Students discuss passion and work to clarify and connect with their individual interests.


  1. Cognitive: Students will be able to identify examples of passions.
  2. Affective: Students will feel supported by clarifying their interests and exploring personal passions.


looseleaf paper, writing utensils, a whiteboard/overhead projector, markers

Teacher Prep

Be prepared to share a personal passion.


Time Activity Notes
2 min Ask each student to give their own definition of passion

Introduce another definition of passion by saying that it can be: a strong, compelling enthusiasm or desire for something.

Then say that this activity is a quick way of introducing the idea of passion and how they can move people to take action.

Remind students this may be a new idea – encourage students to be patient and consider what they enjoy and care about.
3 min Ask students to respond to these questions on a piece of paper anonymously:

  • Who do you look up to and why? What is that person passionate about?
  • What do you get excited about? Angry about? Sad about? Overjoyed about?
  • What would your best friend identify as your passion?
Validate passions of all students.
8 min Collect papers and redistribute anonymously.

Students will then “stand” for someone else and declare “their passion”.

When a student has declared a peers’ passion, write the passion on board until all students have spoken and all “passions” have been identified

Discuss and celebrate the range and content of student passions.

Encourage students to respect others’ sharing.

Celebrate the value of different passions and introduce collaboration on common passions.

2 min Wrap up the activity by highlighting that having a specific purpose or passion can be life-affirming and motivating. Passions can change over time. Identifying them can offer you direction. Optional discussion: How can having a purpose affect your daily choices?

Teacher Reflection

How did you feel after the activity? Did students participate and seem engaged?

Remember to ask the students to share their feedback on the activity: What went well? What suggestions do they have for making the activity better? Think about what you might do differently next time.

Emotional Intelligence Tips

  • Caution: Not all students can readily identify a passion.
  • Focus on interests and strengths (social, emotional, physical, inter/intrapersonal skills).
  • Encourage students to be patient, curious, respectful, open, and reserve judgement about their preferences.