Goal: To improve social-relationship skills
Objective(s): The student will be able to give an apology in a sincere manner.
1. Decide if it would be best for you to apologize for something you did.
2. Think of the different ways you could apologize.
3. Choose the best time and place to apologize.
4. Make your apology and be sincere. (Goldstein and et al, 1980 p. 98)
Definition: An apology means telling another through words or actions that we regret what we have said or done. An apology implies that it won't happen again.
Rationale: We sometimes do things for which we are later sorry. Apologizing lets others know we are sorry and may make us feel better. Emphasize sincerity.
• The appropriate response to an apology is "Thank you."
• Discuss timing - it should be done soon after the problem occurs, perhaps privately, and at a time that will not be disruptive. (McGinnis and Goldstein, 1980 p. 134)
• Discuss that an apology might include an offer to make up for what has happened. (Goldstein and et al, 1980 p. 98)
• Stress use of appropriate body language to communicate sincerity of effort.
• Discuss ways of apologizing, (i.e. verbal or in writing). Elicit from students examples of times they could have apologized for something or did apologize for something.
• Have students break into small groups and brainstorm various ways to apologize, including how apologies might be different to authority figures than to friends.
• Give students a list of incidents and have them write ways restitution could be made.
Model/Role play with Feedback
• Have students watch videotape of role play performances and offer feedback.
• Have students select one incident and write a script demonstrating use of skill steps. Students can then use same in presentation to class.
• Some students may require simplification of steps and direct instruction on verbal steps such as, "I'm sorry for (reason) , (person's name) ."
Role play situations:
• Apologize for the following incidents:
- You break a neighbor's window.
- You called a younger sibling names.
- You told something a friend told you as a secret. (Goldstein and et al, 1980 p. 98)
- You are late to class.
- You said something cruel when you were angry.
- You changed plans with a friend because you have to babysit for a younger sibling.
- You ruined your sister's sweater.
- You ran over a neighbor's tomato plants while riding your bike.
- You bumped into someone in the cafeteria and caused them to drop their tray.
- You don't have your homework ready to turn in.
- You borrow a pen from a classmate, then lose it.
- You spill paint on the floor.
- You laugh at someone who gets in trouble with the teacher.
- You won't let a classmate join a game at recess.
- You come home after curfew.
- Your boss tells you you've made errors in giving change.
- You lose your name tag for your job.
Application with Feedback
• Older students can self-record use of skill on chart both at home and in school setting asking person they apologized to initial same.
• Teacher should monitor use of skill in class on checklists, providing verbal and/or tangible reinforcers.
• Principal and regular classroom teachers can be provided checklists to complete with teacher offering incentive to student such as lessening of homework, extra free time, etc. when set number of reports are received.