Recommended age group: 11–12
Time required: one 45–60 minute session
Equipment: Golden rules activity sheets.


This lesson will show young people how important rules and codes of conduct are for sport and for life. Everyone involved in sport has the right to participate in a safe and supportive environment. Sometimes sport can create unpleasant situations, spectators can act out of hand and coaches can display a temper. During the lesson students will identify a series of appropriate behaviour principles which young players, coaches, teachers, officials and spectators can all adopt. Young people will learn how to adopt good sporting behaviours and have an enjoyable experience of sport. These can be applied and encouraged throughout other parts of their lives too. The codes of conduct can form part of a wall display around the rules and values of sport.

  1. Divide young people into small groups and ask them to talk about and feed back to the class around the following questions:
    • Think about the areas in life that have rules or codes of conduct (for example, swimming pools, golf courses, shopping centres and airports etc.). Why do you think these are in place?
    • Based on this knowledge what is a code of conduct?
    • Do you think sports have codes of conduct?
    • Why are they important for maintaining the Spirit of Sport and ensuring fair play?
    • Can you think of any examples where sportsmen and sportswomen conduct themselves in a positive manner?
    • How about a negative manner?
    • How do you think this could affect their career in sport?
  2. Give each group the heading of a different role in sport. The roles in sport are:
    • participant
    • coach
    • referee
    • leader
    • spectator.
  3. In groups, young people will write a set of golden sporting rules for their given role using the Code of Conduct template.
  4. Working individually, young people can design their code of conduct into a colourful and creative poster by hand or through the use of ICT.
  5. Once completed, each group can share and discuss their code of conduct to the whole class.
  6. Each individual can also create their very own Personal Sporting Charter with rules they want to adhere to during lessons, playground activities, after-school clubs and sporting activities in and outside of school. The charter features the following questions:
    • What is your sporting charter promise?
    • What rules will you follow?
    • How do you conduct yourself in sport, on and off the pitch?
    • What aspects of this can you take into everyday life?
  7. Individuals can share these with each other in small groups or as a whole class.


  • To extend the more able within the group, challenge them to write an open letter or present to the rest of the pupils explaining the importance of their set of rules and the values that they are based on. Once these have been done, you could select the best one and give that person a Certificate of Achievement.