Text of Original Fifth Class Materials - Walk Tall

shoulderscobblerInternet και Εφαρμογές Web

2 Φεβ 2013 (πριν από 5 χρόνια και 5 μήνες)

799 εμφανίσεις

This book is one of eight constituting the Walk Tall Programme for use in
Substance Misuse Prevention Education in primary schools.

Worksheets may be copied for educational purposes free and without special
permission. Permission for additional use may be
obtained from the Department of
Education and Science, Marlborough St., Dublin 1, Ireland.

Published by An Roinn Oideachais agus Eolaíochta,

Department of Education and Science.

Designed by Metaphor, Gandon House, Lucan Village, Co. Dublin.

Printed by e p
rint Ltd., 105 Lagan Road, Dublin 11.

© Department of Education and Science 1999


Social, personal and

health education programme

for the prevention of

substance misuse

Table of contents






General introduction






The Role of the School in Prevention


Effective Teaching and Prevention


Approaches to Prevention


Teaching Methods


Effective Use of the Materials






Overview of classroom materials

ior Infants

Sixth Class)


Introduction to fifth class lessons


Overview of fifth class lessons and methods


Sample letter for parents


Unit One

Me and Others


Unit Two



Unit Three



Unit Four



Unit Five



Unit Six

Looking Back, Looking Forward




Resources List


The purpose of this set of educational resource materials, “Walk Tall,” is to
support the provision of educational programmes in primary s
chools for the
prevention of substance misuse. The materials were developed by many persons,
teachers and others, led by a project team from my Department. They result from
the pilot testing of the materials in draft form, over a three
year development
se, which commenced in 1996 in 26 schools in Dublin, Cork and Donegal. These
schools were representative of a cross section of primary schools, both urban
and rural. During the school year 1997/98 a further 126 primary schools in
priority areas in Cork and

Dublin joined this development project. Close
collaboration between parents and agencies working in the community was an
important dimension. The final package, therefore, is based on a wide experience
of use by teachers in schools.

All drug use has impli
cations for the individual and for society. Misuse of
substances can lead to ill health and unhappiness for individuals and it can be
a factor in crime and in other social problems involving families and the
community. Young people and children need help a
nd support to develop positive
attitudes and behaviour free from dependence on alcohol, tobacco and other drugs
and to assist them to live healthy and satisfying lives. It is widely recognised
that successful prevention strategies need to start at an early

Consequently, the “Walk Tall” Programme begins with children in junior classes
in primary schools. It is a developmental Programme with the educational
resource materials providing practical advice, support and models for
appropriate programmes for a
ll class levels through the primary school.

The project has been evaluated independently and the results show that it was
received favourably by over 90% of the teachers who participated in the
development. Teachers valued the approach in the project and,
in particular, the
detailed resource materials and the quality of the supportive training provided.

I wish to express thanks to all who contributed to the development of these
resource materials and also the hope that they will be of particular help to
mary schools and their teachers in developing programmes of education for
prevention of misuse of substances.

Micheál Martin, T.D.

Minister for Education and Science


The educational resource materials in this package have been developed
by the
Department of Education and Science with assistance from a number of persons and
in consultation with the Steering Committee for the project.

Special thanks are due to:


Thérèse Hegarty, Tom Larkin, Bernard McHale (three primary teacher

Anne McAteer (Health Education Officer) and the Project Team.



Tony Ó Gormáin, Assistant Chief Inspector, Department of Education and Science


Bernie Collins, Project Officer, Department of Education and Science

hn Donohue, The Hanley Centre

Joan Furlong, Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform

Noreen Kavanagh, N.C.C.A.

Sr. Kathleen Kelleher, Mater Dei Counselling Centre

Niamh Lewis, Department of Education and Science, Secretary

Marian Lyon, National Paren
ts Council (Primary)

Mary Ellen McCann, Ballymun Youth Action Project

Supt. P.J. McGowan, Garda Síochána

Owen Metcalfe, Department of Health and Children

Ruby Morrow, Psychological Service, Department of Education and Science

Rev. David Muir, Church of Ire
land Board of Education

Máire Ní Fhlaithbheartaigh, Department of Education and Science

Proinsias Ó Dughaill, Inspectorate, Department of Education and Science

Sr. Eileen Randles, C.P.M.S.A.

Sally Shields, I.N.T.O.


Ruby Morrow, Psychological S
ervice, Department of Education and Science

Project Leaders

Margaret Grogan, Psychological Service, Department of Education and Science


Proinsias Ó Dughaill, Divisional Inspector, Department of Education and Science

Bernie Collins, Project Offic
er, Department of Education and Science


Dr. Mark Morgan, St. Patrick’s College, Drumcondra, Dublin 9.

Health Promotion Unit, Department of Health and Children for providing the book

Understanding Drugs.

Management, principals, teachers, pupils

and parents who participated in the
pilot phase of the project.

Trainers who facilitated and taught on courses and who assisted in evaluating
and editing of materials:

Susan Dixon, Toni Duncan, Kathleen Henderson, Marion McHugh, Mary Murphy and
John Will

Teachers who took part in review days and gave valuable feedback and

Teachers who contributed to the organisation and provision of training courses:

Bríd Conway, Rose Cullen, Anne Dolan, Barth Harrington, Damien McCormack, Niamh
Ní Mhao

Cora O’Farrell, Carmel O’Sullivan and Norma Ryan.

Sheila O’Sullivan and Alison Callaghan, Department of Education and Science, who
provided valued secretarial assistance.

Officers in the Primary Administration Section and the In
career Development
nit of the Department of Education and Science who provided support and

The management committee, Director and staff of Dublin West Education Centre who
provided administrative support and back
up for the project.

The management committee, Dire
ctor and staff of Cork Education Centre who
organised training.

The three Health Boards in the areas of the pilot development for affording
their co
operation in terms of staff inputs to teacher training and parent
education. The assistance of the North We
stern Health Board for facilitating
Anne McAteer’s contribution to the writing process and the development of the

List of schools for pilot phase:

Some of the structured exercises are similar to those found in various
educational packs and progr

Others are new. We wish to acknowledge the influence and ideas of many authors,
trainers and teachers. References are given in the Resources List. Every effort
has been made to trace copyright of the poems in this Programme. Where this has
not been

possible we will be happy to make the usual arrangements at a future



The prevention of substance misuse is a concern of every person, and is a
particular concern of those who work regularly with children. Effective
evention strategies need to take account of the influence of family, friends
and community, of social factors, culture and media as well as of schools.
Parents and people at home have most influence on the lives of children and are,
therefore, crucial in a
ny prevention strategy. Young people, youth clubs, sport
organisations, community organisations, church bodies, health services, gardaí
(junior liaison officers and community gardaí in particular), all have important
contributions to make to prevention. Sc
hools, in conjunction with family, peers
and community, can have an important role in helping children develop personal
strengths and social skills that will help them make responsible decisions.

The age of first use of legal drugs is falling and the range

of illegal drugs
available is expanding. Surveys conducted by the E.S.R.I. and data from
treatment services and community groups have indicated an increase in contact
with, and use of, illegal drugs during the past ten years. The First Report of
the Minis
terial Task Force on Measures to Reduce the Demand for Drugs (1996)1
stated that in the longer term, the most effective response might be to put
proper preventative strategies in place, (p. 42). The Report also recommended
that particular emphasis be place
d on early childhood intervention (p. 42).

Some primary school children may know a great deal about drugs and drug
based prevention programmes provide opportunities for teachers, in
partnership with parents, to explore what children already
know, to clarify
issues and to develop the skills necessary for prevention. Primary school
children are at an age when attitudes and values are developing and forming
rapidly. Developing positive attitudes at this stage can contribute to healthier
s in the longer term. Studies have shown that few young people try
illegal drugs for the first time after the age of twenty. This has significant
implications for prevention policy. Prevention programmes are likely to be most
effective the earlier children

are exposed to them and before experimentation
takes place.

In 1995, the Department of Education initiated planning for a pilot project on
Substance Misuse Prevention in primary schools. The project was intended to
complement and provide a basis for post
primary substance misuse prevention work
which has already started in many second level schools through use of the
programme On My Own Two Feet.2 The early stages of the project involved the
design and drafting of classroom materials for all primary levels

during the
summer of 1996. The use of these materials was subsequently tested in a number
of primary schools in Dublin, Cork and Donegal during 1996/97. The materials now
presented are the result of valuable feedback from the teachers in the schools
in th
is pilot project and their fuller use during 1997/98 in primary schools in
certain priority areas where misuse of drugs causes serious problems. It is
hoped that the Walk Tall Programme will be a valuable resource for all teachers
in primary schools.


The resource materials developed and the associated in
career development for
teachers constitute an educational support programme, the main aim of which is
prevention of misuse of substances. Stated another way, the Walk Tall Programme
hopes to give child
ren the confidence, skills and knowledge to make healthy
choices. The Programme also seeks to avert, or at least delay experimentation
with substances and reduce the demand for legal and illegal drugs. It is not
aimed specifically at children who are misus
ing drugs frequently, or who are
living with addiction, although they can benefit from the Programme. The needs
of these children may be more fully addressed by support from other agencies in
consultation with parents or guardians, and school programmes ca
n complement
such interventions.


Education flourishes in an environment, more so than in a programme. Children
can learn more from what they observe in the home, in their environment, in the
school and from peers than
they do from formal classroom instruction. Self
esteem, for example, is influenced by one’s experience of relationships with
others and skills are learned as and when they are practised. When considering
prevention in the school context, a school plan whic
h takes into account the
development of the child and his/her needs and life experiences in a holistic
way, will be more effective than one
off activities. An effective school plan
will involve consideration of some or all of the following:

development o
f a school climate and culture which values and practises
respect in interpersonal relationships,

helping children to appreciate their worth and the worth of others,

helping children to take responsibility for themselves and for others,

providing out
lets for creativity and enjoyable healthy pursuits and

a structured programme of Social, Personal and Health Education which has
substance misuse prevention as an integral part,

having a safe school environment, including safety with regard

discarded items in the school yard and safe storage of items such as solvents,

support for vulnerable children,

strengthening the co
operation between parents, the school and the wider
community in dealing with substance misuse prevention.

In the
context of such a plan, the use of graded, structured materials by
teachers at all class levels will greatly enhance the possibility of achieving
the aims of Substance Misuse Prevention and those of an overall Social, Personal
and Health Education Programm


The teacher is the most important resource person in schools in implementing any
programme. If teachers are convinced of the worth of a programme and feel
confident in delivering it, it is likely to be successful. Many
factors can
impinge on the effectiveness of teachers. The notion that schools should cure
all society’s ills may be a source of frustration. In this regard, teachers need
to be realistic about the goals they set themselves. In relation to the Walk
Tall Pro
gramme, teachers should be clear that their role is to contribute to
prevention and is not primarily a treatment role. While teachers and the school
can collaborate with parents and community agencies they also need to feel that
they are supported and that

their role is understood.

The importance of an effective school plan as a means of supporting teachers has
already been mentioned. Another support for the individual teacher when
implementing a new programme will be to discuss progress with colleagues.
pport can also be found outside the school in the form of relevant training
courses, some of which may be linked to support services in the community.

Familiarity with the Walk Tall Programme will increase the teacher’s confidence.
As teachers work throug
h the lesson plans, they will find ways of relating them
directly to children’s experiences

for example, an incident in the yard may
prompt a teacher to use some of the lessons on making rules or bullying. Skills
learned through the Programme need to be
used in a variety of contexts if they
are to be developed. If used in an integrated way, the lessons can come alive
for both pupils and teachers.


Research into successful substance misuse prevention suggests that approaches
which a
llow for the development and reinforcement of personal and social skills
and the imparting of age
appropriate knowledge in a structured, developmental
programme, are more successful than one
off talks or activities. Accordingly,
the three elements of the W
alk Tall Programme are skills, attitudes and

Skills: the world we live in is constantly changing and to help children deal
with this they need core skills such as valuing themselves and others,
communication skills, co
operative skills, decisio
making and critical
awareness skills. These can be best taught and developed through active learning

Attitudes: these are very important in determining the decisions we make.
Children may come to school with preconceived ideas which will affect
how they
behave and approach new experiences

for example, if they think smoking is
‘cool’ they are unlikely to resist experimentation opportunities. In some
instances children may be getting mixed messages from adults about the
acceptability of certain d
rugs, such as alcohol, and this may need to be
explored in class. Creating an active learning environment allows for
exploration of children’s attitudes and can open up the possibility of changing
their attitudes to drugs.

