Explanation of the activity:

This activity teaches the students about importance of motivation when reaching a goal.



You will need building blocks or any other stackable objects that are not interlocking.  (Any mixture of sizes will work).  You will also need masking tape.



  1. Divide the students up into groups and spread the groups out in the classroom.
  2. Give each group a set of 10 to 20 stackable objects.
  3. Tell the students to build something with their objects.  It must be free-standing.  They cannot use anything to hold the objects together.
  4. When each group has completed a structure, go around and place a piece of masking tape a few feet in front of each structure.
  5. Tell the students that their goal is to move the structure across the line of tape, but only one person can be touching it at a time. When the structure is moved across the line, it should look the same as when the students created it.
  6. The group that finishes the fastest will get a prize.


•After the students have completed the exercise, have a class discussion about the following:

            •Did anyone try moving the whole structure at once? If so, what happened?

            The students are most likely to say that the structure fell over or they weren’t able to move it with just one person holding on to it.

            •How did you succeed in moving your structure?

            The students are supposed to have figured out that they could move the structure by breaking it into smaller pieces and then rebuilding the structure on the other side of the line.


•Begin to discuss motivation with the students. Have them define motivation in their own words. Motivation is how interested and excited you are about reaching your goal.  It is also a driving force that encourages you to continue working on a goal. Explain that sometimes it is hard to stay motivated when trying to reach your goals. To stay motivated, it can sometimes help to set rewards for yourself at each step that you complete. When you have completed a step and you are able to move on to the next step, you can reward yourself with a new book, a CD, a new shirt, etc. This may help to keep you motivated to reach your goal.


•Break down the following goals as an example:

            •Eat five fruits and vegetables a day.

1.      Eat fruit with breakfast every day.

2.      Have a fruit or vegetable as a snack every day after school.

3.      Eat a salad or side vegetables with dinner.

4.      Pack fruits and veggies in your lunch bag.


•Do 50 push-ups a day

1.      Do 10 push-ups every morning for a week.

2.      Try to increase the number of push-ups by 5 per week.

3.      Do 10 push-ups after school every day for a week.

4.      Try to increase the number of push-ups you do by five a week until you have reached fifty.

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