Instilling Gratitude and Optimism Related Tags: Social and Emotional Learning,New Teachers More Related Discussions Susanna Foote , 7th grade Social Studies from Dallas, Texas Posted 04/27/2014 7:31PM | Last Commented 06/11/2014 7:01PM 2 Shares 7 700 Views I am looking for SEL resources and activities that assist with teaching middle schoolers about optimism and gratitude. Any suggestions? Sign in to vote! Sign in to Flag as Spam Share 7 Share Comments (7)Sign in or register to postSubscribe to comments via RSS Newest Related Discussions Posted 4/29/2014 2:51am Kevin JarrettK-4 Technology Facilitator from Northfield, New Jersey Facilitator Hi Susanna, this might be a stretch for middle school, but I have used this video successfully for years to discuss SEL at the elementary level - it's an adorable video of a mother and baby squirrel attempting to traverse a wall - they need some human help to do so - and it always generates a terrific, positive emotional response from the students: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1jByfWOLmjo Again, I'm not sure how it might play for middle schoolers but I wanted to share. Hope it helps, -kj- Sign in to vote! Posted 5/1/2014 8:25pm Charlene Pugh If you are looking for resources, check out 6seconds.org. They are the best when it comes to social emotional learning! Sign in to vote! Posted 5/1/2014 8:27pm Stacey Wow, the video is so inspiring specially looking on the journey in education. I enjoyed it. Sign in to vote! Posted 5/2/2014 10:11am Samer RabadiOnline Community Manager Staff We asked this question of our community on Facebook. Here are some of the responses: Heather M. Read The Positive Dog to your class. It's a fantastic book by Jon Gordon. Christine P. Try some stuff from Carol Dweck! Fixed mindset vs. growth mindset. Saminah K. First thing is the need to be optimistic yourself first. Catherine G. Yes, modelling the behaviour is so important. Use positive language and approaches and reinforce it when the students demonstrate it through praise and rewards. Brittany W. Yes! Through self talk and creating situations for students to look forward to. For more, the discussion can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/edutopia/photos/a.108957049916.91597.8229530491... Sign in to vote! Posted 5/3/2014 6:30am Carol McDDaughter of two teachers, mother of one student, A fun exercise that can be life changing...ask your students to purposefully smile all day long. Make it a game by catching them in class not smiling and smile hugely at them to remind them. You should also do the exercise while they are doing it just to observe your own reactions. Ask them to remind each other, nicely, to smile all day and they should carry out this exercise for the remainder of the day at home and during whatever activities they participate in after school. But they cannot tell anyone it's an assignment for class. Tell them to notice what kind of response they get from others. Assign them to write one paragraph before they go to bed describing how it made them feel and what response they received from others. Discuss their outcomes. Your students will have great stories to tell, will report they felt happier while they were smiling, and that others seemed to be happier around them. This will lead you into a discussion about optimism and how to maintain an optimistic attitude. Sign in to vote! Posted 5/3/2014 6:52am Kevin JarrettK-4 Technology Facilitator from Northfield, New Jersey Facilitator Love this! Clever! Thanks! Going to share with my colleagues! Sign in to vote! Posted 5/5/2014 5:57pm Amy Erin Borovoy (aka VideoAmy)Senior Manager of Video Programming, Production, & Curation at Edutopia Staff What a wonderful idea. I've got three Five-Minute Film Festival video playlists that might offer some good resources... Resources for Teaching About Characterhttp://www.edutopia.org/blog/film-festival-character-education 10 Videos About Generosity and Giving Backhttp://www.edutopia.org/blog/film-festival-generosity-lesson-ideas Videos on Kindness, Empathy, and Connectionhttp://www.edutopia.org/blog/film-festival-kindness-empathy-connection All three of these posts have great videos but also links to more related articles and lesson plans and organizations at the bottom. Good luck! 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