3 Conscience Activities for Kids

3 Conscience Activities for Elementary Social Emotional Learning SEL and Character Ed

Looking for a way to explain conscience to children? Try one of these three conscience activities that offer an interactive way to see how a conscience works like a super computer. Huh? Read on... it's a simple way to break down a big concept about conscience into simpler ideas kids can grasp.

How a conscience works

A conscience is kind of like a super computer where you input information, the computer analyzes that info, and then outputs an answer. It works like this:

  1. We think about the action we want to take.
  2. Our conscience compares what we want to do to our core values like honesty, respect, and caring. (Analyzing...)
  3. Based on the results, our conscience sends our heart and mind signals that let us know if something is right or wrong.

Here's a simple example of how we put information into our conscience and get an answer back about whether it's a good, moral choice:

  1. Input: "I want to play more on my computer but my timer is up. I could sneak and add 20 minutes to the timer."
  2. Processing: The conscience compares the input to core values-- is the action honest, respectful, responsible, caring, or fair? (Whrrrr, Beep, Beep) No-- it's not honest, responsible, or respectful.
  3. Output: Your conscience sends tightness in your heart and worries in your mind to let you know it's a wrong choice.

It's a little old-fashioned, but this comparison helps children understand how they think about whether a choice will be moral, and how their body helps them to feel the difference between right and wrong.

3 Conscience Activities

Help children understand what a conscience is with these three activities built around the idea of how a conscience is like a super computer. From a simple worksheet to an interactive 3-D model, these activities help kids make the connection about listening to their hearts and minds to make choices with good values. Choose from:

  1. a worksheet
  2. an activity in which children cut and paste to match inputs and outputs
  3. go all out and build a full-size Conscience 3000-S (using a box and some printable PDFs-- no computer programming needed.)
Conscience Lesson Plan- Need help putting it all together? Try the Conscience Lesson Plan with step-by-step instructions that can be used for a full social emotional learning or character education lesson on conscience.

Rooted in Decency Book on Common Decency and Moral Values

Conscience Activity 1: Worksheet

What is Conscience Worksheet for Elementary Social Emotional Learning SEL and Character Education

In the What is Conscience Worksheet, students check off whether an action is the right or wrong thing to do. Print the PDF or fillable fields can be completed online for remote learning.

For a complete SEL or Character Ed lesson, see the conscience lesson plan with vocabulary and teaching notes.

Conscience Worksheet

Conscience Activity 2: Interactive Worksheet

Expanding on the concepts in our worksheet, students cut and paste to create a paper-based Conscience 3000-S and then compare inputs and paste outputs.

Conscience Activity

Conscience Activity 3- Build a Conscience 3000-S

Build a Conscience 3000-S interactive activity for kids elementary school SEL/ Character Lessons

Follow easy instructions to build a full-size Conscience 3000-S. Print a PDF with all the labels as well as inputs and outputs. All you need to provide is a box, some decorations, and a sense of adventure.

Students can act out inputting actions into the Conscience 3000-S, processing (beeping noises make this even better), and deciding on whether the action is right or wrong.

Conscience Building Activity

Colleen Doyle Bryant

Colleen Doyle Bryant is the author of five books and more than 50 learning resources about making good choices for the right reasons. Her Talking with Trees series for elementary students and Truth Be Told Quotes series for teens are used in curricula around the world. Rooted in Decency, Colleen’s most recent release, written for an adult audience, explores how the decline in common decency is affecting wellbeing, and how we can build more trust and cooperation. Learn more at ColleenDoyleBryant.com