Knowledge: children as well as ad
ults need accurate, age
appropriate information
about drugs if they are to be in a position to make informed choices about use
or misuse. Children often find it difficult to distinguish between myths and
facts about drugs. In the Programme, the emphasis is

on finding out what
children already know about drugs, and where and when appropriate, on providing
accurate information.


If I hear I forget,

If I see I remember,

If I do I understand.

Chinese Proverb

When children are learning in an act
ive way they are far more likely to remember
what they have been taught. The following diagram best illustrates this:

Adapted from Notebook for New Faculty,

Centre for Teaching Effectiveness, University of Texas at Austin.

The active learning approach he
lps children develop in a child
environment. For this reason it is widely recognised as most appropriate for all
forms of Social, Personal and Health Education. In the active learning
environment, learning is seen as a cyclical activity.

Once one
cycle has been completed, it can lead to further cycles of learning.
For example, in the Walk Tall Programme, children may be given the opportunity
through role play or circle work to explore (experience) feelings of sadness or
happiness. These may be shar
ed and reflected upon within the group through
exploration of the variety of reactions to the experience, leading to some
understanding of the feelings of others. Generalisations could then be made
about what makes children happy/sad and these may in turn
inform decision
about classroom or playground rules. If these were then applied and tested the
cycle of learning might be considered complete. Application of the new rules
could then form the basis of further experiences for children, leading to a n
cycle or spiral of experiential learning, as is illustrated in the above

The Walk Tall Programme gives practical suggestions and ideas for exploring and
developing skills, attitudes and knowledge in the classroom through the use of
various met
hods. The variety of methods used reflects the belief that children
have multiple intelligences. Howard Gardner (1993)3 has identified and written
about seven types of intelligences. He names them Language, Logic,
Aesthetic/Spatial, Body/Kinaesthetic, Rhyt
hmic/Music, Interpersonal and
Intrapersonal. Gardner (1993) claims that of all of these only the first two may
be valued in many educational settings at present, and these are the two
abilities measurable on, for example, intelligence tests. He makes a cas
e for
valuing all of the types of intelligences, as they are all needed in society.
The knowledge that children learn in many different ways supports the
desirability of using many methods.

The following methods are proposed in the classroom materials:


This can be triggered by a wide variety of experiences inside and outside of the
classroom. It is important that discussions be planned, have clear objectives
and be structured in accordance with the aims and objectives of a lesson.
Emphasis is p
laced on the development of good listening skills throughout the
Programme as a vital prerequisite for conducting useful discussions. Teachers
sometimes say, “we got nothing done because the discussion went on for so long.”
However, its importance should n
ot be underestimated for it is through
discussion that we deepen our own and children’s understanding, leading
eventually to better learning.

Art Work

Artistic expression can be very useful as a way of allowing children to express
ideas and feelings. Forms

of art work which are used in the lesson plans include
drawing, painting, collage and posters. It is not always assumed that children
will display their work, as in some instances privacy may be desirable. Art work
can also be particularly useful for over
coming literacy problems. Children


sometimes have inhibitions about their ability to draw. It is important
not to emphasise the drawing aspect as accuracy of the finished product is not
the primary aim of the activity. A useful strategy for
overcoming anxiety or
reticence about drawing ability might be to ask children initially to draw with
their non
dominant hand. This can illustrate that we are not expecting an
accurate reproduction in the particular circumstances.

operative Games

differ from competitive games in that all the children are involved and
there are no winners and no losers. The emphasis is on helping each other to
achieve certain objectives, which can help to foster trust and positive
relationships in the classroom. Enj
oyment and fun can be generated through the
use of co
operative games.

Circle Work

Circle work is a form of group listening where children/adults sit in a circle
to discuss issues, feelings and opinions in a structured and democratic way.
Research suggests

that it can enhance self
esteem if used regularly. A speaking
object, talking stick, or microphone greatly helps order, the idea being that
the child with the speaking object has the power to speak and all others have
the power to listen. Children always
have the right to pass on a particular
question and that decision needs to be respected.

Stories, Poems, Songs and Rhymes

There is a variety of stories, poems, songs and rhymes referred to and contained
in the materials. These can help to initiate discussi
on on children’s
experiences and may point to solutions to problems they may be having. Stories,
poems, songs and rhymes can help to reinforce learning experiences and are often
remembered for a long time.

Role Play and Mime

Role play is a simulation of r
life situations in a controlled and safe
environment. In role play, children take on roles based on real
life situations
in which personal skills can be developed and tested. In the Walk Tall Programme
there are suggestions on how role play and mime mi
ght be structured at the
different class levels.


Visualisations have been likened to journeys of the imagination. They can be
used for relaxation and calming and also for developing self
awareness and inner
strength. In the classroom materi
als there are some guided visualisations where
the teacher invites children on an imaginary journey using a prepared script.

Group Work

Group work is used extensively in the lesson plans as a way of developing and
practising skills and building a co
ive climate. Sometimes the work is
carried out in pairs or small groups, and the results are then brought back to
the class group. It is a valuable way of ensuring that everyone is active in the
learning experience.

Project Work

Project work is suggested
at all levels in the Programme, and is a particular
type of group work involving specific skills. Children will use research skills,
such as interview or survey, which can be transferred to other curricular work
undertaken in the classroom.


his activity provides children with opportunities to generate ideas quickly.
All contributions are recorded without comment. The group may then categorise
and prioritise using discussion and negotiation techniques.


Suggestions for movement activit
ies are incorporated into the materials. These
allow children to explore feelings and skills. Through movement, children can
access their inner world in a relaxing, healthy and enjoyable way.

In the lesson plans there are detailed procedures for each of th
e methods listed
above. However, as teachers become familiar with the materials they may find
additional uses for the methods, which will allow for reinforcement of the
skills involved.

Teachers who wish to get more information about any of the methods sho
consult the Resources List on pp. 135, 136.


Reference has already been made to the desirability of adopting a whole school
approach to Substance Misuse Prevention through the development of a school plan
for Social, Perso
nal and Health Education, which has Substance Misuse Prevention
as an integral part. The following illustration shows the core areas in a
Social, Personal and Health Education curriculum in order to provide a framework
for such a plan:

The flower symbol i
s useful, suggesting that at the heart of any Social,
Personal and Health Education curriculum is the nurturing of the growth and
development of children. A caring school climate and ethos will foster the right
conditions for growth, while the use of struc
tured materials will provide a
framework for such work to take place in the classroom.

Social, Personal and Health Education

Teachers are interested in how the materials in the Walk Tall Programme relate
to other programmes such as Stay Safe4 and Relation
ships and Sexuality
Education,5 and how they may be integrated to form a comprehensive Social,
Personal and Health Education curriculum. A thematic approach allows teachers to
make the best use of all the resources available. For example, the main themes
n the Walk Tall Programme are Self
esteem, Feelings, Influences, Decision
making and Drugs Awareness. Some of these themes are also found in the other
programmes, although different aspects may be highlighted, depending on the aims
of the programme. Self
steem is a core theme and all the programmes aim to
develop the child’s self
esteem. The child with good self
esteem is better able
to resist opportunities or offers to misuse drugs, make good choices about
personal safety, and sustain healthy personal rel
ationships. The theme of
feelings is also a recurring one across the programmes. As an example, a summary
of topics in relation to feelings in the different programmes is outlined in the
following grid, showing some areas of overlap and potential for integ

Work completed in one programme on feelings and other themes will underpin,
extend and complement work from another programme. However, this integration
should ensure that the specific aims of the various programmes are not lost as
all are import
ant for the child’s development. Each programme has its own
rationale and guidelines to which teachers should refer.

Teachers familiar with the Walk Tall Programme suggest that it could be used as
a basis for a Social, Personal and Health Education curricu
lum, with the other
programmes such as Stay Safe and Relationships and Sexuality providing key
lessons in their specialised areas. Various health and nutrition programmes
developed through Health Boards and the Health Promotion Unit will complete the
re. Integrating the materials of the other programmes with the Walk Tall
Programme will ensure a broad, well
developed approach to Social, Personal and
Health Education.

curricular links

It is important to note that the programme can be taught in a
way. Environmental Studies, Physical Education, Language Development, Arts and
Crafts and Music are some of the subject areas in which the Programme can be
taught. Lessons in some cases can be taught across a range of subjects. For
, a lesson could include a story which involves oral language, some
written language on a work sheet, a movement activity which could be completed
in P.E., or a collage activity which could be completed during Arts and Crafts.

Examples from the fifth clas
s programme are outlined below:

Implementation Issues

The classroom materials use a variety of active learning methods. Some of the
methods may be familiar, while others will be new. Children will require time to
build up their skills if they have not had

experience of these methods before.
It is important to take time to build up their confidence by doing lessons with
which they feel comfortable. If at first the activities don’t proceed as planned
it is important to reflect on why this may be so. Children

may need more
introductory practice to work in the different ways advocated. Discussion with
other teacher colleagues can be helpful in these circumstances. Ideally, the
programme starts in the infant classes and the children gradually build up the

needed to work through the programme. Dedicated folders for their work
allow teachers and pupils to review progress and assess learning.

It is not necessary to start with any particular section. However, Unit One is
seen as incorporating materials that wi
ll help build a supportive class climate.
The materials from the Feelings unit require that teachers are comfortable
talking about feelings and that there is a supportive atmosphere in the
classroom and will therefore be more appropriately used when some w
ork has
already been undertaken with the class. It is advisable that teachers choose
materials with which they are comfortable as their starting point.

An overview of the content of the whole Programme is included in each set of
classroom materials on pp.

23. This allows teachers to see at a glance what
precedes and follows the work at any given level. This will aid the teacher in
assessing whether the lesson plans are appropriate for a given class. For
example, if the children have no prior experience
of talking about feelings in
the classroom, it might be appropriate to use lesson plans from a lower class
level initially. At all times it is the teacher, who knows the children, who is
in the best position to decide on the appropriateness of the content
and methods

Ground Rules

Establishing ground rules for the class can create a supportive atmosphere and
help set boundaries. It is important that the children are actively involved in
deciding on ground rules. Some examples of ground rules are:

sten when someone else is talking

downs are not allowed

No one is named in a negative way

As part of developing ground rules a discussion in regard to sharing outcomes of
class work outside of the class group may be useful. This might lead to a
rule such as outside of class, share only your own contributions to class
discussion. The approach taken will depend on the age and experience of the
children. Children may need to be reminded of the ground rules from time to time
or as issues arise

The Teacher’s Role

The role of the teacher in the active learning environment is like that of a
facilitator. This may initially involve planning and setting up the structures
for an active learning approach

the ground rules are one example of this.
wever, as important as what is done is how it is done. Important
considerations are the building of trust, respect and positive regard for all,
developing and maintaining good relationships between teacher and pupils and
among the pupils themselves, and ha
ving clear goals, expectations and learning
objectives. The teacher as facilitator encourages children to share ideas and
opinions, asks questions, and, as appropriate, devolves responsibility to the
group for answers and outcomes. The value of discussion
during or after an
activity should not be underestimated as it can deepen understanding leading to
better learning for all. However, the teacher is also a leader and the entire
process is one of leading children towards valuing what is good.


is generally acknowledged that assessment in the area of Social, Personal and
Health Education is difficult. However, when assessment is viewed as a tool for
improving what is happening for children in the classroom, it is as relevant in
this area of the c
urriculum as in any other.

Assessment has two main purposes

formative or summative. Formative assessment,
such as teacher observation, is useful when trying to tailor programmes such as
Walk Tall to suit individual and group needs. Summative assessment
affords the
teacher an opportunity to reflect on the progress of the child through any given
programme, and the effectiveness of the methods and materials in meeting
children’s needs.

