Temperance is the habit of moderating our impulses and emotions so we can make wise choices, behave in ways that benefit ourselves and others, and set ourselves up to achieve meaningful life goals. Temperance is one of the strongest ways to stand against negative peer pressure, but it can be especially challenging for teens to master because of the way adolescent brains develop. This lesson helps cadets understand what temperance looks like and gives them tools for making temperance a lifelong habit.

Videos for Tonight’s Meeting

VIDEO 1: Phineas Gage

VIDEO 2: Safety

Cadet Small Group Questions

  • We all have conflicts within ourselves. Often, our impulses and emotions make us want to do things that we know we shouldn’t do! Let’s start our discussion by considering how strong emotions can affect us. What changes do you notice in your body and in your thinking when you are afraid, excited, or happy?
  • How does your behavior change when your impulses and emotions are especially strong?
    – Who do you think is most aware of changes in your personality, you yourself or others around you? Why?
    – How are your emotions and impulses affected by the people around you?
  • Once we become aware of our emotions and impulses, we can take steps to moderate them. This moderation of our emotions isn’t about suppressing our emotions but using them in the pursuit of excellence. What negative consequences could follow from suppressing our emotions?

Cadet Small Group Activity

Setup of the Exercise:

Each participant should have a pencil/pen and the Temperance handout found here: https://capchaplain.com/downloads/Temperance-Student-Handout.pdf.


Fill out the handout.


In order to receive credit for tonight’s lesson, send an email to cp@dentoncap.org with the following:

  1. In your own words, define temperance.
  2. Give an example of how temperance helped you make a wise decision.