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The Boy in the Striped Pajamas Movie Lesson Plan


  • This resource is a downloadable PDF
  • Ideal for Grades 6-12
  • Perfect for Language Arts, Social Studies, Life Skills, Character Education, or Leadership classes
  • Aligned to Common Core State Standards
  • Activities designed to help students meet Social & Emotional Learning Competencies

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas Movie Lesson Plan helps teachers pose the following questions to their students: What does it take to form a friendship with someone who is different than you? How far would you go to save a friendship?

After completing The Boy in the Striped Pajamas Movie Lesson Plan, students will have a greater understanding of rising above, knowing their integrity, and living by principles.

Bruno was an 8-year-old boy whose father received a promotion in the German army.
The promotion forced his family to move from their home and Bruno was lonely in a strange new place without his friends. Bruno became curious about the farmers who lived in the nearby camp and wore striped pajamas. Eventually, Bruno found a boy from the camp his own age and the two struck up a friendship through the barbed wire fence which separated them.

As Bruno began to learn about the reality of the camp, he made a decision that betrayed his friend. Determined to make up for his mistake, he went on a secret mission to try to save his new friendship.

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas Movie Lesson Plan teaches us that the people we often read about in history books were not automatons. They were human beings who often wrestled with their own emotions and had to decide whether or not to follow their conscience. We discover the choices we make can sometimes lead to unintended consequences.

In order to complete these activities, students will need to watch the movie The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, which has a rating of PG-13 (some mature thematic material concerning the Holocaust) and a run time of 1 hour and 34 minutes.


Each of our Leadership at the Movies lesson plans includes the following activities:

✅ Reflection: allows students to journal about one of the movie’s themes prior to watching.

✅ Analysis: questions and prompts to analyze the characters, plot, and climax of the movie.

✅ Practice & Discussion: a partner/group activity that takes the principles of the movie and asks students to take action and grow in their own lives.

✅ Extension: a RAFT (Role-Audience-Format-Topic) writing prompt to help students apply their new knowledge.

✅ Lead for Impact: challenges students to pinpoint how the hero of the story exhibited The 12 Fundamentals of Impact and then synthesize how they can apply the lessons to writing their own story.


WARNING: This is a DEEP LEARNING lesson plan to help students employ a LEADERSHIP approach to SOCIAL & EMOTIONAL LEARNING.

These activities are designed to help students meet the following Social & Emotional Learning Competencies as outlined by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL):

⭐ Develop SELF-AWARENESS and SELF-MANAGEMENT skills to achieve school and life success.

⭐ Use SOCIAL-AWARENESS and interpersonal skills to establish and maintain POSITIVE RELATIONSHIPS.

⭐ Demonstrate DECISION-MAKING skills and responsible behaviors in personal, school, and community contexts.


The activities in The Boy in the Striped Pajamas Movie Lesson Plan will challenge students to move closer to mastery in the following skills: leadership, cooperation with others, creativity, critical thinking, emotional intelligence, problem solving, and judgment and decision making.

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Leadership at the Movies Bundle

With school-wide access to lesson plans and teaching resources for over 75 movies, you can help your students strive to reach their full potential!