A manageable approach to assessment in the Walk Tall Programme is to fo
cus on
the skills, attitudes and knowledge that are contained in the materials at the
different class levels. Bearing in mind that one will monitor a range of
behaviours, achievements and developments, many of which may not have been
assessed in the school

in a formal or organised way previously, it will be
necessary to have a number of assessment approaches including the non

It is suggested that the following general approaches can assist in assessment:

Teacher Observation

ed Tasks and Tests

Projects and Folders

Feedback from Parents

Teacher observation is probably the most effective way of assessing attitudes
and skills development. Teachers are constantly observing children in and out of
the classroom. While children

are engaged in activities, teachers can informally
observe, for example, the levels of co
operation and participation and the
attitudes towards the work in hand. Teacher observation could also help to
pinpoint particular difficulties which individuals or
groups of children might
have with some methods in the classroom materials. If carried out in an
organised, reflective way observation can inform future planning for the

designed tests and tasks may be appropriate for assessing the know
and skills children have gained through the Programme. There are some examples
in the classroom materials of quizzes to assess children’s knowledge.
Occasionally, teachers may introduce specific tasks to test, for example, the
level of co
operation o
r assertiveness of children.

Project work and displays suggested in the classroom materials can help and
complement both the teacher’s observations and the tests and tasks mentioned
above. Teachers in the pilot schools have indicated that having a dedicate
folder for children’s work can be a very useful way of monitoring and assessing
what has been learned.

Arranging for feedback from parents can be very helpful to teachers and schools
in developing programmes. Such feedback will occur mainly in an inform
al way
through contact with individual parents or with parents’ groups or at parent
meetings. It will relate mainly to communication between parent and child at
home. To be really helpful it needs to be preceded by informing parents about
the school’s aims

and programmes.

Time is given at the end of each class level to allow children to evaluate the
Programme. This could be a very useful way of gathering information about its
suitability while allowing children to practise critical evaluation skills.

In co
nsidering assessment it is necessary to think in terms of short
term and long
term objectives. The achievement of short
term objectives
can be approached through monitoring classroom and school behaviour,
achievements and developments. Feedbac
k from parents can supplement this.
Achievement of medium
term objectives may be monitored when children have
progressed to senior levels of the primary school and through feedback from post
primary schools. Achievements of longer
term objectives are asses
sed through
up studies of young people generally, surveys such as those carried out
by the E.S.R.I. and general feedback from health services and other social data.
Clearly, the immediate concern of the individual primary school will be with
erm objectives, and to the extent possible, with medium
term objectives.
The achievement of longer
term objectives will be largely outside the capacity
of the individual primary school to assess, and will be considered in the
context of the wider and more
general approaches mentioned earlier.


Substance Misuse Prevention is a complex and demanding task which needs to be
approached in the context of increasing drug use among young people. No one
group holds the key to prevention, rather a co
ive approach is required.
The importance of schools in the context of an overall prevention strategy is
acknowledged in the development of school
based programmes such as Walk Tall.
The success of any programme will be influenced greatly by what is happeni
both inside and outside schools to support young people to make healthy
lifestyle choices.



First Report of the Ministerial Task Force on Measures to Reduce the
Demand for Drugs. October 1996.


On My Own Two Feet: Educational Resource Ma
terials for Substance Abuse
Prevention. Department of Education. 1994.


Gardner, H. Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences. London:
Paladin. 1993.


The Stay Safe Programme: Personal Safety Skills for Primary Schools. Child
Abuse Prevent
ion Programme. 1997.


Resource Materials for Relationships and Sexuality Education. Department
of Education and Science. 1998.

Overview of•

classroom materials

Introduction to

Fifth Class Lessons

This Programme is divided into six units, Me and Oth
ers, Feelings, Influences,
making, Alcohol and Looking Back, Looking Forward. The first four units
deal with self
esteem, feelings, influences and decision
making. These units
include some material related to substance misuse but in a less overt m
than Unit Five. This deals specifically with alcohol. The final unit is a review
of the work done throughout the Programme.

The Programme is process
centred. While information is taught, the main focus is
on developing attitudes and skills e.g. self
awareness, self
esteem, listening,
operation and empathy. The children’s experiences and opinions are valued and
respected. Right answers are not sought. Children are given the opportunity to
express their views and tell their stories.

A variety of meth
odologies is used in these lessons. These include discussion,
group work, art work, visualisation, mime and story. It is important that
teachers familiarise themselves with the structure and content of each lesson
prior to using it. A brief explanation of
the various methods is contained in
the General Introduction and titles of relevant books are provided in the
Resources List.

Circle work

In this Programme a great deal of sharing and discussion takes place. Seating
the children in a circle is best not onl
y for practical reasons such as seeing
and hearing each other, but also because the circle itself conveys the valuing
within the classroom of sharing, inclusion and equality. If a circle formation
is not possible due to space, then the teacher needs to giv
e consideration to
finding a way of working which systematically invites everyone to participate. A
speaking object is used as a way of regulating contributions to the discussion

the child holding the speaking object has the right to speak and all others

the right to listen.

Some of the lessons included in this Programme deal with sensitive issues. These
range from dealing with feelings, to looking at risky situations, and alcoholism
and the family. It is important that teachers be aware of such is
sues prior to
implementing the lessons. Where appropriate, the Teacher’s Note highlights these


It can be useful for each child to have a special folder for this work. This
could be decorated at the beginning of the year.

Note: the materials

on drugs, other than alcohol, are in the Sixth Class book
but it is intended that the school will decide when it is most appropriate to
use them.


A letter to parents informing them about the Programme and inviting their
positive participation is i
ncluded on page 27. Teachers may wish to send this to
parents prior to introducing the Programme.

Overview of

lessons and methods

Date _______________

Dear Parent/Guardian,

We are beginning a Programme of Social, Personal and Health Education with
ldren over the coming weeks. One of the main aims of the Programme is
Substance (drugs) Misuse Prevention. The main themes covered are Self
Feelings, Decision
making and Drugs. The emphasis is on giving children life
skills, along with accurate, ag
appropriate information. The main drugs dealt
with are alcohol and nicotine.

Parents and teachers cannot be with children all the time, particularly as they
grow older. Consequently, they need to be able to stand on their own two feet to
face all the cha
llenges of modern society. Hopefully, at the end of the
Programme, children will be better equipped to deal with any difficult
situations they may face in the future.

The Programme begins by building children’s self
esteem. You may be asked to
in your child’s learning as we work through the various activities
in the Programme, for example helping your child to complete a home assignment
or providing magazines for art work. You may also wish to discuss the Programme
with your child from time to t
ime. Your positive participation will help in
fostering the successful teaching of the Programme.

A copy of the materials being used is available for viewing if you wish. If you
have any questions, please feel free to discuss these with me.

Thank you for y
our co


Class Teacher

Unit ONE

Me and Others

Unit One

Me and Others

The main theme of this unit is self
identity. We all have events in our lives
that are special just to us. By focusing on these positive events our self
eem is enhanced.

The lessons in this unit focus on special talents, attributes and skills we have
as individuals. Through the activity of the Time Line in Lesson 1 we can focus
on the significant events in the child’s life. Art work in Lesson 2 allows
dren to further develop the theme of self
identity. Listening and
communication skills are practised in Lesson 3. The final lesson deals with
promoting self
acceptance and coping with disappointments.

The lessons in this unit are as follows:

Lesson 1

is my Life

Lesson 2


Lesson 3


Lesson 4

You Can’t Win all the Time

Additional Activities

Lesson 1

This is My Life


A strong sense of personal identity is important for one’s confidence and social


To help

the children form a clearer personal identity through looking at their
own life story.

To foster an atmosphere of sharing and trust within the group.

To provide a basis for looking at growth and change in children’s lives.

Teacher’s note:

Some children ma
y have personal histories that require particular sensitivity.
It is important to emphasise that children do not have to share their thoughts
or stories with others if they do not wish to do so.

This lesson is written as three sessions and can be altered a
s necessary. It can
be undertaken as a project over a month and can continue while subsequent
lessons are underway.


Sample Time Line (p. 36)

Worksheet: Me and My Story (pp. 37, 38)

General art materials including crayons, markers, newspri

A camera to take photographs, or have the children bring in photographs

PROCEDURE (Session 1):




Preparation for Session 2/introduce the worksheet: Me and My Story



The years in which the chi
ldren’s birth dates fall are written on the
blackboard. Ask the children what is significant about those years. Explain to
them that in our lives some events are very significant. Ask the children to
name events in their lives which are significant/importa
nt. What are some events
which would have been important to many of them and to their families e.g. going
to school for the first time, birthdays, moving house? Tell the children that
today they will be looking at their own lives and things that have been
important (significant) to them and that they are going to make Time Lines to
show these important happenings. It can be very useful to draw your own Time
Line of significant events and to show it to the children. The sample Time Line
may be shown. The chi
ldren could be asked to find information about significant
events in their lives at home. Explain that, if they wish, they can talk about
some of the events illustrated on their Time Lines at a later stage.


Distribute newsprint, markers and crayons
. Ask the children to draw a Time Line
of their lives so far. Tell them that they can use pictures, colours or words to
show these.

Mark when you were born on one side of the page and draw a Time Line
across the page.

Draw or write in some of the specia
l times, memories and important people
in your life so far.

Allow time for the children to complete their Time Lines and assist as


When the Time Lines are drawn the children could sit in a circle. Ask for
volunteers to talk about thei
r Time Lines. (Alternatively, the children could
form small groups to talk about this.) In the circle discuss:

What were some of the important events?

Who were the most important people?

Complete the discussion by having a round on: a happy event for me
was …

Preparation for session 2/worksheet

Tell the children that in the next session, they will do more work on their
story. They will keep this work for themselves, as a record of their lives. The
children could be asked to bring in a photograph of thems
elves when they were
babies and another more recent photo. Photographs of the children may need to be
taken if all the children haven’t brought one.

Distribute the worksheet: Me and My Story. Read through the worksheet with the
children and clarify any poi
nts if necessary. (It may be completed over a period
of time, in the class, individually, in pairs or at home.) It will be needed for
the next session.

It would be appropriate for the children to bring the worksheet home to discuss
it with their families.
Perhaps their Mum or Dad could tell them about their
memories of when they were born or their first day at school.

PROCEDURE (Session 2):



Me and my story



Distribute the photographs of the children wh
ich have already been taken, or
display the ones they have brought in. Each photograph could be assigned a
number and the children could be asked to match the baby photographs with the
present day photographs, if these are available.


Ask the chi
ldren to break into small groups and discuss how they think they have
changed since they were small. Each group could be asked to come up with two
things that have changed and two things that have remained the same for them,
since they were babies. These g
roups can then report back.

Me and my story

Ask the children to complete the worksheet: Me and My Story, if this has not
already been done at home. The photographs could be attached to the worksheet.
Tell the children that these sheets will not be used in
display. The emphasis
should be on reflection rather than on recording. Time is given to discuss
aspects of Me and My Story with the other children, but they are free to select
what they wish to discuss.

Teacher’s note :

This final session draws together t
he work done in the previous two sessions. It
is an opportunity for the children to discuss and celebrate an important event
in their lives. The children should know that this work is for display.

PROCEDURE (Session 3):






Invite the children to talk about the work they completed in the last two
sessions. What did you find interesting, what was easy to write about, what was
hard to write about? The children could discuss this in small groups rather than

a class group. (The focus of this exercise is on sharing and enjoyment.)


Tell the children that today they are going to draw, paint, or write about one
of the important events or days in their lives so far. Ask the children to pick
one eve
nt which they think was important to them. If they have difficulty with
this, ask them to choose a day that they really enjoyed. Tell the children that
this work will be displayed around the classroom.

Distribute the art materials as necessary, and ask the

children to paint, draw
or write about the event/day, that they have chosen. This can be done in small
groups and the children can discuss these events with their group.

Bring all the children together to talk about their pictures/stories. They
may/may n
ot wish to talk about the important events that they have drawn or
written about and should be free to make that choice.

Display work

Allow the children an opportunity to display their drawings/stories.

Sample time line

Me and my story

My name is

This i
s my picture.

It was taken

I was born on

I was born in

I live with

When I was a baby I

On my first day at school I

The people who take care of me are

The people who are very important to me are

The groups I belong to

In school, I am good at

Outside of school, I am good at

I want to be

I like

I don’t like

I am happy when

I feel sad when

The day I most remember is

I feel really good when

The best thing about me is

Lesson 2



g able to accept oneself is important in building self


To help children develop an understanding of themselves.

