Throughout our lives we will be faced with many challenges, perhaps none more so than we are facing at the present time. For many of us, finding the knowledge to express our emotions in a positive manner and developing the means to interact with others in an empathetic fashion may add to the challenges we face.
What we do know is that our responses can have a huge impact on not only our own lives but also on those around us. The skills we need are often called ‘emotional intelligence’ - defined by Daniel Goleman, psychologist and best selling author, as the “ability to recognise and manage our own emotions as well as the ability to identify, understand and influence the feelings of others.”
Through the Wellbeing programme in May and June, we want to offer the students of Year 7 to Year 11 the opportunity to further develop their own personal emotional literacy. Built on the Positive Emotions strand of the PERMAH model, we have created a six-week lesson programme which provides a range of opportunities to help students develop a rich emotional language and empowers them to confidently express how they are feeling at this unprecedented time. The key message students take away from each lesson is that all emotions are valid….it is what we do with that emotion which is important.
Working individually, in pairs and as a whole class, the students will work through the following series of lessons:
Lesson 1: Identifying feelings
Lesson 2: Linked feelings
Lesson 3: Mixed feelings
Lesson 4: Describing feelings
Lesson 5: Worry & anxiety
Lesson 6: Developing empathy
Each lesson finishes with an opportunity to participate in a one-minute meditation to relax and a reminder of the support available to students in school should they wish to discuss their feelings and emotions in more detail.
Year 10 and Year 8 students had the opportunity to get creative in their Period 9 lesson this week and develop a ‘Wellbeing Monopoly’ board game to focus on promoting positive wellbeing. Students were tasked with creating new Wellbeing related character pieces, rewriting the Community Chest and Chance Cards and redesigning the classic Monopoly board - how much would you pay for a house or hotel on ‘Courageous Cafe’, ‘Bravery Boulevard’ or ‘Thankful Theatre’? Although the students often took a different direction in their creations, it was wonderful to hear discussion and debate which brought the language of positive wellbeing to the fore.