1 class periods of 90 minutes each
- Thinking & Reasoning
- Social & Civic Responsibility
Lesson about stress and time management and how to deal with stress.
- Quiet piano music, no recognizable tune that has lyrics
- Piece of candy for each student
- Fun music for Laughter activity
Background for Teachers
Information on stress, what it is, kinds, how stress appears in our bodies, why it is important to learn how to deal with stress
Stress Management Activities:
- Healthy Diet and Exercise- For this activity I usually do a little bit of aerobics with my students to get them up and moving around. Then we talk about how the body will stay in a better relaxed state and have lower amounts of stress in the body if you exercise regularly and eat healthy. (If your funds allow you can also have a healthy snack there for them that day).
- Total body tense and release- This activity is done either on the floor or in a chair. Tense every muscle in your body (I tell them including face muscles) at the same time then hold it for about 15 seconds, then release and let a good breath out, too. Do it again. You can also have them lay down on the floor and start from their head and move slowly down to their feet, doing each part of the body separately. Tense, then release.
- Deep breathing-This one is just teaching them to breath deeply from their diaphram instead of from their chest and throat. Place hands on tummy. Breath in for 4 counts, then out for 4. As you breath in, your hands should move up, as your tummy inflates, then goes down as you breath out and the air is released. I have them do this with their eyes closed and imagine the stress and tension in their body is being released and forced out of their body as they are releasing the air.
- Visualization/Mind Vacation-This one I just have them visualize the place out in nature that they would go to feel the most relaxed and peaceful: the beach, a mountain lake, a quiet forest, etc. Picture it and that you are the only person there. Talk them through some sounds and wind and relaxation things. Then "walk them back to the classroom" by counting backwards from 10 to 1 describing getting up and leaving, walking down the path, walking in the school, walking down your hall, opening your classroom door, in the classroom now, and then slowly have them start to move around. Move legs, move arms, sit halfway up, turn on the lights. Talk to them about if they actually pictured themselves at their peaceful place? How did it make you feel? Do you think you could do it again on your own?
- Laughter! Play a fun song, tell some jokes, play the "HA" game where everyone lays on someones tummy and you start by doing one "HA" that bounces the head of the person on your tummy. They add on and do "Ha,Ha". Keep going til someone loses it and laughs uncontrollably. Then start again. Laughter is the best medicine. It helps relieve stress and keep you in a positive mood instead of negative.
I play "Eye of the Tiger" for the aerobics part, then quiet piano music for the other stress management techniques that I show them how to do. They lay on the floor for all except the 1st one.
Intended Learning Outcomes
Students will understand what stress is and how to deal with stressful situations in a positive way.
- BELL RINGER: Begin by telling students that you have decided to give them a project they have to work on that is half of their grade. They have to write up a 5 pg report and put together a 10 minute presentation with a poster illustrating what they have done. All of this is due in two weeks.
Not really going to happen, but watch kids reaction. Then discuss what happened when they found out it was really not going to happen.
- NOTES: Discuss stress. What is it, what kinds of stress are there, what stressors we have in our lives, how stress shows up in our bodies, why is it important to learn how to deal with stress in a positive way?
- ACTIVITY: Participate in different stress management techniques.
- Healthy diet and exercise
- Total body tense and release
- Deep breathing
- Visualization/Minda Vacation
- How do you aviod stressful situations?
- Plan ahead.
- Don't procrastinate.
- Keep things organized (use a planner/schedule)
- Realize you can only fit so much into one day!
- Don't get so involved with so many things that you don't have time to do anything really well, but miss many things.
- TIME MANAGEMENT: How do you fit everyting into your day? How can you be more organized?
I challenge them to use at least one of these techniques twice this next week and write a paragraph on what that did for them, or did it make any difference.