Every year I read A Bad Case of Tattle Tongue by Julia Cook to our second graders, reinforcing the difference between tattling and reporting. This year our first graders are in desperate need of this lesson but I can't bring myself to take away this second grade tradition! I know, it's silly. So after a few minutes of research, I stumbled upon the story Armadillo Tattletale by Helen Ketteman. Not only does it touch on tattling, it also includes an important lesson about being noisy too.
The first graders really enjoyed the silliness of the story, and were a little appalled at one part (with the alligator) but they enjoyed the tale and understood the message. To reinforce and evaluate if they truly understood the difference between which information they should report to an adult and which information they should keep to themselves and try to resolve independently, I had a fun activity planned. I typed up different scenarios and printed them onto post-its (you can download the template here) with a cute picture of an armadillo. Then I blindfolded each student (with my Viking hat, of course!) and spun them around before they attempted to place the scenario as a reporting situation or a tattling situation.