This video has had over 4 million views on You Tube. The construction of the video, so that it has an impact, is worth paying attention to. This man is a teacher. He knows how to take a piece of information and plant it right into another human being so that it grows. He has very good social management skills which is why the video has had so many views. The message addresses the criteria/ indicators for self-awareness but by the end of the video he is addressing the criteria for self- management. We have to take a positive view of ourselves and push through on it so we become confident, resilient and adaptable.
This song Happy by Pharrell Williams has had over 205 million views. There must be something in it that everyone loves. It deals with the self-awareness, self- management aspect of the Personal and Social Capabilities. It is about recognising your emotions, recognising your personal qualities, expressing your emotions appropriately and becoming confident and resilient. 205 million people can’t be wrong. The lyrics are here.
This article on the Huffington Post blog about Why Generation y Yuppies are Unhappy gives plenty of food for thought and plenty of ideas about how to manage the frustration of Gen Y people. Those younger have also been brought up as special and have an even stronger idea about how to project themselves through social media and in a visual world and it is the negative side of that we often hear about in the news. This article gives us some insight as how we can better manage it and the Australian Curriculum gives us the perfect tool with its Personal and Social Capability. That is all about getting students to keep their feet on the ground and to look at how they impact on others and how others impact on them. It also addresses effective communication for dealing with issues and problems. Tools to manage your life positively. I have seen it at work in the year 8s I have explained this to this year. I have been more than impressed with how the work we have done has translated in effective , sensible action on their part to resolve issues and problems because they have the thinking and practical tools. This unicorn on the green grass with flowers is a wonderful image. It shows simultaneously the stuff of creativity and inspiration and then the pitfalls of not being grounded. The social awareness and social management aspects of this PASC are an opportunity to help students make realistic decisions and take realistic action without dampening their need to dream and dream big .
Forty years in the classroom shows. Rita Pierson can speak with such clarity, such honesty, such confidence and such knowledge. She is a jewel. Her talk is all inspiration because 40 years in a classroom has made her capable of understanding and knowing that it all comes down to relationships and connections. It is the stuff of the personal and social capability. Students will enable themselves when they have a champion. They will do better, try better and achieve more when they have someone who knows how to get the best out of them. The personal and social capability is about this: communication, developing leadership skills, understanding relationships, becoming confident and resilient, recognising personal qualities and achievements. Rita Pierson’s words can ring out and resound because she has spent 40 years in a classroom and she knows what she is talking about. As she speaks she is connecting with her audience and teaching them too about personal and social capability. We are educators. We can do this.
My students had overwhelmingly responded that working on their health and fitness would improve their personal capabilities. It was a clear message which came through. We should all be working on our fitness! The University of Bristol has done some studies on working on fitness and the Daily Telegraph reported the following:
The key findings were:
Seventy two per cent reported improvements in time management on exercise days compared to non-exercise days.
Seventy nine per cent said mental and interpersonal performance was better on days they exercised.
Seventy four per cent said they managed their workload better.
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Bob Doyle on the selfgrowth blog has 10 really good reasons for encouraging fitness at work. It is about energy, enthusiasm, being there and not just doing your job. Healthy people are more productive and are happier. Fitness Australia also looks at workplace health and fitness.
Schools are well placed to create happy, healthy environments since they already know how to manage and create teams and teachers are familiar with team building approaches. It is not just that, though. When my year 8s were responding to the indicators for the personal capabilities they were looking at taking responsibility for their own health and welfare. They were looking at how they could improve their eating habits and how they could improve their fitness. That’s a message we could build in schools which could be carried over into adult work environments so that the workplace could then help create workers who thrive.
This song came to mind because on the year 8 self-management review they just kept writing Be Calm as one of their actions to change blocking behaviours. I wondered, when I thought of the song, whether they knew it too or whether they felt a need to be calm, or whether it was something the adults around them had said to them a lot as they were growing up. It meant something to them and so is obviously an expression we need to use when we talk about self-management in schools. We need to ask them to be calm and to maybe help them to be calm. Worth investigating, but in the meantime, enjoy the song.
Three out of four ain’t bad! Dan Gilbert’s talk on happiness covers three of the four elements for the Personal and Social Capability: self-awareness, self-management and social management. His 20 minute talk which you can find on TED as well under the What makes us happy? playlist is both information packed and thought-provoking. He is an engaging speaker and so it is not difficult to absorb what he has to say . Dan Gilbert is the Professor of Psychology at Harvard and so what he has to say offers plenty of examples of experiments, physiological information about the brain and then the highlights well the problems we have in synthesising happiness and how our belief that choice is the answer – is not the answer at all. That we do not understand happiness very well is made clear and so all of what he offers in this talk has classroom implications for teachers and how they manage their students. It will also influence the tasks we design for the Personal and Social Capability. Well worth the listen and what ought to bring some good exchanges of ideas afterwards.