Friday, 8 March 2013

Celebrating Happiness

From the first day of school I have been attempting to instill in the students the understanding that their actions, (large, small, positive, negative), impact upon others. We discuss daily, different ways that we can create positive experiences for others as well as brand ourselves in a positive way.
By walking in others shoes, showing empathy or genuinely thinking of their impact on friends, family and strangers, my learners are becoming more aware of the role that they play in our learning community.
It has all been a bit of a hippy experience for us all, but I am confident that a classroom culture built on empathy and self awareness is one that fosters learning and achievement.

About 10 days ago the class watched this movie by SoulPancake. They loved the idea of building an "olden days TV" and finding Happy Stories from their school mates. They wanted to keep it simple, yet make an impact. Some students were keen to make a weekly series, whereas others wanted a one off major event of Happiness!

Today we began the journey of HappyTV.

We knew as a class that we didn't want our efforts to only be in the form of a movie. We wanted our school to benefit from our understandings of what it means to share happiness.

While working on our plan for HappyTV, we were sharing ideas around about the design of the TV and how we might attract kids to come and share their stories. Logan said that he wanted to do something nice, create a happy moment for the children willing to be involved. We discussed rewards, games etc... but eventually came up with the idea of a Happiness Flashmob. Take the Happiness to the kids. Share our joy and laughter with others and see what happens.

What an amazing morning - discussing our plan of attack, inflating balloons, decorating faces, finalising props and then....

The answers to our question "What made you happy this week?" were brilliant. In most cases the children had experienced simple events that had resonated so loudly with them. From sharing icecreams, visiting the pools to playing on the park.
My favourite story was of the young lad whose happiness came from an afternoon spent with his dad - I wonder if his dad realises the impression that afternoon left?

I hope we do this again ... a wee twist, something new...who knows?
But these kids have ideas and these kids have bucketloads of Happiness, love and empathy.  These kid are outstanding!

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