Saying "No" - 1


Lesson Plan

Goal: When presented with a social situation where saying no would be acceptable, the student will use acceptable language/statement to respond in 8 out of 10 observable opportunities, as measured by a teacher assessment tool.

1. Identify if a social situation is one in which saying “no” would be acceptable.
2. Use acceptable language or statements to say no (such as “that sounds like a good idea, but I do not want to join you”, “I am sorry but I cannot.”).
3. Create a list of situations that a person has the right to say no.

Definitions of Key Terms: It is okay to say "no" to friends. If you do not want to do what they are doing, you should say "no" nicely and using kind language. When you can, you should also tell the person why you are answering no.

Discussion Points

  • Is it okay to say “no” to a friend?
  • Is it okay to say “no” to a classmate?
  • How do you say “no” politely?
  • How do you say “no” without hurting someone’s feelings?
  • What can happen if you say no to an invitation?

Discuss the meaning of saying no. Review the discussion points with the students. Teachers may want to share their own examples of when he/she said no to a friend or peer.

Possible activities to review the discussion point:

  • The group should form a circle. Ask a question and allow students to toss a bean bag to those who would like to answer the question.
  • Play tic-tac-toe by dividing the group into teams. Write discussion questions on a post-it note and place them on the tic-tac-toe grid. Allow a representative from the team to select a post-it note and as a team develop an answer to the question. If they get it right they may put their team's marker (x or o) on the grid.

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: Circumstances

As a whole group, discuss the social situations that students may encounter when they may want to say no, or have said no in a past situation/scenario. Make a list of situations or scenarios when it is important to say “no” to peers and friends. Also include those situations/scenarios when it may not be as important to say no. You may want to divide the chalkboard/chart paper in half to record student responses. Example: When a friend asks you to steal gum from a store.

Discuss how we feel when we have to say “no” to peers and friends.

Materials Needed:
  • Chart paper or interactive board

Activity 2: Role Play

Review the discussion points and ideas from Activity 1. Prepare your own list of situations/scenarios (or use the examples below or use the ones generated in Activity 1 discussions). Read a scenario/situation to the class. Discuss how to respectfully say “no” in the situation. Complete a few together as a group.

Materials Needed:
  • Scenarios on a list or chart

After completing a few as a class, divide the students into groups or partner them. Assign each group or pair a few scenarios/situations to try. Bring the class together to discuss the responses used to say no. You may also add to the list generated from Activity 1.

  • Your friend wants you to do something that you know is wrong.
  • Your friend wants to come over when your parents aren’t home.
  • Your friend wants to borrow money from you.
  • At recess the kids are making fun of a new student. They want you to come join them.
  • Your neighbor asks you to do something that is harmful.

Activity 3: Saying "No"

Review the discussions from Activities 1 and 2. Ask students to think of a time/situation that they said no to a friend, classmate or peer. Ask them to think about what words they used to say no. Review the directions for Student Activity Sheet A and allow them time to complete. When students have finished, discuss their answers and review the phrases or language they can use when in a similar situation like that again in the future.

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

Student Activity Sheet A

Directions: Select a situation below when you might need to say “No”. Check or circle your choice.

Draw or write how you would say “no” in the situation.

Lesson Extension: Listening Comprehension

Explain that a script is a form of dialogue writing between characters in a movie, play, or broadcast. Utilizing the immersive reader students should listen carefully as the teacher plays the example scripts below. Replay the script if needed. Allow students time to answer the questions on Student Activity Sheet B.

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

After students have finished, allow those students that want to share their comic to do so or role play one of the example scripts.

Example script of saying “no” appropriately:
Ken: Do you want to draw on the walls in Tori's basement?
Silas: No, I don't think that is a good idea.
Ken: Maybe we should just draw on paper.
Silas: That is a better idea.

Read Aloud Recommendations: Completing a read aloud with students is a great way for them to see and learn social skills as well as incorporating reading skills. Below are some books that could be used to reinforce the concept. Read and discuss as appropriate for level and as time allows throughout the lesson.

Utilize current classroom literature that demonstrates saying “no”.

Student Activity Sheet B

Directions: Draw a comic to match the script you listened to.

Application Activity

Review the discussions and ideas from Activities 1, 2 and 3 with the class. Divide the class into small groups or pairs.

Materials Needed:
  • Script Sheet- 1 per group
  • Pencil for each student

In small groups or pairs, have the students create scripts demonstrating how to say no using kind words/acceptable language and how to say no using unkind words/unacceptable language. Use the script sheet to create students' scripts.

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

Ideas for modifying this activity based on your students’ needs:

  • create a script as a class
  • pair or group students so that skill levels are varied and assign each a role or task that uses their skill
  • create the script by recording the dialog with a phone or other recording device.

Example script of saying “no” appropriately:
Ken: Do you want to draw on the walls in Tori's basement?
Silas: No, I don't think that is a good idea.
Ken: Maybe we should just draw on paper.
Silas: That is a better idea.

Example script of saying “no” inappropriately:
Ken: Hey, let’s play a board game.
Silas: Nah.
Ken: What?
Silas: I’m not playing. Don’t ask again.

Topic Checkout

Lead the class in a review of the discussions conducted already. Allow students time to complete the Student Topic Checkout. Discuss answers as a group when finished.

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

Student Topic Checkout

Directions: Draw or write a situation you may face when you need to say "no".

Directions: Check or Circle true or false.

1. It is not ok to tell a friend “no”.

2. It is ok to say “no” to harmful situations.

3. When possible, you should say “no” respectfully (using kind words).