This session will explore the third LEADS strategy: Act. WITS LEADS can show others that everyone has the power to act constructively during a conflict or bullying incident in order to minimize harm. This strategy builds upon the ability to look beyond our first impressions and explore more than one point of view.
To begin, show students the LEADS poster, and review the first two strategies: Look and listen and Explore points of view. Discuss the following questions:
What did we learn about the strategy Explore points of view? Everyone has their own point of view. Even those involved in the same situations will have different perspectives.
Some people do not always clearly communicate their point of view. What are some ways that you can better understand someone’s true point of view? Ask questions that begin with “Do you…?” (e.g., Do you mean…? Do you think…? Do you feel…? Do you want…?)
Each activity in this segment will take three to four classes to complete. Activities are divided into three levels:
GETTING STARTED ACTIVITIES: Suitable for students being introduced to LEADS for the first time.
NEXT STEP ACTIVITIES: Used to reinforce LEADS strategies that have been introduced in a previous session or year.
REINFORCEMENT ACTIVITIES: Suitable for students who have been using the LEADS Programs for two or more years.
Getting Started Activities
Complete one of the Getting Started Activities below and then read the book Courage by Bernard Waber. Use the questions and activities in the book’s associated lesson plan to reinforce the Act strategy.
IMPORTANT IDEAS: Why do inner worlds matter?
Children who witness bullying or aggression suffer a significant level of anxiety, fear, and guilt. In order to encourage and support children to actively respond or seek help, it is crucial to address the feelings bystanders experience when they witness conflicts or bullying among their peers.
The objective of this activity is to explore and understand key emotional states. Tell students you are going to call out a list of emotions. As you call out each emotion, students are to freeze in a position that represents it. Occasionally select a statue to draw attention to the body language and facial expression. List of possible emotions include:
2. EMOTION TABLEAUX: SHOWING EMOTIONAL SITUATIONS
Print the emotions from the list in the previous activity onto strips of paper. Organize students into groups of four. Give every student a strip of paper, but tell them not to share their word with their classmates.
Every student then takes a turn at creating a statue based on the word they see on their paper. The rest of the small group should try to determine what emotion is being demonstrated and then join the statue in a pose that would best interact with the emotional state being shown. Once all members of the small group are part of a tableau, the student with the paper may reveal the emotion.
Have students discuss the exercise, using the following guiding questions:
What did you look at in order to determine the emotion being shown?
Why did you choose the pose you chose in response to the emotion you saw?
Now that you know the emotion, how would you change your pose?
How do you think this activity ties in with the strategy Act? In order to constructively act in response to a situation it is important to pay careful attention to the people involved, their body language, their words, and the tone of their words.
There are several ways you can act when you see a situation that is hurtful to you or someone else. This activity explores the ways you can respond to someone who has been hurt. Distribute the Feeling and Caring handout to students, asking them to read the scenarios and answer the questions.
Another way to Act is to say something about what you are seeing and feeling. Who are the people you can talk to when you see someone who may be hurt by someone else? Distribute the Tell Someone handout to students, asking them to read the scenarios and answer the questions.
Organize students into groups of three or four. Ask them to share the scenarios they came up with for question six with each other, discussing who they could turn to for help in each situation.
Divide the class into five groups. Hand out a different Ouch! Your Silence Hurts handouts to each group and ask them to discuss and write down the possible actions and consequences for each bystander response. Bystanders’ responses are based on their justifications – the reasoning behind their action or inaction. Justifications are ways to defend your reasons.
When the small group has finished discussing and writing their ideas down, ask them to exchange their sheet with another group and add to that group’s written answers. Provide enough time for each group to review and add to each handout.
When all the handouts have been reviewed, engage the class in a discussion about the common patterns of concerns and consequences described in each handout.
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