pair): Each student should be paired with another student, small group or work with a teacher. Pairs write brief answers on sticky notes or scrap paper.
  • S (Share): Students share their thinking with their partner. Teacher then leads a whole-group conversation using students’ answers.

SEL Categories Activity:

  • Ask students to create a list of words associated with the topic (give them 2-5 minutes to complete).
  • Once time is up, ask each student to share a word or thought from their list.
  • Other students must cross that word or thought off their list.
  • Continue the process until all words or thoughts have been listed.

Directions for In-Person or Virtual Learning: You have three options for students to complete this lesson.

  • Option 1: Print the Student Activity Sheet for each student. Complete the lesson as a group and assign the activity sheet to the students.
  • Option 2: Click the Student link to access the activity sheet electronically and post to your Learning Management System (if your school has one) or send the link to the student. The student may complete the activity sheet electronically within the classroom on a shared computer or device.
  • Option 3: Click the Student link to access the activity sheet electronically and send the link to the student. The student may access the link from a home computer, chromebook, iPad or other device.

Activity 1: What is Active Listening?

Review the key points from the discussion and definition of key terms. Ask students to think about how they would describe/define active listening. Record their answers/observations on the board or chart paper.

Materials Needed:
  • Chart paper or interactive board
  • Student Activity Sheet A - 1 per group
  • Pencil for each group

Allow students time to complete Student Activity Sheet A. Discuss their answers when all students have finished. Compare their answers with the ideas/items recorded on the board or chart paper at the start of the activity.

Student Activity Sheet A

Directions: In the space below, write as many behaviors as you can think of that demonstrate active listening. (Ex. making eye contact)

Activity 2: Why Active Listening?

Review the key points from Activity 1 with the students. Discuss with students why active listening is important.

Materials Needed:
  • Chart paper or interactive board

Ask students to recall a situation when they demonstrated active listening and the result or outcome. Was it positive? Was it negative? Ask students to think of a time when the person they were talking with did not demonstrate active listening. Describe the outcome. Was it negative or positive?

Ask students to share their reason why active listening is important. Record their answers and ideas on the board or chart paper. Discuss specific situations when active listening is important (such as getting directions to complete a homework assignment, giving directions to your house, etc.).

Activity 3: Personal Narrative

Review the key points from Activities 1 and 2 with the students.

Materials Needed:
  • Student Activity Sheet B - 1 per person
  • Pencil for each student

Share a personal experience of when you struggled to demonstrate active listening. Be sure to include how others felt and the outcome (negative or positive).

Allow students time to complete Student Activity Sheet B. Ask for volunteers to share their answers when all students have finished.

Student Activity Sheet B

Directions: Share about a time you struggled to show active listening. What did you do to help you regain focus? What was the end result or outcome?

Application Activity

Script Prompt: Develop a script and create an animation that includes two characters in a setting related to the problem. Use the script prompt provided below or create your own and include:

Materials Needed:

The dialogue between the characters must include:

  • Identify the skills needed for active listening, practice using active listening, and include the outcome (negative for not demonstrating active listening; positive for demonstrating active listening).

Script Extensions: Click the following hyperlinks to have students choose their Characters, Background and Props prior to writing scripts. For examples of script writing accommodations, click Here.

Methods for completing this activity include (choose one or a few, depending on your students’ levels and abilities):

Script Writing Practice: Teacher-led discussion of script creation. As a group, write both an appropriate and inappropriate version of the script. In small groups or individually, have the students independently create scripts that demonstrate the script prompt. Use the script sheet to create students' scripts.

Independent Script Recording: Pair students together to complete two scripts using the same script prompt detailed above. Direct each student to take turns being character one and character two.

Animation Creation: Have students record their scripts using the SiLAS software. Remind students to name and save their work. Premiere the movies with the group members at the end of each session.

Lesson Extension: Incorporate ELA standards by discussing both spoken and written grammar rules (dialogue punctuation, correct verb tense, sentence structure, character, setting, problem, solution). Consider using both the final animation and written script as an ELA grade/assignment.

Topic Checkout

Review the key points from the previous activities with the students.

Allow students time to complete the Student Topic Checkout. Discuss their answers when all students have finished.

Materials Needed:
  • Student Topic Checkout - 1 per student
  • A pencil for each student

Student Topic Checkout

Directions: Answer the question below.

1. Why is active listening important?

2. Describe strategies you can use to demonstrate active listening.