HOW TO COPE
Sometimes we feel good, and sometimes we feel bad. Both kinds of feelings are normal. Of course, we all enjoy good feelings. But when we don't like the way we are feeling, sometimes we don't know what to do about it. Here is a plan that will help you help yourself when your feelings are bothering you.
If your school or organization does not have these videos, you can purchase them from Live Wire Media, or request them from your local library.
If you are using the DVD, ask the first three questions before viewing.
1. What kinds of things are scary to kids? (Make a chart and put it on the wall.)
2. Is it okay to feel afraid when something scares you? Is it ever not okay?
3. How do people act when they don't want to admit they are afraid?
Questions to ask after showing the DVD.
4. How did Tuggy "cover-up" his feelings in the first act?
5. How did covering up his feelings affect his friendship with Moose?
6. How did Moose feel when Tuggy finally admitted he was afraid?
7. Did the kids in the discussion part of the program say anything that you strongly agree or disagree with?
8. What did you learn from this video?
9. What are the kinds of emotions or feelings that we might have on a typical day? Which are the hardest to show? Why?
10. What do you do when you are feeling afraid? Who can you talk to?
11. Does being a boy or a girl affect the way you show your feelings? If so, can you give an example?
12. Can you think of any ways in which it might be harmful to keep your feelings hidden? What could happen?
1. The purpose of this activity is to help kids understand that there are things they can do to change the way they are feeling. Have the group brainstorm ways of making each of the changes listed below. Put all the ideas on the board, and then have each child write down the ones that would work best for him or her, personally. As a warm up, have the group think of synonyms for each of the feelings in this list.
2. Have the group make a list of "helpers" who are available to kids who might be afraid or worried. Ask the kids to describe instances when they've used these helpers.
3. Design a "Dealing with Feelings" poster that illustrates the four-step method at the top of this column. Keep it displayed on a wall.
Other teaching guides in this series:
1. Describe in as much detail as you can what it is like to cry. What it is like to laugh.
2. Write a letter to an imaginary friend telling about a time you really felt good about something. Describe the feeling as fully as possible. Do the same for a time you really felt bad about something.
3. Describe a time you had a hard time coping with the way you felt about something. What made it hard? What did you do about it? Is there something you could have done that would have made it easier?
4. Select one of the feelings from item #1 in the "Group Activities" block, above (or any other feeling that comes to mind), and think of an animal that reminds you of that feeling. What is it about that animal that reminds you of that feeling? Write a poem about that animal.
5. Make a list of things you do that make you feel happy or good about yourself. Make a list of things other people (friends, family, teachers) do that make you feel happy or good about yourself.
6. Describe what a person looks and acts like when he or she is feeling:
7. Make a list of people you trust enough to discuss your feelings with.
To enlist the involvement of parents, make copies of the "For Parents" block (see below) and send them home with the children. Tell the children to discuss the video with their parents, and to perform the following activities.
2. Ask an adult in your family what things scare him or her. These can be added to a "Things That Scare Adults" chart in class.
3. Ask your family members what they do to relax when they are feeling angry. Ask them what they do to help themselves when they are angry. Ask them to help you think of things you can do to relax and help yourself when you are angry.
(Copy this block and send it home to the parents.)
Your child is involved in learning-activities designed to develop good character and empower young people to make good choices for themselves. He or she may be asked to complete several tasks at home. Your cooperation with these activities will support our overall program.
The current lesson is about fears and other kinds of feelings. We have shown a video entitled, "Dealing With Feelings," which presents a skit and discussion about how denying our feelings can cause problems for us, and how recognizing those feelings and expressing them honestly and positively is often best.
Here are some things you can do to support the idea that fears and other feelings are normal and that appropriate sharing of our feelings is healthy.
Ask your child to tell you about the video program and what he or she learned from it.
When your child behaves emotionally, don't overreact. Your calmness is the best model. When your child calms down, talk about the feelings and discuss ways of dealing with them.
Affirm to your child that strong feelings are normal. That we all have them and must learn to deal with them. It is part of growing up.
Encourage new or unfamiliar activities. Confidence is a product of successful experiences. Applaud the little victories.
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