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Shaping Students Templates for Managing Conflict across Their Lifespan

Purpose:

To understand and learn that:

  • Anger is a normal emotion
  • Angry emotions release adrenalin into our bodies
  • Adrenalin makes us feel charged full of energy. This makes it hard to problem solve and make good decisions
  • Science proves that there are 3 strategies to decrease adrenaline in the body


Materials Needed:

  • Whiteboard
  • The Science of Angry PowerPoint on CD (note: slides 6, 8, 9, 17,19, 21, 22, 23 have animations activated with mouse click or enter)
  • Body outline worksheet, 1 per group (suggest enlarge to A3)
  • 3 glass jars each filled half way with water from the beginning
  • Soy Sauce
  • 2 straws
  • A glass of water


Introduction

PPT slide 1: “Today we are going to talk about the science of angry. We will look at what happens to our bodies when we are angry. We will use science to explore and talk about ways to reduce our anger.”


PPT slide 2:

“Everyone feels angry sometimes. We can feel angry for different reasons. Yesterday/last week/recently I felt angry when <insert a personal anecdote/example>. Brainstorm with students what makes them angry, write up on the whiteboard.


PPT slide 3 and 4: “Feeling angry is a normal human emotion, we’re now going to look at what happens to our bodies when we feel angry”. Go to slide 4. Break the class into small groups and hand out the body outline sheet. “Work together and talk about how your bodies feel when you are angry. Mark the parts of the body showing what happens to your body.” After 5 minutes, bring the class back together and elicit responses from students.


PPT slide 5: Focus in on the slide, highlighting responses from students. “Do you have any ideas why these things happen to our bodies when we are angry? Discuss briefly.


PPT slide 6: “Remember that anger is a normal emotion. We’re going to use science and chemistry to learn why our bodies feel this way when we are angry.”


PPT slide 7: Have all three jars half filled with water ready. Read slide 7. “The adrenalin spreads through your body in your blood.” Point to the jars. “Imagine that each of these jars is the blood in your body.”


PPT Slide 8. “For example, they broke my Lego! That makes me angry!” When this happens adrenalin immediately spreads through the body. Watch as I pour soy sauce into the 1st jar. See how the chemical spreads all through the water? The adrenalin goes into the body through the bloodstream and spreads through the whole body just like the soy sauce spreads through the water.”


PPT Slide 9 “The adrenalin has reached your hands (clench your hands), your heart beats faster (indicate beating heat with your hand against your chest), you feel like moving your body (demonstrate), your face feels hot, you breath more quickly and you want to yell” (demonstrate).


PPT slide 10 and 11: “The adrenalin charges our bodies full of energy, but this is angry energy.” Go to slide 11 and read the text with actions. “When you have angry energy you will find it harder to make good decisions.”


PPT slide 12: “Adrenalin isn’t only released when you are angry. If you are stressed, scared or excited adrenalin is also released into your bloodstream. Look at the skydiver, how is he feeling?” Elicit responses. “He is excited, and also he may be a little scared, see how his body is reacting” (point out the hands clenched etc). “Adrenalin can be good as well, can you think of other examples when you have good adrenaline in your body?” Briefly discuss, focus on positive experiences, e.g. ‘kicking a goal’, ‘going to a party’, ‘watching an exciting movie’.


PPT slide 13 and 14: Read the slides.


PPT slide 15: “How could we decrease the adrenalin in our bodies when we are angry? Elicit responses and write up on the whiteboard.


PPT Slide 16:

“You’ve come up with some great strategies. Science has proven that there are 3 ways to decrease the angry chemical adrenalin in our bodies. These strategies can help us to make better decisions and feel in control of ourselves, even though we are feeling angry.”

“Let’s look at the first strategy, I’ll give you a clue.” “How could we get oxygen into the blood stream?” If someone mentioned ‘breathing’, pick up on that comment and lean over the first jar, take a deep breath and use a straw to blow deep bubbles.


PPT slide 17: “Yes, the first strategy is to get air by deep breathing as many times as you need. When you take deep breaths, oxygen goes into your bloodstream and decreases the adrenaline. You can remember how to do this by breathing in as if you’re smelling a flower and breathing out as if you’re blowing bubbles. Let’s all do some deep breathing.” As students breathe slowly say “Smell the flower, blow the bubbles.”


PPT slide 18: “How else can we decrease the adrenalin in our bloodstream? What’s another situation that makes you angry? Elicit responses or select from the brainstorm list on the whiteboard from earlier. State the situation. “I’m now going to put some soy sauce into the second jar. See how the chemical is spreading through just as it does in your body. Now watch what I do.” Pick up the glass of water and pour it into the 2nd jar. What is happening to the adrenaline in my bloodstream when I add water?” Elicit responses, focus in on that it is being reduced/diluted by adding the water and decreasing the angry adrenalin in the body. Lead this to a ‘have a drink ‘get water’ response.


PPT slide 19: “The second strategy is to get water and you can do this in a number of ways.” Read through the slide. “When you drink water, the oxygen in the water helps to filter out the adrenalin in our bloodstream. This means that the angry adrenalin is not so strong.”


PPT slide 20: “Science has proven that there is one more way to decrease the adrenalin in our bodies. Let’s choose a 3rd situation that makes us angry. Name the situation. “I’m now going to put some adrenalin into the third jar. See how the chemical is spreading through just as it does in your body. Now watch what I do.” Using a straw, vigorously agitate the liquid. “What’s happening to the adrenalin?” Elicit responses, focus in on a ‘moving it around’ response.


PPT slide 21: “The 3rd strategy is to get moving. Moving our bodies helps to move the adrenaline around and burn it out of our bloodstream. If you’re inside you can do small movements like clenching and unclenching your fists, holding on to the sides of your chair and trying to lift your body off the chair using the strength of your arms and rolling your shoulders. Let’s try these small movements together.” Go through the first 3 movements on the slide, demonstrate and do together. “If you’re outside, you can do some star jumps or go for a run.”


PPT slide 22: “We’re now going to do an activity to help us remember what we’ve learnt today. This part of the lesson will be determined by the teacher. See below for a list of suggested activities. Some activities can be done on the day of the lesson, individually, in pairs or small groups. Other activities may go over a few days or be set as pair or small group projects. If the activity is to go over a time, use this part of the lesson for planning. Suggestions are:

  • Make a strategy spinner to use when angry
  • Movement game using actions (standing and then sitting ideas)(small and large movements), (indoor and outdoor ideas)
  • Make a jingle/song 'If you're angry and you know it take a drink, slurp slurp' etc
  • Make a Chatterbox using strategies
  • Make a memory card game
  • Make a board game
  • Make a poster
  • Make a trailer in iMovie
  • Make a documentary
  • Role play
  • Create an Infomercial
  • Reader's Theatre
  • Rap
  • Make a puzzle
  • Create a book
  • Write a newspaper article/persuasive text
  • Write a story
  • Make a mascot for each strategy
  • Reinforce breathing by blowing object such as pinwheels, cotton balls with a straw etc, set up stations around the room for students to move between
  • Create a Venn diagram using - which strategy works best for me?


PPT slide 23: This is the end message of the lesson, prior to going through the slide, discuss with students what they have learnt today and elicit strategies individual students think might work best for them and why. Finally, go through the slide summarizing the main concepts of the lesson.

Finish with: “During the week, if you feel yourself getting angry try out some of the strategies to decrease the angry adrenalin in your body. Next week we can talk about how you went.”