Optimistic Thinking

Classroom Guidance

Grades PreK-1st




Students will develop a positive attitude toward themselves and others.

Questions Before you Begin


  • What does it mean when you are positive?
  • Can we change the way we will feel from negative (sad or angry) to positive (feel better or happy)?

Building Background


Today we will be talking about some big words. Those words are Optimistic Thinking. What part of our body do we use when we are thinking? That’s right! Our brain. So we are using our brain for this lesson. What does the word Optimistic mean? That’s a hard one. (allow students to try to figure it out).

The word optimistic means to stay positive. That may mean not giving up when something is hard. Or trying to stay positive when we may be upset about something. The reason this lesson is important is because when you are an adult someday, you are going to do things that are difficult for you. But what I want you to remember is that if something is difficult or hard for you, you will be able to overcome that difficulty if you stay positive and keep trying.

Watch "Ormie and the Cookie Jar"


Watch The Dot



Questions after Watching


Fear of failure, Risk Taking

  • Why doesn’t Vashti draw anything? 
  • Have you ever waited to start something, like an assignment, because you weren’t sure how good you could do on it? What happened? 
  • When does Vashti take her first risk? 
  • Who else took a risk during the video? 


Self-confidence, Risk Taking 

  • Vashti thinks she can’t draw. Is there anything you feel like you can’t do well? 
  • How do you feel about not being able to do something well? 



  • Why did the teacher ask Vashti to sign her name on the dot and then frame it? 
  • How do you think Vashti felt to see her paper hanging in the frame? 
  • How do you feel about signing your name on something you’re not proud of? 


Support System 

  • Who has seen something in you that you didn’t know was there? 
  • How do people in the video encourage others to take a risk and try something new? Self-Awareness 
  • What did Vashti discover about herself during this movie? 
  • Why do you think I chose to show this movie in our first session?



Make Your Mark


Materials needed: Large white dot for each student (Small paper plates), crayons, poster board



September 15th is International Dot Day. This day is meant to encourage everyone to “Make your mark; see where it takes you.” Hand out a white dot to each participant. Have the students design their dots and then place them on the group’s bright poster board to hang in their classroom.