I am lucky to have partnered with Dove Self-Esteem Project and Discovery Education for this post about their new amazing, free resource. All opinions are my own.
I remember very vividly the first time I started feeling self-conscious about my body: I was 9, in the 4th grade, and “developing” (y’all, I hate that term). It was tough, and that was well before social media was sending all sorts of messages my way, too. That’s why I was pretty pumped to learn about Dove and Discovery Education’s newest initiative: Amazing Me body confidence resources. And as a boy mom, the fact that these resources are for all genders makes me pretty happy.
Multiple studies have shown that low self-esteem during adolescence can negatively affect academic performance, relationships with others, and self-perception. Fourth and fifth grade are the perfect grades to do some early intervention and begin building body positivity and critical thinking around media images. I have also noticed that this is when my students start to build and use social media profiles. It is sometimes tempting to wait until something becomes a problem before talking about it, especially if we are worried about making it a problem too soon. When it comes to body positivity and comparing ourselves to others though, I think positive prevention is 100% the route to go.
Here is the deal of what Amazing Me has to offer (totally for free):
1.Educator/Counselor Lessons (coming in the spring)
2.Body Confidence Virtual Field Trip
3. Family Resources
Virtual Field Trip
Let’s talk about this awesome virtual field trip – because I really think it’s such an easy but effective resource to use for class lessons or group counseling sessions. It is super fun because it includes both real kids and familiar animated characters from Cartoon Network’s Steven Universe to talk about body positivity. It’s not just about accepting and loving your own body, but also about respecting the appearances of others. The resource includes a discussion guide which includes quick activities for before, during, and after the field trip. There aren’t many quality videos that you can use with upper elementary kiddos in counseling or SEL lessons. This one is great, though! It is about twenty minutes long and very fast-paced. You can play/watch it straight through or pause to stop and discuss.
Here are some of the things it focuses on: ·How our insides are more important than our outsides ·How comparison is hurtful ·The amazing things our bodies can do ·Defining body image and body talk ·Not letting other peoples’ comments get us down
Click here for the virtual field trip!
The family resources are also helpful – for both families and counselors! Amazing Me includes ten short activities for families to do together. They can make for easy follow-ups for counselors (or teachers) to send home. I imagine them being included in newsletters or linked to in websites to provide families with tangible ways to extend the learning from the virtual field trip. Many could also totally be done with small groups at school. Super easy to use in lunch bunches!
Interested in how these resources tie in with standards?
•Collaborative for Academic and Social Emotional Learning: Self-Awareness, Social Awareness, and Relationship Skills
•American School Counseling Association: Belief in development of whole self, including a healthy balance of mental, social/emotional and physical well-being; Create positive and supportive relationships with other students
“Ready to go” resources are an educator’s best friend. The Amazing Me virtual field trip and family activities are easy to use. I believe they will genuinely ignite great conversations with our kiddos about body image and media comparison.
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