This lesson begins to teach about the importance of having a vocabulary for feelings.
Recognition of shared experiences
3 x 5 index cards (approximately 100)
Before the class begins, draw a "feeling continuum" on the chalkboard.
Angry - Upset - Sad - Calm - Indifferent - Bored - Happy - Excited
When the students come in, ask them, "How do you feel? How are you feeling today?" If they respond without detail (e.g., "fine"), discuss why that happens. Ask them why people greet one another with "how are you feeling?" and answer "fine" even when they are not fine?
Ask students to indicate how they feel right now (present feeling state) by putting initials under those feeling words on the board. Have them add any word that better describes their feelings.
Invite students to set a goal of how they would like to be feeling in 1 hour. Discuss how to get from the present feeling to the goal.
Ask discussion questions that focus on feelings.
1. "What did we just do?" (Become aware of feelings.)
2. "Are feelings easy or hard to talk about? What makes it hard to talk about them?"
3. "How do you know when you're feeling a feeling? Can you stop or change your feelings? Increase your feelings?"
4. "What are some lessons from today? Where else could you use them?"
Brainstorm feelings -- all the words the class can think of. Ask for volunteers to write the words on the board. Ask for other volunteers to write feeling words on 3 x 5 cards, one word to a card. Explain that for the next few lessons we will be collecting feeling words and making experiment cards.
Help the brainstorming by suggesting categories of feelings (i.e., good feelings, bad feelings, loving feelings, and neutral feelings). Teachers should add some complex words (e.g., embarrassed, content, indifferent).
Do not expect a long list at first. The list will grow with awareness and time.
in-between happy and sad