Today’s post is a part of my linky party called Make A Difference Monthly. Each month I write about a specific character trait to share ideas on how parents, teachers and other caregivers can teach traits to children. I began this linky party back in April. Check out the last few months of traits and ideas to go along with them.

If you are a blogger and would like to link up, just grab my button and fill in your information for your blog post in the Mister Linky tool below. This page will serve as a resource for people to refer to when they are looking for ideas to teach trustworthiness! This is a great month to discuss Trust. As children enter a new classroom, we, as teachers, want to gain their trust and teach them to trust their classmates so that we can work together in a cooperative environment! I would love to hear your lessons and ideas!!!


The definition of trustworthy is: deserving of trust or confidence; dependable; reliable.

Since a large part of my mission as a writer is to empower children to stand up for themselves and others when bullying occurs, today I want to share a lesson on teaching children the difference between reporting and tattling. We are hearing more and more of these tragic stories, children as young as eleven years old committing suicide and both schools and families saying they were not aware of what was going on. Why aren’t these children speaking up? Why didn’t they turn to a trusting adult for help? Were they afraid of being bullied for tattling?

Children as young as three, start learning that there are adults in their lives that they can trust. At the same time, they may go to these adults on a too regular basis tattling about things that are not significant. As the adult these children trust, you don’t want to “shoo” them away. This could lead them to not go to an adult when they REALLY do need help. This is where the importance of understanding the difference between reporting and tattling comes in. We want to provide children with the skills to know how to deal with problems on their own and when to get help.


  • Give children a piece of paper and ask them to draw a picture of an adult they trust.
  • Ask: What does it mean to trust an adult? Discuss this answer.
  • Show this video from Sesame Street called The Good Birds’ Club.
  • Ask: Why was it important that Big Bird went to ____ for help?
  • Afterwards, make a T-chart like the one below, defining the difference between reporting and tattling.
  • Remind children that the adult they drew was someone they could go to when they needed help or even if a friend was in need of help!

Tell children that if they can’t determine whether or not their problem is considered reporting or tattling, have them go to an adult they trust and preface it with “I’m not sure if this is reporting or tattling but I need some help.”

Link to anchor chart.

To follow up with this lesson, read the classic, The Boy Who Cried Wolf and have a discussion about the importance of telling the truth without embellishment.

I would also like to add that my friend Barbara over at The Corner on Character, has shared two really great lessons on teaching trust. Check them out!

1. How to build a wall of trust.

2. ‘Water’ you covering up?