To help children recognise their own unique qualities.


Variety of magazines, paste, scissors, paper, crayons





Detailed procedure:


Tell the children that they are going to make collages of themselves and that to
do this they have to select pictures from the magazines which they think show:

What they like doin

What they’re good at

Their likes and dislikes

Their hopes/wishes


Distribute sheets of paper, scissors, paste, crayons and magazines. Ask the
children to look through the magazines and cut out pictures that show something
about them (refer to a
spects already mentioned). The children then paste these
onto a page. They can use words or drawings to complete the collage. Ask them to
leave space to write a motto on their collage. Give some examples of mottos and
allow them to compose their own motto.


Bring the children together (or ask them to form small groups) and invite them
to talk about their collages. Emphasise how important it is to know and to
appreciate oneself.

Lesson 3



Sharing in a small group, being lis
tened to and accepted helps foster identity
and self


To develop a sense of identity.

To develop listening skills.

To develop skills in oral communication.

To develop trust within the group.

Teacher’s note:

It is important to discuss the di
fficulties of listening and remembering during
the introduction. It helps the children to focus their attention on the
listening process. Some groups may find it necessary to record brief notes
during the interview. While it may be easy for best friends to

pair off during
this exercise, it may be more beneficial to pair off with someone else.

This lesson could be conducted over a number of short sessions using the same
interview partnership. This allows trust and rapport to build up between the

he materials from the previous lessons may be of use.








Ask the children to reflect on the work they did in the previous lessons:

What did you like/find in

Did you find out anything new about yourself?

The children then play a game. A child says his/her name and favourite food. The
next child repeats this and adds his/her name and favourite food. The third
child repeats both names and foods and ad
ds his/her own. This continues until
all have said their name and favourite food. Discuss the game and how
easy/difficult it is to concentrate and remember.


Ask the children to brainstorm questions you would ask or things you would talk
about if
you wanted to get to know someone. These might include:

Likes and dislikes

Hobbies and interests

Important people in their lives

The type of person they are

Hopes for the future

Draw up an agreed list of questions to be used in talking with and gettin
g to
know someone.

Divide the children into pairs, avoiding having best friends together. In pairs,
the children then interview one another using the prepared list. Allow three
minutes interview time for each child. Point out to the children that it is
lly important to listen and to be able to remember what was said by the other


Ask each pair to join another pair. In these groups each child will introduce
the person that they interviewed. At the end of the introductions the child, wh
is being described, will have an opportunity to correct any errors that might
have occurred.


Questions to encourage discussion might include:

Did you enjoy listening and talking?

How do you know someone is listening?

How do you show you are


How did it feel to be listened to?

Was there a feeling of trust between you and your partner? Why? Why not?

What does this exercise teach us?

Extension Work:

As a follow
up each child could write something they learned about the child
that t
hey interviewed or draw a picture showing some of the things that they
discovered about her/him. Encourage them to focus only on positive aspects of
the other child.

Lesson 4

You Can’t Win All the Time


Coping with our limitations and disap
pointments and learning to accept them
gives us a greater understanding of ourselves.


To promote self

To consider how we cope with disappointments.

Teacher’s note:

Select the most appropriate story for the children.


Sarah’s or Gary’s or Kevin’s story (as appropriate), (pp. 46





Story endings and discussion



The children are told that today’s lesson is about something we often don’t want
to talk


when we aren’t successful at something. Ask the children to
brainstorm why being good at something is important to us. Record these ideas on
the blackboard. Brainstorm and record how we feel when we are not successful.


Distribute copies of t
he selected story and read aloud.


Discuss the story, using Points for Discussion, which are on a separate page
after each story.

Story endings and discussion

Using the ideas coming from the discussion, the children can write possible
endings for

the story. This can be done individually or in groups. (It might be
useful to ask the children to write a number of endings showing different
reactions to this event.) Have them present these to the other children.

Further discussion can take place on how

we cope with our own disappointments.
The children are invited to share their own stories.

Sarah’s story

Sarah wanted to be on the school sports team. When she was smaller she had seen
the older children practising and training to go to the Community Gam
es. Each
year the school ran trials to see who would be the fastest and only the first
two in each race were allowed to go. She thought it would be wonderful to be on
the team and run for the school. She remembered when her neighbour, Orla, had
won a medal

at the Community Games. Everybody in the school cheered her when she
had come home from the sports. The people on the road had put out a sign saying,
well done, Orla. Sarah remembered how her own mother had been talking to Orla’s
mother who said, “isn’t s
he a great girl? She really worked hard.”

Sarah longed to have her mother say that about her. She remembered seeing Orla’s
picture in the newspaper that week. So Sarah decided she had to train hard.
Whenever she was asked to go to the shop or whenever she
was going down to a
friend’s house she ran as fast as she could. She really loved running. One
Monday morning the teacher told the children that at the end of the week there
would be trials for the Community Games. The first two from each race would go
the Community Games.

Sarah was excited. She had been thinking about the trials and hoping she’d be
picked. Now, she felt nervous. After school she told her mother that the trials
were on Friday. “Well, just try your best and see how you get on,” said her

On Friday, Sarah brought her runners and shorts to school. That afternoon, the
children went out to the trials. The first race was the eighty metres race.
Sarah lined up in her heat. When the teacher blew the whistle, Sarah ran as fast
as she could.

But even as she tried hard she could see three other girls running
faster than her. She reached the finishing line in fourth place. She looked at
the two girls who came first and second and saw how happy they were to be going
to the Community Games.

h’s story

points for discussion:

Why would Sarah have liked to be on the school team?

Did Sarah feel some pressure to succeed? If so, where did this pressure
come from?

What do you think Sarah’s reaction to her disappointment will be?

Possible reactio

Get angry with her teacher or her mother

Feel jealous of the girls who won

Decide that she is never going to run again

Feel disappointed and upset

Think about what happened and realise that she wasn’t as good as the
others, but keep enjoying
running even if she doesn’t win

Who could help Sarah cope with her disappointment?

Gary’s story

Everybody on Gary’s road knew James Keane. He was a few years older than Gary
but Gary knew him in school. James Keane was really good at football. Some

from a soccer club had been to see James play and people on the road
reckoned he would play for a famous soccer club some day. Gary’s Dad said that
James would be famous some day and that people would pay money to watch him
play. Gary often heard his Dad
talk to other Dads on the road about James and
how good he was.

Gary would have loved to have heard his Dad say that about him. He would have
loved to hear people on the road talk about him.

Gary reckoned that he could play football too. He played a bit on

the road and
he was alright. He decided to practise a lot more. Every evening he would
practise keeping the ball off the ground. He tried to use his left foot, which
was his weak foot, to shoot and pass the ball. He watched soccer on television
and looked

at what the players were doing. He tried to copy their skills.

One evening Gary was on the road. There was a game on and he got picked to play.
James Keane was on the other team. Gary tried his best to tackle him and to
score against him but James was too

good. Every time Gary had the ball James
just took it off him. Gary eventually stopped trying. James’ team won the game
easily. Gary felt very disappointed. He knew that he could never be as good as
James Keane. He was angry with himself and with his Dad.

Gary’s story

points for discussion:

Why would Gary like to have been as good as James Keane?

Did Gary feel pressure to succeed? If so, where did this pressure come

What do you think Gary’s reaction to this disappointment will be?

Possible reac

Get angry with his Dad

Feel angry with James Keane. Feel jealous of him

Decide he is never going to play football again

Feel disappointed and upset

Realise that he wasn’t as good as James, but that he can still enjoy
playing football

could help Gary cope with his disappointment?

Kevin’s story

Kevin loved to paint. Ever since he was small, he always had paint brushes and
paper and he used to paint at home and in school. He watched programmes on T.V.
and learned different ways of pai
nting. His mother liked to see him enjoying his
painting. She often hung his pictures around the house at home and she was very
proud of Kevin’s work. One day at school the teacher put up a poster to say that
there was an art competition for their area and

each child could enter a
painting for this competition. After school, Kevin asked his teacher if he could
do a painting for this competition at home, as he had his own paints. The
teacher said that would be fine.

That evening after school Kevin stayed in
his room for ages. His mother came up
to check to see if he was okay. Kevin said that he was fine and that he was
doing a special painting. Kevin’s painting was of the beach, where he had gone
one day during the summer. He worked slowly and carefully on it
. The following
day he brought it into school and asked the teacher if he could enter it in the
competition. The teacher said that it was a nice painting and that she would
send it to the competition.

The closing date for the competition wasn’t for a few w
eeks and eventually the
teacher sent away a bundle of paintings, including Kevin’s. After that, Kevin
often asked the teacher if the results of the competition had arrived. The
teacher told Kevin that they hadn’t and that he shouldn’t be too concerned abou
them. After all, the teacher said, there would be hundreds of children entering
the competition.

Still, Kevin was hopeful. One day the teacher called him aside. A letter had
arrived that day announcing the winners of the art competition. The teacher
wed the letter to Kevin. He looked at the names of the children and their
schools. His name was not on the list. For the rest of the day Kevin was angry
and disappointed.

Kevin’s story

points for discussion:

Why did Kevin want to enter the competition?

Did Kevin feel any pressure to succeed? Where was this pressure coming

What do you think Kevin’s reaction to this disappointment will be?

Possible reactions:

Get angry with his teacher or his mother

Get angry with himself for entering the compe

Decide not to enter any more competitions

Decide to stop painting

Think about his expectations. Perhaps he expected too much.

Who could help Kevin cope with his disappointment?

Additional Activities


The children could design a WANTED
poster. The purpose of this activity is to
enhance the children’s awareness of their identity, focusing on interests and
special skills. The children draw or paint a picture of themselves and
underneath list a number of physical and social qualities about
themselves e.g.
age, height, special skills and talents, likes and dislikes.


In order to increase the children’s awareness of their individual identity,
masks could be made either by using templates, paper plates or papiêr mache. The
children could d
ecorate their masks with ribbons, yarn, crepe paper, wallpaper,
pasta shapes, tissue paper or paint.

Circle work

Circle work could be used to give the children an opportunity to learn more
about each other. Suggested rounds could start with:

My favourite

food is …

If I were a colour I’d like to be …

If I were an animal I’d like to be … because …

Unit two


Unit Two


The main themes of the unit are the identification of feelings and the ways in
which these feelings are expressed. Expre
ssing our feelings helps us to
understand them and be at ease with them. Lesson 1 explores the vocabulary used
for expressing feelings through discussion. The children are introduced to a
variety of ways to express feelings e.g. using paint, mime and other

activities in Lessons 2 and 3. Visualisation and relaxation activities are used
in the final lesson.

While it is not the aim of the exercises to elicit expressions of deep feelings,
it is possible that a topic may touch a child in such a way th
at s/he may talk
about some painful experience or cry. When dealing with this, accept how the
child feels and give reassurance if the child is crying

for example indicate
that it is a natural thing to cry when we feel sad. Give time for others to

support for him/her. Making eye contact with two or three others in the
group before the focus is moved helps the child to feel okay about being seen to
be sad or hurt and will make it easier for him/her to link with friends
afterwards. Sometimes a child
needs further support through one
listening, support from home or referral to a health or voluntary agency (with
parental permission).

The lessons in the unit are as follows:

Lesson 1

How Are You Feeling?

Lesson 2

Painting Feelings

Lesson 3

What Hap
pens When I Feel … ?

Additional Activities

Lesson 1

How Are You Feeling?


Expressing our feelings helps us to understand them and be at ease with them.


To help the children extend their vocabulary to express feelings.

To help childre
n express their feelings.

Teacher’s note:

This lesson can be used as a language lesson. The children will tend to have
many slang terms for particular feelings. It is important to accept the
children’s use of these terms. It is also important that you clar
ify what they
mean and provide alternatives.

Resources needed:

Extension work:

Wordsearch (p. 58)



Grading the feeling words


Mime activity



Ask the children to brainstorm all the words they

know that express feelings
(include individual words and phrases). List these on the blackboard.

Tell the children that feelings are very important, because they tell us what is
happening to us. Feelings are like a measure of how we are. Instead of measur
feelings with a ruler or thermometer, we measure them using the words we have.

