The C.E. Scoop

Digging deeper into social-emotional skills...

By: Marwa Abu-Wafia

Lobna Mohsen

Grade 2

Issue #2, Quarter 2, 2016/2017

Respect & Responsibility for Environment/ Habit 1: Be Proactive

Through research competition, games and songs, kids learned about the value of the natural resources, dangers "mother" Earth is facing, and what it means to "Go Green".

They discovered ways to take care of the Earth by making smart, responsible, respectful choices to Reuse, Reduce and Recycle. They learned about ways to do that and are encouraged to demonstrate such conscious actions.

They started a recycling project in their center with two big boxes they decorated themselves with tips of caring for the environment in which they now put their extra paper and plastics they don't need. This is taken to a recycling association to be reproduced.

We also integrated a planting activity in their field trip to apply what they learnt about its usefulness for the balance of the Earth and how it's counted among a person's good deeds.

G2 Going Green
GOING GREEN! (Earth Day song for kids about the 3 R's- Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle!
If You're a Kid... (Earth Day Remix!) [song for kids about going green] - YouTube

Respect for Animals

Students discovered the important dimension of respect- that is to value animal life through a heart-warming video about a blind boy helping a mother bird find her chick, and thus integrating special needs and perseverance as well. They differentiated between merciful attitude and non-caring attitude towards animals and some students made bird feeders as a way to practice respectful behavior towards animals, and how this too is counted in their good deeds.
Blind kid saves a bird...amazing video - YouTube

Responsibility and Community Building: We all play a part...

Each student was assigned a meaningful job to do in class, thus learning to be a proactive member in a community and contributing to its wellness. The jobs will rotate on the students so everyone gets to experience different tasks: time keeper, voice-level regulator, IT helper, electricity saver, social helper, smart choices reminder, recycler, plant keeper, game planner, clean-up officer... No matter how small a part can be, if done well, it can make a huge difference to everyone. This also emphasizes the value of cooperation and efficacy.
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Goal Setting

After returning from winter break, with a fresh start of the new year, it was time for some reflection and goal-setting. Children got to make a 2017 calendar craft which displayed: 2 happy things that happened to them and they're grateful for, one bad habit they want to stop (make it zero), one goal they want to achieve and seven ideas that would make CE class better!

Self-Awareness: Brain in the Palm of Your Hand

Our students got to explore what happens to their brains when they're experiencing intense emotions. Through a simplified version of the metaphor of "The Brain in the Palm of your Hands" by Dr. Daniel Siegel, they demonstrated how these emotions flips the thinking part (fingers) open, and feelings (mid palm) take over. Mirror neurons in the opposing persons catches on and flips the other's brain as well, thus leaving the two parties with no thinking and intense emotions in control...

Something has to be done then...

Students had a blast making a dough that symbolizes how soft feelings are that we need to take good care of, and use it as a stress ball to calm down to "unflip" the brain.

* Here's a useful link for more illustration: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_dxnYhdyuY

Self-Management

Self-regulation is an essential life skill that needs practice. Our children realized that calming oneself down is essential to think straight about a situation. They brainstormed ideas about calming down strategies through their own experiences. They're encouraged to use them whenever needed and they even remind each other of them!
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Respectful Communication of Feelings: I-Message

What is a message and an i-phone? I-message :D

Students had fun making their "i-phones" symbolizing and displaying the i-message; an effective way of respectful communication of feelings and one way of problem solving. It goes like: "I felt...... when......, and I wish ............."

Students were directed to use specific expressions of feelings rather than the general bad, sad one, and also give details about the situation that they didn't like them rather than generally saying bothered or bugged.

Also they're advised to say use the expression "when people do so and so" rather than saying the name or "you" especially when things are discussed in a meeting or in the presence of an audience, to avoid the other party getting defensive.

In the wishing part, students should try to use a positive demand rather than negating what bothered them or staying stop doing it.

So, an effective I-message should go like: "I felt hurt when you made fun of what I'm dressing, and I wish that you'd respect my choice of what I wear," rather than "I felt bad when you made fun of me, and I wish that you stop!"

Students also were instructed to listen without interruption and reply respectfully, by saying sorry, explaining what happened, promising not to do it again, asking how it can be fixed or even replying back with an I-message, too.

I Message Iphone Making

Problem-Solving: The Wheel of Choice

Through real-life stories, students came up with a variety of different solutions for everyday conflicts. They were also asked to listen to the situations in the following song and pick choices they think are helpful to them. Each class later made their Class' Wheel of Choice, and each one made his own to take it home. Now, they know it's their responsibility to own their conflicts and resolve it, and seek adult's help only when it's a big problem or when they weren't able to solve it.
Kelso
Wheel of Choice The Making

Tips

  • Go Green! Use ideas from the songs:
  1. Separate recyclable materials from your household wastes. Give them regularly to a recycling association near you; awareness is spreading and they've now become popular. Encourage your neighbors as well!
  2. Be creative: Reuse old things in useful applications.
  3. Reduce the consumption of water, paper, electricity... as much as possible.
  • Demonstrate kindness and care to animals whenever possible- help a needy or hurt animal, adopt a pet, support organizations or websites which care for endangered animals...
  • Be a model of a good citizen and your child will follow you: demonstrate your best at work, follow traffic rules, don't litter...
  • Self-regulation strategies need practice to be able to master the skill! Please model using them in front of your child and encourage to do the same! Never try to resolve a situation when your child's or your brain is "flipped."
  • Have a safe place at home where one can calm down. You can add tools to it like pencils and paper, coloring books, stress balls, CD player, books and a counter.
  • Express your feelings often and model using exact expressions and detailed situation, and what you wish to see in the future. "I feel ..... when ...., and I wish...."
  • Encourage friends and siblings to resolve their everyday conflicts, use and reply to the I-messages in a positive way.
  • Have regular family meetings when you can set goals together, make your own wheel of choices and make important decisions together as a family.

Stay and Plays!

We've started the second round of our Stay and Play this semester! In the theme of a mini-camp, students will have opportunities to experience real cooperation and teamwork challenges which they can overcome only when they cooperate and work as a team. After every challenge they receive a clue and in the end they assemble a masterpiece of their own. Reflective activities and a surprise awaits in the end of this unique experience.

You can't miss it!

Let's Meet Up!

The CE Department is organizing our special Parents-CE meeting to share common topics, feedback and suggestions. Stay tuned for the letter with all the details very soon insha'Allah!

Some Good Shots of the Character Parade

Grade 2 Character Parade

Hope you enjoyed! Looking forward to a successful third quarter insha'Allah...