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Trust, Respect, and Boundaries

Materials and Preparation

Curriculum Provided Materials:

  • For Teacher Use:
    • One copy of “Student Friendly Objectives”
    • One set of “Trust, Respect, and Boundaries” basket labels
  • For Student Use:
    • One set of “Trust, Respect, and Boundaries” example cards
    • One “Trust, Respect, and Boundaries” worksheet
    • One Exit Ticket

Teacher Materials:

  • Whiteboard or blackboard
  • Markers or chalk
  • Tape
  • Two baskets or other large containers

Preparation Notes:

  • Print and display “Student Friendly Objectives”
  • Print, cut, and laminate one set of “Truth, Respect,and Boundaries” basket labels and example cards
  • Print one “Trust, Respect, and Boundaries” worksheet for each student
  • Print one Exit Ticket for each student

Supplemental Materials:

  • “Building Trust” scenarios
  • Trust, Respect, and Boundaries PowerPoint (either printed or on computer)
  • Trust, Respect, and Boundaries PowerPoint presenter notes

Lesson Information

Lesson What is Whole Selves? Series Setting the Tone
Lesson Number and Type 2 – Visual/ Auditory/ Kinesthetic Approximate Length 45 Minutes


Standard(s) MEH1.5.12 Explain the importance of respecting the personal space and boundaries of others. (HBO 2, 3, 8)
Objective(s) Students will be able to define “trust” and identify examples of trust and no trust.

Students will be able to define “respect” and identify examples of respect and no respect.

Students will be able to define boundaries.

Student Friendly Objective(s) I can define and give examples of trust.

I can define and give examples of respect.

I know what boundaries are.

Transition Goals  N/A
Evidence/Assessments Trust, Respect, and Boundaries sorting activity

Trust, Respect, and Boundaries worksheet

Exit Ticket

Lesson Vocabulary Word(s) Trust: when you can count on someone

Respect: treating others with kindness

Boundaries: rules that tell us how to treat others

Teacher Notes

Review (5 minutes) Gesturing to the board or card reading “Whole Selves”, ask students if they remember what this class is all about. Remind them that they are learning how to become a healthy and safe adult. Ask students if they remember why they want to become healthy and safe adults. Discuss, again, reasons such as getting a job, going to college, going on a date etc. (see Lesson 1).
Introduction  (10 minutes)

Begin by explaining that today’s class is about three very important words that will help each student become a healthy and safe adult. In fact, these are three of the most important words that they will learn and need to understand in Whole Selves: trust, respect, and boundaries.Write these words on the board and have students practice pronouncing, signing, or communicating each word. Spend a few minutes on this.

Define trust with your students; say, “Trust is when you can count on someone.” Ask your students if they can think of anyone that they can count on. Have them raise their hands and share people who they trust. Don’t spend too much time here, as it is only an introduction.

Define respect with your students. Say, “Respect is treating others with kindness.” Ask students how they show respect in the classroom. Point out examples like sharing, saying “please” and “thank you”, listening when others are talking, and holding the door for others. Again, not too much time on this!

Define boundaries with your students; say, “Boundaries are rules between people.” Have students repeat back this phrase. Next, ask a teacher to come up and demonstrate “boundaries”. Explain that you will get too close to the teacher. This breaks a boundary! When you get too close, the teacher will say, “Stop! Give me some space.” Explain that the teacher has communicated what is comfortable for him/her. He/She knows his/her boundaries! Ask students if they would like to come up and demonstrate with a teacher. Similarly, don’t spend too much time here.

Activity  (25 minutes)

1. Explain that students are now going to help you sort examples of trust, respect, and boundaries. Show them the two “baskets.” Explain that one basket is for trust, respect, and boundaries. Show the appropriate basket label and attach it to the first basket. Explain that the other basket is the opposite; it is where we put things that break trust, are disrespectful, or break boundaries.2. Explain that we will begin with “boundaries”. The teacher demonstrates by holding up one of the example cards and asking students if they think it shows “good boundaries” or “bad boundaries”. The students can vote, and the teacher will place the card in the correct basket. Now, have students come up and repeat the same process; they are handed a card and then their peers get to vote. The student then places the card in the correct basket.

3. Repeat the same process with “trust” and “respect”. As you share each example, discuss how the example relates to the definition of each concept.

4. If you want to spend more time on this, give students the opportunity to sort their own cards. Hand each student a card and have them decide on their own which basket it belongs in. Have them come up one at a time and go to the correct basket. Alternatively, students could sort at their desks or in small groups.


  • Rather than presenting both good and bad examples of trust and respect, provide only the good examples, as a way to emphasis the positive actions.
  • Have students repeatedly sort the examples until they have mastered them.
  • Have students explain why each card should be sorted where they put it.

5. Have students complete the “Trust, Respect, and Boundaries” worksheet as an assessment for understanding.


  • Read the worksheet aloud and complete together as a group.
Conclusion and Exit Ticket  (10 minutes) Congratulate students on learning the new words “trust”, “respect”, and “boundaries”. Explain that learning how to be trustworthy, respectful, and have good boundaries will help them become healthy and safe adults.Pass out the Exit Tickets for students to complete.
Suggested Supplemental Activity(ies)

Narratives: Lead a discussion where you invite students to talk about a time where they lost trust in someone, they didn’t feel respected, or where their boundaries were violated. Alternatively, students can work independently using a simple prompt such as, “a time when I felt disrespected was . . .” Explore the feelings associated with these experiences and validate whatever comes up for students. Explore how the person responded and brainstorm ways of responding more effectively in the future. Explain that Whole Selves will help students learn skills to deal with these difficult experiences.Building Trust: Trust is a hard concept. Look at each of the “Building Trust” scenarios and ask students if the situations deepen or break trust. Asking “Would you trust them more or less?” will help students with limited language.

PowerPoint: Present “Trust, Respect, and Boundaries” PowerPoint and facilitate discussion. Depending on your students, some teachers find the PowerPoint to work best when it is stretched out over several days. The first day is spent on “trust”, then “respect”, and finally “boundaries. As you present each slide, break down each concept and illustrate with a simple role-play. The specific instructions are in the “PowerPoint Presenter Notes” document.

Student Friendly Objectives


T, R, and B Basket Labels


T, R and B Example Cards


T, R, and B Worksheet

Exit Ticket

Building Trust Scenarios


T, R, and B PowerPoint


T, R, and B PowerPoint Presenter Notes