Grading the feeling words

Divide the children into groups of four or five. Give each group one or two key
feeling words e.g. happiness, anger, fear, sadness, disappointment,

embarrassment. Ask them to think of words we use to describe that feeling. For
example, the word ANGER might include words or phrases such as CROSS, ANNOYED,

Ask the children to grade these words on a scale which

measures Low, Medium and
High. The high end of the scale could show words expressing a large degree of
anger. Some of the words may express similar degrees of emotion. The children
may decide to grade these words together.

Demonstrate this on the blackboa










Ask the children to provide some examples of when different degrees of feeling
might be felt. Point out to the children that it is possible for different
people to feel differently about
the same situation and for us to feel
differently about things from one day to the next. Discuss why that might be so.

Mime activity

Ask the children to play a game called How do you know what I’m feeling? For
this game the children are divided into pairs

and one child in the pair has to
mime a particular feeling. The other child has to ask them two questions.
Firstly they must guess the feeling of the other person by asking: are you …
(happy, angry, sad, disappointed). The second question they must ask is
: why are
you … (happy, angry, sad, disappointed). The child who is miming the feeling
must provide a reasonable answer for the way they are feeling.

Extension Work:

Ask the children to create word searches using feeling words which can be used
later in c
lass. Alternatively the children can complete the wordsearch provided.

The children could draw/paint faces to show a variety of feelings.


Find the following feeling words in the above wordsearch

jealous lonely miserable sad smug

anxious bored
disappointed guilty

arrogant cold confident happy hurt

Lesson 2

Painting Feelings


There is a variety of ways to express feelings.


To use paint to express feelings.

To help the children explore feelings in a non
verbal way.


Emphasis should be placed on using colour to show the feeling rather than to
draw an event. If the children are familiar only with picture painting they may
find this a little unusual. Providing an example could be worthwhile but it can
lead to cop
ying rather than the children coming up with their own ideas.


Paints and paper







Ask the children to mime a variety of feelings. (Include words that express
different degrees of t
he same feelings e.g. anxious, scared, panicky,
terrified.) When the children have finished the mimes and are sitting in their
seats, ask them what colours might be used to represent some of the feelings
they have shown using mime. Do we associate any part
icular colours with
particular feelings? (This can be different for different people.)


Distribute painting materials. Ask the children to think of a time in the recent
past, that stands out for them. What did you feel? This could include some of
he feelings described in the previous lesson. Tell the children that they are
not to draw what happened and not to draw people. Instead ask them to remember
the feeling, to feel it inside them and to use the paint to draw the feeling.
The children should b
e asked to do this exercise quietly.


Display the children’s work. Observe if different children used different
colours to express the same feeling or if a particular colour was used
frequently to express a feeling. Encourage each child to talk a
bout the feeling
shown in his/her picture. The children may comment on what they see in the
painting of others. Label each picture with a title composed by the child who
painted it.

Alternative painting activity

A tape with four or five different pieces of

music expressing different feelings
or moods can be used. The children could be asked to use colours to paint the
feelings they get as they listen to the music. Suggested pieces of music
include: Pachelbel’s Canon, some of the dances from Tchaikovsky’s Th
e Nutcracker
Suite, short selections from Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons, or Mozart’s Requiem.

Lesson 3

What Happens When I Feel …?


Awareness of how our bodies react to different feelings helps us to identify the
feelings and deal with them.


To make the children aware of how their bodies feel when they are tense/relaxed.

To help the children to be at ease with feelings.

To teach children methods of relaxing.


This lesson may require two sessions, with the imaginative exer
cise and
discussion forming the second session. A number of imaginative exercises have
been included. Select what is most suitable for the children. It will be most
important to create the right atmosphere in the classroom. Initially, children
may feel awk
ward closing their eyes. Don’t insist that everyone does.



Learning to relax


Breathing exercise/imaginative journey



The children are asked to mime their feelings. Divide the children into pairs.
One child
in each pair is the mover, the other child is the mirror. When the
mover performs an action, the mirror has to copy the movement. After a few
minutes the roles of mirror and mover are swapped.

Ask the movers to imagine a situation in which they would feel
angry and mime
the feeling ANGER. The mirror copies this. Allow them a couple of minutes to
mime. Again ask them to swap roles. When they have all mimed anger, the
following questions will help in discussing the activity:

What did your body do to show it
was angry?

Did your muscles tighten? What muscles?

Was there tension in your stomach or shoulders?

Learning to relax

Ask the children to sit down and close their eyes. It is important that they
have sufficient space so that they are not touching any othe
r child. Ask them
not to communicate during the exercise.

The children close their eyes and listen to the sounds they hear around them.
Allow one minute. Then elicit from them what they heard and how they felt.

Ask them to relax their neck and shoulder mu
scles. This can be done by straining
the muscles for a few seconds and then allowing them to relax. Continue around
the major muscles in the body. As each muscle group is relaxed ask the children
to become aware of their breathing, breathing in through the
ir noses and out
through their mouths. Have them notice each breath and imagine it as water being
sucked in through their nostrils. Encourage them to try to imagine their breath
as water travelling in through their nostrils, into their lungs and around the
bodies. Allow the children time to relax and to sit in silence. After a while
the children can open their eyes.


Encourage the children to observe the differences between the two exercises i.e.
the mime and the breathing exercises.

What diffe
rent reactions did your body have?

Which would be more difficult to deal with?

Would it be possible to feel both angry and relaxed at the same time?

Can you display anger and relaxation at the same time?

Is it possible? Why not?

Explain to the children

that it is not possible to feel both angry and relaxed
at the same time. One way of dealing with strong feelings, such as anger, is to
breathe deeply and try to relax your body, before you act.

Breathing exercise/imaginative journey

Select the most suitab
le imaginative journey for your children. Explain that you
are going to do another breathing exercise, and that this time, you will be
asking them to imagine a situation that you will read to them. It’s a fantasy

Ask the children to sit down or,
where possible, to lie down on the floor and to
find a comfortable position where they are not touching anybody. Ask them to
breathe gently in through their noses and out through their mouths. Encourage
them to concentrate on their breathing even when ther
e is something else
distracting them. Have the children close their eyes and listen to the following
imaginative journey:

Journey One

With your eyes closed, notice your breathing. Feel the air come into your body
through your nose … down into your lungs …
into your tummy … Imagine that you
are carrying a heavy load down to a river … You are tired from carrying this
load all day … . You can hear the river in the distance and you will be glad
when you get there … You walk down towards the river and when you g
et there you
leave the load on the bank of the river … You feel tired after carrying this
heavy weight … Listen to the music of the river for a moment … Watch the ripples
forming on the water … You decide to step into the river and refresh yourself …
the water on your hands and your face … It is a good river and you trust it
… You step into the river and let the river carry you slowly downstream … It’s
lovely to float along with the current of the river … After a while you come to
rest on the bank of t
he river … You feel relaxed and at ease … You spend some
time enjoying this feeling … Slowly you rise and look around you … Now notice
your breathing … How does your body feel? When you’re ready, open your eyes.

Give the children a few moments to become aw
are of their surroundings. Discuss
the imaginative journey with them:

What was the place where you came to rest like?

How did you feel at the end of this exercise?

What else happened to you in this exercise?

Journey Two

With your eyes closed, notice you
r breathing. Feel the air come into your body
through your nose … down into your lungs … into your tummy … Imagine you are at
home … It is evening time and you are tired after the day … There is nobody else
in the house … Everyone is out … You go upstairs
to your room. Outside you can
hear many different sounds … You listen to them … You listen to the sounds
inside the room … You can hear your own breathing … You can feel your lungs
filling and emptying … Listen to your breath for a moment … (Pause for a fe
moments.) In your room you notice there is a box with your name on it … You
haven’t noticed this before … You go to the box and open it … Open the box and
look at what is inside … (Allow the children time to consider this fantasy.) Now
notice your breath
ing … How does your body feel? When you’re ready, open your

Give the children a few moments to become aware of their surroundings. Discuss
the imaginative journey with them:

How did you feel in your room?

What did you hear outside?

Could you hear
your breathing? What did it feel like?

What did you feel when you looked into the box?

What was in the box? Who had left it there? What did you do with it?

Journey Three

With your eyes closed, notice your breathing. Feel the air come into your body
gh your nose … down into your lungs … into your tummy … You find yourself
on a very busy street … All around you people are running and rushing … Imagine
this place … How do you feel in it? You can hardly hear yourself breathe and
your footsteps are drowne
d by the sounds around you … You concentrate to hear
yourself breathing … In the middle of the crowd you listen carefully to hear
yourself breathe … (Allow the children time to listen to their breathing.) In
the crowd you see your best friend coming toward
s you … You wave and your friend
sees you … You shake hands … Your friend knows a good place to go … You follow
your friend … Your friend brings you to a place that is really nice … You are
happy to be there … Imagine what this place is like … (Allow the c
hildren time
to consider this place.) Now notice your breathing … How does your body feel?
When you’re ready, open your eyes.

Give the children a few moments to become aware of their surroundings. Discuss
the imaginative journey with them:

How did you fe
el on the busy street?

Could you hear your breathing?

How did you feel when you saw your friend?

Where did you go to?

What was it like?

Tell the children that they can learn how to relax so that they are able to do
it on their own. They must concentrat
e on their breathing. If they practise
relaxing in this way it will be useful to them, particularly when they find
themselves in a difficult situation, such as after a row or a difficult day at
school. It is useful to do relaxation exercises regularly with

the children,
particularly at the beginning of the day’s work, to calm them or to close a
period of intense work.

Additional Activities

Feelings book

The children could make/design a dictionary of feelings or a feelings book, in
which they draw/paint a nu
mber of feelings and describe their reaction to these

Feelings colour chart

The children could make/paint a colour chart of feelings. They use colours to
depict feelings. They could work in pairs and the charts could be displayed on
the wall.

cle work

As part of circle work the children are given a piece of paper with the
sentence: I feel worried when … to be completed. The pieces of paper are folded
and put in a container. The children sit in a circle and the container is placed
in the middle.

Each child in turn takes out a slip of paper and reads out the
worry, trying to imagine it as his/her own concern. In the circle, the children
try to come up with workable solutions for each worry discussed.

Unit three


Unit Three


e main theme of this unit is everyday influences that occur in the child’s
life. In Lesson 1 these influences are examined and the lesson also looks at the
effect these influences have on the children’s attitudes. Being part of a group
or a gang has benefi
ts and costs for each individual and these are explored in
Lesson 2. In Lesson 3, influences on the behaviour of the children are
examined. These influences include the positive attributes displayed by the
people the children admire. The final lesson in t
his unit examines the
influences which advertising has on the lives of the children and the various
techniques used in advertising.

The lessons in the unit are as follows:

Lesson 1

Says Who?

Lesson 2

Part of the Gang

Lesson 3

Someone I Admire

Lesson 4


Additional Activities

Lesson 1

Says Who?


Identifying influences on our behaviour helps us to understand our actions and
make better decisions.


To explore ways in which our behaviour is influenced by others.

To look at the

effect of these influences on our attitudes.


Some children may be unwilling to admit that they are influenced by any outside
forces. The idea of complete independence from all outside forces should be
challenged with specific examples. The

lesson may need two sessions.


Worksheets 1, 2: How Do They Influence Us? (pp. 73, 74)









This lesson can be introduced easily by a ga
me of Simple Simon Says. The game
should be started with a child (or you) calling out the actions i.e. Simple
Simon says stand up, or by giving the command without the necessary prefix e.g.
stand up. The game can continue for a short time and you should th
en stop and

Why did you act in a certain way? (Because that’s the game …)

Who decided what you did? (The person who is Simple Simon …)

Why didn’t you make up your own mind? (Because that’s the game …)

You can then suggest to the children that we ar
e involved in many situations
where like the game Simple Simon Says, other people -influence us. Tell them
that they are going to do an exercise where they will look at who or what
influences some of the things that they do.


The children are ask
ed to identify the different people or things that have an
influence on their lives. The following are likely to be identified:



Older brothers/sisters



Sports stars


Other children

The children then think a
bout ways in which they are influenced by these people
or things e.g.

What are some ways that your parents influence you?

How do they influence you?


