Problem Solving

Taking responsibility for our own actions and problems in life is a skill we need to build. There will always be challenges our lives, so we must take ownership over what we can control to and use problem-solving skills to keep moving forward.

problem-solving skills
Grade Level: 6-12


Character Skills
  • Responsibility
SEL Skills
  • Self-Awareness
  • Responsible Decision-Making
Academic Skills
  • Effective Problem-Solving


  • Do what you are supposed to do. Try your best.
  • Persevere. Keep on trying.
  • Be self-disciplined.
  • Think before you act. Consider the consequences.
  • Be accountable for your words, actions, and attitudes.

Identify and understand emotions, values, attitudes, motivations, mindsets, and personal attributes.

Responsible Decision-Making

Make decisions based on rationality, ethics, and effectiveness.

Effective Problem-Solving

Make rational, ethical, and effective decisions to find the best solutions to problems.

Share This Activity
  • Have students independently reflect on the prompts below.
    • What is a problem you are facing?
    • What is making that problem difficult to get through?
  • Watch the video Stuck on an Escalator as a class.
  • Divide students into groups to discuss the following questions. Ask groups to share out their answers after groups have had time to process the video.
    • What is the problem for these people in the video?
    • What is the solution?
    • Whose responsibility is it to solve their problem?
    • What keeps us from taking responsibility when we have a problem?
  • Talk about the following questions as a whole group.
    • When faced with a problem, what are some ways we can take responsibility and get off the escalator?
    • What prevents you from getting off the escalator?
Student Reflection
  • Go back to the problem you reflected on earlier.
    • What are responsible solutions to your problem.
    • Who can help you solve it?
  • How does it feel when you solve a problem that has been going on for awhile?

Family Connection
  • Tech Support
    • Anydo is an app that helps organize and prioritize tasks when you are overwhelmed and stuck with too many things to do
    • Sam App is an app to help you take ownership over your own health and manage the anxiety of dealing with the stress of the day to day.
  • Pillar Time
    • Play a game of chess to determine strategic ways to stay out of checkmate.
    • Write a 100-word poem about being thankful for problems .
    • Use an object from your home and try to come up with as many ways to use it as possible.
      • For example: a spoon
        • Dig a hole (slowly)
        • A party trick for your nose
        • To carry an egg 
  • Dinner Discussion
    • Describe an experience when you had to solve a problem in your life?
    • Discuss how responsibility plays a role in finding solutions to everyday problems.
    • Share why you feel it is important to take responsibility for your own actions and problems.


Radclev, Bob. “Stuck On An Escalator – Release Your Trapped Emotions!”. Getanswers.Com, 2013,

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