The worksheet: How Do They Influence Us? (1) gives an example of an issue which
may be importa
nt in the children’s lives i.e. the clothes they wear, and also
lists people who may influence this. Distribute the worksheet and ask the
children to fill in what influences if any, these people have on what clothes
they wear. Discuss the influence various

people have and how they may influence
us. The worksheet can also be used as a trigger for discussion, without filling
it in.

The worksheet: How Do They Influence Us? (2) may be filled in a number of times
using other activities or issues such as:

The fr
iends I have.

The time I go to bed.

The way I spend my free time.

The music I listen to.

The sport I play.


The following questions can be used in the discussion:

How are we influenced?

Why do people try to influence us?

What effect have
these influences on us?

Do we always do what is suggested by others?

Have these influences changed since you were seven years old?

Many of these questions can be explored using role play. Individual children
could take the role of the people who influen
ce them e.g. parents and pop stars.
The subject under discussion e.g. the clothes we wear, can be discussed.


Ask the children to draw the people that they think have had most influence on
them. To do this ask them to think of a decision th
ey made and the people they
thought of when making that decision. When they have completed their picture
talk about the people who influence them most. The pictures could then be

Extension Work:

The children can construct a role play in pairs wh
ere one child is trying to
make a decision and the other child is trying to influence him/her. These
decisions could be simple e.g.

What game will we play?

Whose house will we call to?

What clothes will I wear?

Choose the most appropriate, or ask the

children for suggestions.

How do they influence us? (1)

How do they influence us? (2)

Lesson 2

Part of the Gang


Being part of a group has benefits and costs for each member of that group.
Exploring this can help us to make informed dec
isions about group membership.


To identify groups to which we belong.

To explore the benefits of belonging to certain groups.

To explore the costs of belonging to certain groups.

To examine the types of groups in which we would like to participate


This lesson has two distinct parts. Firstly, there is the formation of the group
and secondly, the activity which the group must do. During the formation of the
groups, observe the behaviour of the children as this will form a basis for
ater discussion. Be careful to try to prevent negative comments from children
to members of their own or other groups. You may wish to separate certain
children from one another i.e. friendship groups. This can be done when the
groups are being formed.

s lesson can bring to the fore many sensitivities of the children. It is
important that it is managed and organised carefully.


Page with numbers marked 1
5 (p. 78)

cut up the numbers

Worksheet: Groups I Belong To (p. 79)

Paper, paints,

paint brushes


Formation of groups

Group activity




Formation of groups

Tell the children that they will each be given a piece of paper with a number on
it. They are not to look at the number until they ar
e told to do so. Half of the
children should get the same number (i.e. number 5). Smaller amounts of the
numbers 1
4 are distributed to the rest of the children. Ensure that there is at
least one group with only two people. Distribute the numbers face down

so they
cannot be seen.

When all the children have a piece of paper ask them to look at their number.
Tell them that other children in the class may have the same number as they
have. Ask them to get up and try to find who has the same number and to form
groups according to these numbers. Watch the behaviours as they occur during
this process. For example, some children may wish to swop numbers in order to be
part of a group with their friends, some children may be delighted that they are
part of the bigge
st/smallest group, some people may feel uneasy about being part
of a small/large group.

When the groups have been formed ask the children the following questions:

How do you feel about a bigger group? Why?

How do you feel about being in a small group? Wh

Group activity

Each group is then given a sheet of paper, a set of paints, and a paint brush.
They are asked to paint the most beautiful flower they have ever seen. Observe
how the groups operate during the activity. In the larger group some children
may take on leadership roles, some children may be unwilling to participate in
the decision
making, and some children may be disappointed with the group’s
work. (If you wish this activity could be extended over a week with the group
being asked to produce
a picture using any media they like.)

When the groups have finished ask them to present their work to the other
children. The five pictures can be displayed on the blackboard.


Discuss what happened in the group, how it worked, if someone took ch
arge, how
it felt in the group.

The idea that belonging to groups has benefits and costs for the individual can
be introduced at this stage. A discussion based on the activities can take place
under some of the following headings:

What advantages were th
ere to being part of your group?

How did you feel about being part of the group?

Did you enjoy the group’s activity?

Were you involved in the decision

What disadvantages were there to being part of the group?

Were the groups different in how t
hey worked? Why?


The children are then given the worksheet: Groups I Belong To. In outlining the
work suggestions can be made about the various groups to which the children
belong, for example, family, extended family, friendship groups, class g
school, sports groups and community groups. They should also fill the bottom
section on A group I would like to be part of. On completion of the worksheet
further discussion can take place.

Groups I belong to

Lesson 3

Someone I Admire


Identifying what we admire helps us become more aware of influences on our


To help the children identify people they admire.

To raise awareness in the children about how they are influenced by people they


It m
ay be helpful to ask the children to think about the people they admire on
the day before doing this exercise. It may be possible for some of the children
to bring in information, a photograph or magazine picture, of someone they
admire. While not necessar
y for the lesson this will help generate more
discussion. This lesson may need two sessions.


Worksheet: Someone I Admire (p. 83)




Survey results




Ask the children

to think about and name people they admire. If they are only
naming famous people, encourage them to think of people in their communities and


Ask the children to pick one particular person that they admire, even though
they may have a
number. Distribute the worksheet: Someone I Admire to each
child. It may be necessary to explain some of the language on the worksheet. The
children fill it out on their own.

Survey results

The results of these surveys can then be tabulated. Collect all th
e sheets from
the children. Divide the children into four groups and divide the sheets into
four bundles.

Give each group one question to examine and a bundle of questionnaires.


Group One

Where do the admired people come from?


Group Two

which area/category does s/he belong?


Group Three

Where do we find out about the admired people?


Group Four

What do we admire about these people? (key words about

Ask each group to extract the appropriate information from their bundl
e of
sheets. The four bundles of sheets are passed around the four groups until each
sheet has been examined fully. Each group can then display their work in bar
chart or line graph form as appropriate.


Question 2: To which of these categories d
oes this person belong?


Some of the children may be willing to talk about why they admire these people.
Allow some time for this.

Using the bar charts or graphs that the children have constructed they can
discuss the type of people they admire
. Certain points should be raised to try
to challenge the children’s choices of admired people. Use the following
questions to encouraage critical thinking:

Why do you like these people?

Are many of these people from abroad? Why is this so?

Are the imag
es that we see of these people always positive? Why do we not
see so many negative images of them?

Do these people influence you? How? Do you think this is a good influence?
Are there bad influences?


The lesson could be altered to focus particul
arly on important people from the
local area.

Someone I admire

Name of person

Think of the person, then try to describe her/his personality.


Where does he or she come from?


To which of these categories does this person belong?

Your family




Your community?








If the person comes from another category, please state which one:


Where did/do you find out about this person?


Why do you admire this person?

Draw or paste a pictu
re of the person you admire on the other side of this page
or on a separate page.

Lesson 4



Making children aware of the subtleties of advertising is helpful in leading
them towards decision


To make the children a
ware of the influence advertising has in their lives.

To help children analyse advertisements and become aware of the techniques being


A variety of printed advertisements

the children can provide some of these

If possible video fo
otage of some T.V. advertisements, or a tape of radio

Information sheet: Methods Used in Advertising (p. 87)

Extension work:

Information sheet: Advertising

How Much it Costs (p. 88)



Types of advertising

tion of advertisements



Ask the children what is the purpose of advertising. In this discussion the
following points should be explained:

An advertisement is a message or communication in which the consumer receives
tion about a product or service. By giving information about the product
the advertiser is hoping the consumer will buy it.

Advertisers pay money to make expensive advertisements because it sells their

Producers of radio, T.V. newspapers, magazi
nes have advertising in order to pay
for their programmes and papers.

In advertising, product makers try to target their audiences. For example, toy
advertisements are shown during daytime T.V. when the maximum number of children
will be watching.

Types o
f advertising

Advertisements come in many forms. Ask the children to brainstorm the different
forms, for example:

A radio advertisement

A television advertisement

A logo

A newspaper advertisement

A poster advertisement

A product placement i.e. on a f
ootball jersey

Distribute the information sheet: Methods Used in Advertising. Talk through each
example. Ask the children to think of advertisements that fit each method.

Classification of advertisements

Display and examine the different advertisements the

children have brought to
class or that you have made available. Ask the children to classify the
advertisements into the various types and methods. If advertisements have been
taped they can also be used for classification. Display the classification on
he walls if appropriate. Discuss the following:

Who are the advertisements targeted at?

What promises do they make?

Extension Work:

Create an advertisement

Distribute the information sheet: Advertising

How Much it Costs.

Divide the children into groups

of four. Ask them to imagine a new product that
they have created. Describe and draw the product. It must be a product they
think will sell.

Tell them that they have an advertising budget of £1,300. They can spend this in
what ever way they wish, dividing

their money between radio, T.V. or print

Ask the children to work on their advertisements

making sure that they stay
within the space or time that has been allocated. Ask them to consider the
audience that they are targeting. Have each group pres
ent their work to the
other children.

In classroom discussion ask the children to reflect on the advertising costs of
some of the products they buy.

Who ultimately pays for this? (the consumer)

What are the advantages and disadvantages of advertising?

dvertising of alcohol

Collect pictures, notice and record places where alcohol is advertised in
sponsorship. Make a collage of these pictures, slogans and places alcohol is
advertised. Discuss:

What are the advertisers telling us?

What are they not tel
ling us?

Methods used in advertising

Appeal to the senses

Pictures or sounds are used to appeal to the senses. Because of the
advertisement a

person can almost ‘taste’ or ‘smell’ the product and therefore buys it.

Common usage

It is suggested that everyb
ody else is using this product.

The buyer doesn’t want to feel left out.


The advertisement uses words like ‘the best’, ‘the greatest’.

The buyer gets a positive image of the product.

The average buyer

A person listens to the average person a
nd takes their advice.

Expert opinion

Experts are used, such as scientists, to show the importance of a product.


A cool, handsome person uses the product. The buyer thinks that s/he will

become like that person by using the product.

Fantasy and roma

Fantastic and unreal situations are shown where the product is used, or
fantastic and

unreal powers are given to the product. The buyer connects these powers with the

Positive side only

Advertisements show only the positive aspects of the pro


how much it costs

Where can you advertise for £1,300?

20 seconds during a popular RTE T.V. programme

(Home and Away or The News).

30 seconds during The Den on RTE.

30 second spot on Independent Local Radio.

30 seconds during
the Gay Byrne Show.

Four 30 second spots during the Gerry Ryan

Radio Show.

One weeks advertising in 30 cinemas nationwide.

Ten weeks in one major cinema.

Half page black and white in the RTE Guide.

Full page black and white in Music Magazine

ot Press).

Three columns of 28 cms. in the Irish Times.

Eight weeks on a large outdoor poster site.

Additional Activities


The children could write a letter to the person they admire in Lesson 3.

Discussion on characteristics of a friend


a discussion on the important characteristics of a friend. The children
can be divided into groups of three/four to rank/prioritise these
characteristics and feedback is taken by you. A chart can be made of the top
five characteristics of a friend.


quiz game

Using the advertisements from Lesson 4 the children can devise a quiz game.

In groups of three or four, the children are given some advertisements. Each
group disguises the name and slogan of the product being advertised and devises
a quiz game
so that the other children can guess what the product is.

Unit Four


Unit Four


The lessons in this unit examine the process of decision
making. Each decision
has an effect on our lives and the children are encouraged to co
nsider the
consequences of different types of decisions in Lesson 1. The children are made
aware of a variety of approaches to decision
making in Lesson 2. Through the
process of role play and discussion in Lesson 3 the children are enabled to
improve thei
r own decision
making skills. Finally, the opportunity is given to
devise strategies for dealing with a number of risky situations.

The lessons in this unit are as follows:

Lesson 1

Types of Decisions

Lesson 2

Ways of Deciding

Lesson 3

I Can Choose



Risky Situations

Additional Activities

Lesson 1

Types of Decisions


Different decisions have different effects on our lives. Understanding the
consequences of decisions helps us make better decisions.


To help the children to consi
der the consequences of different types of


Soft ball

Worksheet: Decisions (p. 96)

cut up

Worksheet: My Decisions (p. 97)




Worksheet: Decisions


Worksheet: My Decisions



Ask the children what decisions they made today. They may need some prompting to
help them think of day to day decisions e.g. getting up when I was called,
eating breakfast, working in school. List these on the blackboard. Point out
t decisions have both effects now and effects in the future.

Alternative introduction

Ball game

This requires a soft ball and the children need to be sitting or standing in a
circle. Give the ball to one child and ask him/her to tell of a decision s/he
e very recently. S/he then throws the ball to someone else who tells of
his/her decision. Keep it going until everyone has been included.


Explore the short

and long
term effects of some decisions, for example:

What if we decided to stop going
to school?

Brainstorm the immediate effects and the effects in the future of such a
decision. Discuss the effect such a decision has on oneself and on others, for
example the effect on family and friends.

Worksheet: Decisions

Divide the children into group
s of three. Give each group a number of situations
from the worksheet: Decisions. (You may add a more appropriate situation in the
blank box.) Ask the children to discuss:


the possible effects, now and in the future


if the decisions would be eas
y or difficult to change.


Ask the children to report their work to the other children.

Discuss what decisions were the most serious.

Worksheet: My Decisions

Ask the children to identify three decisions:

A decision I made to

A decision

I made last week

A decision I made this year.

Distribute the worksheet: My Decisions. Remind the children that our decisions
can affect us and other people.

Allow time for the children to complete it, and then in class discuss some of
the effects of th
eir decisions on themselves and on others.


My decisions

A decision I made today:


A decision I made last week:


A decision I made this year:


Lesson 2

Ways of Deciding


Being aware of the ways we make decisions will help us understand and evaluate

our decision
making style.


To help the children become aware of their decision
making style.

To encourage awareness of the variety of approaches to decision


Information sheet: Ways of Deciding (p. 100)



Ways of deciding

Group work




Ask the children how they would feel and what they would do if they had won the

What decisions would you make?

What would you do first?

Point out to the children that
each of us has a different way of making such
decisions. Some people will want to do whatever they feel like doing, some will
think and plan before deciding, while others will be unsure what to do.

Ways of deciding

Distribute the information sheet: Ways of

Deciding. Ask the children to look at
the statements. Discuss the different ways of making decisions.

Group work

Divide the children into groups of four. Ask them to talk about a decision they
made in the last week and to say how they made it. What style
did you use?


Discuss ways children made their decisions. Are some ways more suited to some
decisions? Write a number of situations on the blackboard. The following
situations could be used or the children could write/tell their own situations:

A friend asks you to go to his/her house. You agree. Later the same day
another friend rings you and asks you to come over to go rollerblading.

Your friends are going to the cinema/a match/a party. You would like to
go, but you are looking after your you
ng brother/sister.

Your best friend offers you a cigarette/cannabis/glue.

The children are asked to talk about the different ways of handling each of
these situations and then to decide how they would handle them.

Ask the children what they learned from t
his exercise and discuss with them how
they might use this new knowledge.

Ways of deciding


I just felt like it.



I thought about all the possibilities and decided that …


Everyone else was doing it so I did it too.


I didn’t want to make a
decision so I let whatever was going to happen,


It felt like the right thing to do.


I talked to someone

I trust.

Lesson 3

I Can Choose


We have choices and we can decide what is best for us.


To improve decision
making s


Worksheet: A Conflict I Have Had (p. 103)



Role play and discussion




Ask the children to identify situations where they are told to do different
things by differen
t people (e.g. smoking

what parents say, what friends say,
what I’ve read). Choose one situation and illustrate the messages on the
blackboard as follows:

Ask the children to choose a situation and to draw a diagram with the different

Role pl
ay and discussion

Select one situation worked on by the children. Have two children role play the
conflict going on inside the person

(will I, won’t I?), with each taking a
different side of the conflict. Talk about situations where they felt

and discuss ways of dealing with them.


The children work individually or in groups to complete the worksheet: A
Conflict I Have Had. To conclude, the children could talk about what they have

A conflict I have had

My side and the other s

Select a situation that happened recently with your parents, brothers, sisters,
close friend, other friends or class mates. Write the information about the
situation in the form of newspaper headlines, which will make the problem and
your solution clea
r to the reader.

Lesson 4

Risky Situations


Devising strategies to minimise risk helps create a safer environment for


To help children evaluate risky situations.

To devise a variety of alternative actions for
risky situations.


Worksheet 1, 2: Risky Situations (pp. 106, 107)



Group work




Ask the children to describe risky situations in which they or others have been
involved. Dis

How do we feel in risky situations?

If something is dangerous how do we decide whether or not to do it?

Group work

Divide the children into groups of three or four and select a number of the
situations from Risky Situations (1). Ask them to discuss

the situations using
the questions on Risky Situations (2). (These could be written on the


Using the work that the children have done, discuss each of the situations
described. Devise a simple strategy with the children for assessi
ng risks e.g.

What are the dangers to me?

What are the dangers to others?

What are the advantages of the situation?

Risky situations (1)


You are at home on your own. The doorbell rings. You are not
expecting anyone and you have been asked to stay



You are walking home alone one evening. You are tired. A car stops
and the driver asks for directions. S/he invites you to travel in the car as far
as your home.


Some friends are making plans to mitch from school. You know what
they are doing
and that they will expect you to join them.


Your friends are playing in an old building. They play dares using
an old staircase, to see who can climb the highest. The staircase is obviously


You need money for spending on a school tour. You
cannot get it from
your parents. You see some money lying around a friend’s house.


Your older brother/sister offers you a cigarette. They tease you
about being a baby and being afraid to try smoking.


A friend says that if you sniff glue it makes yo
u feel great. S/he
says they are going to try it at the weekend. You are invited to come and join


A group of your friends decide to go swimming in a nearby river. You
know this river is not safe, but everyone is looking forward to going.

Risky s
ituations (2)

What are the risks involved in this situation?

What could the person do to make the risk less?

Give three possible decisions that the person could make in this situation.

What would you do?

Additional Activities

Circle work

ring circle work the children are split into groups of four. Each child is
given a problem which the other three children in the group try to help him/her
resolve. For example:


You are given some homework. You know nothing about the subject.


You are
invited to a cousin’s party but you don’t know what clothes to


You want to make your mother a birthday cake, but have never cooked
anything before.

Comic strip

The children form groups of four. They make up a story about a decision
n. They then draw a sequence of pictures in boxes, showing this story.
They number the first and last box only. The pictures are cut into their
separate boxes and muddled up. The groups then take turns to put each other’s
pictures into the correct sequence

and tell the stories.

Unit five


Unit Five


This unit examines attitudes to alcohol in our society. In Lesson 1 appropriate
and inappropriate uses of alcohol by adults are discussed with the children.
Factual information is provided for bo
th you and the children in Lesson 2. The
children are made aware of the nature of addiction in Lesson 3 and are led to an
understanding of the effect of addiction on family members through story and
case study.

It is necessary to be sensitive to the exper
iences of the children in relation
to misuse of alcohol.

The lessons in the unit are as follows:

Lesson 1


How We See It

Lesson 2



Lesson 3

Alcoholism and the Family


If work on other substances is appro
priate for particular children, refer to
Units Three, Four and Five in the Sixth Class Programme.

Lesson 1


How We See It


Examining attitudes to alcohol in our society helps inform our attitudes and
behaviour in relation to alcohol.


To examine attitudes to alcohol.

To discuss appropriate and inappropriate use of alcohol.


Sensitivity is required as there may be children who have experienced
difficulties in relation to alcohol misuse.


Blank ca

one per child

Large sheets of blank paper

one per group

Alcohol stories (p. 114)

Worksheet: What I Think about Achohol (p. 115)








Give each child a blank card. As
k them to write ALCOHOL in the centre and words
they associate with alcohol around the edge.

In groups, ask them to share as much as they wish. Using the large sheets of
paper, they then produce a group diagram. Each group presents their diagram to
the res
t of the children.



Distribute the stories on alcohol. Read the stories aloud or have the children
read them. After each story discuss the issues arising.

Story 1

Why were people drinking at the wedding?

Did this drinking cause any di

Are there other celebrations where people drink?

Did Katie enjoy the day?

Story 2

What effects has alcohol had in this story?

What people were hurt by it? Was Tom’s Dad hurt by his use of it?

How might Tom feel about the situation?


What effects has alcohol had in this story?

Who were the people who were hurt by John’s drinking? (Include his

Why did John drive the car? (peer pressure, impaired judgement due to
alcohol use, wanting to appear cool to his friends)

How will

his parents react to John’s behaviour?

How will John feel about what has happened?

Story 4

Why did Maria have a drink?

Why did she continue to drink even though she didn’t like the taste?

How will she feel when she meets her neighbours again?


Distribute the worksheet: What I Think about Alcohol. Ask the children to fill
in the sheet giving their own opinion about alcohol and what they think about
the effects of alcohol. Use this as a basis for discussing attitudes to alcohol
amongst the child
ren in the class.




Katie was invited to her cousin’s wedding. There was great excitement and
preparation for the wedding. In the church, Katie saw her cousin dressed in
white. Afterwards, at the reception there was a big meal. People c
ould choose to
drink wine at the meal. Later on, there was music at the wedding. The band were
playing and everyone went out dancing. There was a bar at the wedding and many
people were buying drinks. Everybody seemed to be in great form. People were
ng, laughing, singing and talking. It was great fun. Katie and her parents
stayed in the hotel that night as her parents had decided it was not safe to
drive after drinking.


Tom lives with his brother, sister, mother and father. Tom goes to school
and e
njoys playing with his friends. His father drinks a lot. Sometimes Tom
doesn’t see him in the evenings because he comes home late when Tom is in bed.
Tom’s mother worries a lot about her husband. Sometimes Tom sees his mother
looking at the clock and getti
ng upset in the evenings. He worries about her.
Once, when his Dad came home, he heard his parents shouting in the kitchen. Tom
felt very upset and alone.


Aidan has an older brother called John. John is 18 and he recently got his
driving licence. Someti
mes John gets a loan of their Dad’s car to go out. One
evening he got a loan of the car to go to a party. Before he went, Aidan heard
his Dad telling John to be careful and not to do anything foolish. Later that
night there was a phone call to the house fr
om the Gardaí. Aidan heard his
father answering the phone. His father became very upset. He told Aidan and his
mother what had happened. John had been drinking at the party and was driving
people home. On his way home he crashed into another car. John and
some of his
friends are in the hospital. The driver of the other car is also injured.


Maria went to a party on her road. At the party there were bottles and
cans of beer lying around. Some of the older people at the party were drinking
beer. Maria decid
ed to have a go at drinking too. She didn’t really like the
taste, but she liked knowing that she was drinking beer. When she had finished
the first can, Maria felt very light

headed. She danced and talked to people.
Maria drank more. After a while, she f
elt quite sick. She wished she hadn’t been
drinking so much. She tried to get to the bathroom but there was someone there.
She got sick in the hallway. Her neighbours, who owned the house, had to clean
up after her. Maria felt really embarrassed.

What I

think about alcohol

Write down your thoughts and feelings about alcohol.

Put one thought into each speech bubble.

Lesson 2




Knowing the effects of alcohol helps us to make responsible decisions about its


To provide information on the effects of alcohol.


Some children may have experience of misuse of alcohol, either directly or
indirectly, and this should be borne in mind.


Quiz sheet: Alcohol (p. 118)

Teacher material for
alcohol quiz (p.119)

Teacher material: Alcohol (p. 120)






Write the word Alcohol on the blackboard. Around this word write the words Who?
What? When? Where? How? Why? Using this format ask the chi
ldren some questions:

Who uses alcohol?

What effects does alcohol have on you?

When do people use alcohol?

Where do people drink?

How does alcohol affect you?

Why do people drink?


Distribute the quiz sheet: Alcohol. It may be necessary to read t
his with the
children. Ask the children to fill in the true or false answers. When the
children have completed the quiz, discuss the questions and clarify information
as necessary. Additional information on alcohol is contained in Teacher
Material: Alcohol
, and the answers to the quiz are on page 120.

Ask the children what they have learned about the effects of alcohol.

Quiz sheet: alcohol




Alcohol can be bought only by people over

18 years of age.




It is against the law for a person under 18

to drink or have alcohol in a public place.




Alcohol affects

the brain.




Alcohol makes you braver

and more exciting.




Alcohol makes you

more talkative.




People are always able to stop drinking when



they choose.


If a woman is pregnant drinking alcohol can



affect her baby.


Alcohol is a cause of

road accidents.




Alcoholics are usual
ly homeless

and on the streets.




An alcoholic can easily decide

to stop drinking.




A young person cannot have

problems with alcohol.



Teacher material for alcohol quiz


True. A person under 18 who is convicted of buying alco
hol may be fined




True. The brain is the organ most sensitive to alcohol.


False. Alcohol impairs judgement and control so you may think that you are
more exciting!


True. With alcohol in moderate amounts people tend to talk more.


alse. Many people find it difficult to stop drinking. Many alcoholics
never stop drinking. Some however do, often after much pain and trauma for
themselves and their families.


True. Alcohol in the mother’s bloodstream reaches the baby’s circulation
can cause poor growth.




False. Alcoholics are just ordinary people. Many live with families and
children. Only a small number end up homeless.


False. It is very difficult as an alcoholic has become dependent on


False. The number
of teenagers who are being treated for alcohol problems
is increasing.

Teacher Material



Alcoholic drinks contain mostly water and ethanol which is produced as a
result of fermenting sugars from fruit, vegetables or grains. Different drinks
ntain different amounts of ethanol.


When alcohol is taken into the body it finds its way into the bloodstream
very quickly. It can start having an effect five to ten minutes after it is
taken. The effect of alcohol depends on a number of factors

the t
ype of drink,
how quickly it is drunk, when food was last eaten, the size of the person who is
drinking and the amount of alcohol taken.


Alcohol can be measured in units. One unit is contained in a half
pint of
beer or a glass of wine. The effect of alc
ohol on an adult could be described as

two units

a person feels more relaxed, less worried and more talkative.

three units

a person’s co
ordination begins to decrease and their
ability to judge and make decisions decreases. More than three u
nits can result
in staggering, double vision and obvious drunkenness. A person can have less
control and have extreme responses (becoming aggressive, picking fights,
crying easily).

Continued drinking can lead to a person going unconscious because th
alcohol switches off the part of the brain which controls our breathing.


Studies have shown that a young person is forty times more at risk of
having an accident after two drinks than a young person who has not been
drinking. Even a small amount of al
cohol can cause a person to have an accident.


People can become dependent. A person who is addicted to alcohol is called
an alcoholic.


Alcoholism means a person is dependent on alcohol. They are unable to control
their drinking and believe th
at they cannot manage without it. They feel that
without alcohol they would not be able to cope with life. As an alcoholic
continues drinking s/he changes. Relationships with his/her family and friends
suffer. There are often financial problems. An alcohol
ic may have memory lapses

s/he forgets what has happened to him/her. The alcoholic’s whole life is
centred on alcohol and drinking.

Lesson 3

Alcoholism and the Family


Creating an awareness of alcoholism and its effect on the family fosters
understanding of the associated problems.


To explore the nature of addiction.

To help the children’s understanding of the effects of addiction on family


This lesson may require two sessions. Particular sensitivity is requi
red, as
some chilren may be living in homes where there is alcoholism. Awareness of your
own attitudes to alcohol is also important.


Story: Maria’s Diary (pp.124,125)



Drawing and discussion





Ask the children to tell the other children something they do that they would
find hard to stop doing. Some children may say watching T.V., others, eating
sweets or playing football. Discuss the positive and negative aspects of so
me of
these activities.

Drawing and discussion

Explore what being hooked means by asking the children to draw a picture of a
person who is hooked on something. Suggest some of the following situations and
let the children pick who they will draw:

Peter, w
ho is hooked on sweets

Daniel, who is hooked on football

Pamela, who is hooked on reading

Carmel, who is hooked on T.V.

Ask them to try to show how the person looks, feels, acts, and the consequences
of being hooked. They can use words and phrases in th
eir picture. Encourage the
children to share their work and talk about what being hooked means. Ask them
how the people they drew would feel, if they were deprived of whatever they’re
hooked on.

Tell the children that people who continuously drink or use o
ther drugs, even
when it causes problems with their family, friends, health or work, are hooked.
They feel that they have to have it. We call this alcoholism or drug addiction.
Try to come to a definition of addiction that approaches the following:

An addi
ction means that someone uses a substance or activity in order to feel

Ask the children what alcoholics/addicts might be addicted to.

The following are addictions that might come up for discussion:

alcohol, heroin, ecstasy, tobacco, gambling.

out that most alcoholics/addicts are just ordinary people, who need help
to stop.


Distribute the story: Maria’s Diary. Introduce it as being a story from a place
distant from where the children live. Read aloud the story or ask the children
to read i
t. Ask the children the following questions:

What sort of an addiction has Maria’s father?

What effect is his addiction having on Maria’s family?

What is Maria’s life like?

What are some of Maria’s feelings?

What are some of her mother’s feelings?


Having identified some of the feelings in relation to this story, ask the
children what Maria could do if she finds things too difficult.

Who could Maria talk to?

Who might she trust?

Why might she be reluctant to talk to someone?

What fears
might she have about talking to someone outside the family?

Mention that Al
Anon and Al
Teen help children of alcoholics and their
families and that doctors can let people know where else they can go for help.

Maria’s diary


It’s late and Dad stil
l isn’t in. He’s hardly been in at all for the past few
days. I suppose he’s been drinking again. Mammy is wrecked. This evening I heard
her crying while she was making dinner. She fell asleep on the sofa while I was
doing my homework. We had a lot of home
work today.


There was a row at home today. Daddy came home and he was drunk. Mammy got
really mad with him and he told her to shut up. We were told to go upstairs. We
all went into our bedrooms. Gillian started to cry. I told her not to worry,

it would be alright, but I really didn’t believe that. We didn’t get any
homework done and we went to bed early. Mammy came up to me in my room and I
told her that I needed to do my homework. She said she would give me a note in
the morning.


I g
ot into trouble at school today. I had no homework done because of last
night. I went into Mammy to get a note from her this morning. She said not to
worry, that she would go down to the school later on. I told my teacher that I
had no homework done. He ga
ve out to me and told me to go to the principal. The
principal wrote a note home to Mammy. When I got home Mammy was in bed because
she wasn’t feeling well. I made the dinner for Sarah and Gillian. Mammy read the
note from school but she didn’t say anythin
g about it. Everything seems to be
going wrong. I was upset after school today but I didn’t want anyone to hear, so
I pulled the bedclothes over my head.


I was supposed to have money for swimming today but I forgot it. The teacher
said I could go
but that I would have to bring it next week. I’m able to swim
because when we were small Daddy used to bring us swimming. That was before he
started to drink. Things were good then. Mammy says he is an alcoholic. She says
it’s like a disease. I hope there
is a cure for it.


In school today we were doing a project on homeless people. Someone wrote that
only alcoholics were homeless. I didn’t say anything but I know that’s not true.
Mammy had a nice dinner for us today when we came home. She said she wa
s sorry
about the past few days, but that she was exhausted after the row with Daddy.
Daddy came home early today and brought us shopping. I didn’t want to talk with
him because I’m cross with him.

Unit six

Looking Back, Looking Forward

Unit Six

g Back,

Looking Forward

The purpose of this unit is to review the work which the children have done
during the year and to enable them to identify how they have changed. It is
important that we evaluate and appraise the work that we do as we are
ly learning and changing.

This unit consists of one lesson.

Lesson 1

I’m celebrating All I’ve learned

Lesson 1

I’m Celebrating

all I’ve learned


We are continually learning and changing.


To review the work of the Programme.

To help
children identify how they have changed.


The children will need their folders in order to review the work.


Children’s folders.

Worksheet: I’m Growing and Changing (p. 132)

Evaluation sheet (p. 133)

Certificate (p. 134)


Introduction and review



Evaluation and certificate


Introduction and review

Tell the children that today they are going to look back at what they have done
during the Programme, think about how they have chan
ged and what they have
learned, and talk about their hopes. Give the children time to look through the
work in their folders. Review the work by asking the children to name the
different things they did in the class. They may include topics or types of
ivities. Write these on the blackboard e.g.

Add items covered in class that the children did not include. Ask them what they
enjoyed best. Encourage them to express their thoughts and feelings about the


Ask the children to think about when

they started the Programme

and how they
think they have changed now. Distribute the worksheet: I’m Growing and Changing
and ask them to complete it. Talk about some of the ways they have changed. Ask
the children to complete the sentence:

One thing I l
earned in the past year …


Have each child decide on one (achievable) thing they would like to do in the
near future. Ask them to illustrate or to write a paragraph about this. Ask them
to form small groups to talk about what they would like to
do and how they would
achieve this. Get feedback from the groups and discuss.

Evaluation and certificates

Ask the children to complete the Evaluation Sheet. Organise a ceremony to
present the certificates, inviting parents if possible. The children can dis
their folders and art work for parents. Invite them to discuss their work with
their parents.

Draw or write about one way that you have changed during the past year.

Draw or write about one thing you learned in the Programme.

w or write about one thing you did that you really enjoyed in the Programme.

Evaluation sheet

Review of the Programme


What did you like about the Programme?


What would you change in the Programme?


Write down three things you learned

I le

I learned

I learned


An Experience Centered Curriculum,

Walsh, D: Educational Studies Document No. 17 UNESCO Paris, 1974.

Blood Guts: A Working Guide to Your Inside.

Alison, L. : Little Brown & Co, Paris 1976.

Creative Moveme
nt and Dance in Groupwork. Payne, H.: Winslow, 1995.

Creative Drama in Groupwork. Jennings S.: Winslow, 1993.

Developing Facilitation Skills. Prendiville, P.: Combat Poverty Agency, 1995.

Emotional Intelligence. Goleman, D.: Harper Collins,1995.

esteem. I.N.T.O. Publication, 1995.

Enhancing Self
esteem in the Classroom. Lawrence, D.: PCP Education Series,

Essential Teaching Skills. Kyriacou, C.: Stanley Thornes (Publishers) Ltd.,

Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligence

Gardner, H.: London: Fontana 1993.

Games, Games, Games: A Co
operative Games Book. The Woodcraft Folk, 1989.

Health Guides: Drugs. Naik, A.: London: Hodder Children’s Books, 1997.

Learning Together. Fountain, S.: Stanley Thornes, 1990.

Let’s Play Toget
her. Masheder, M.: London: Green Print 1989.

Positive Discipline in the Classroom.

Nelson, J., Lish, L., and Glenn, H: Prima Publishing 1997.

Quick Guides: Drug Education for Children 4

11: Daniels Publications, 1995.

Quality Circle Time. Mosley, J.: L.
D.A., 1996.

esteem, the Key to Your Child’s Education. Humphries, T.: Cork, 1993.

Turn Your School Around. Mosley, J.: L.D.A., 1993.

Winners All: Co
operative Games for All Ages. Pax Christi, 1980.

Your Child’s Self

Step by Step Guidelines fo
r Raising Responsible,
Productive, Happy Children. Corkille
Briggs, D.: Doubleday, 1995.

Your Choice

A Personal Skills Course.

McConnon, S.: Interpersonal Communication, 1990.


Bí Folláin: Programme of Social and Health Education.

western Health Board, 1992.

Building Self
esteem in the Elementary Classroom.

Reasoner, R.: Consulting Psychologists Press Inc., 1992.

Education for Love. St. Mary’s College, Centre for Research and Curriculum

Esteem Builders. Borba, M.
: Jalmer Press, 1989.

Health For Life, 1 and 2.

The Health Education Authority’s Primary School Project: Nelson 1989.

100 Ways to Enhance Self
concept in the Classroom.

Cranfield, J.: Longwood Professional Books, 1994.

Primary School Health Education Pro
gramme. North Western Health Board. 1992.

Resource Materials for Relationships and Sexuality Education. 1998.

Actualisation in the Classroom. O’Donnchadha, R.: E.T.C. Consult, 1996.

esteem Sets A and B. White, M.: Daniels, 1992.

Skills for Primar
y School Children (Lesson Cards). Tacade.

The Primary School Drugs Pack. Healthwise Helpline Ltd., 1995.

The Stay Safe Programme:

Personal Safety Skills for Primary Schools. Child Abuse Prevention Programme,

Windows on the World. Columban Fathers an
d Sisters, 1992.