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Express a hope that children have remembered everything they learned from Zoe and Joey about feelings and actions in the previous session, as you have heard that Super Susie needs their help!
(This session could start in a very dramatic way if someone – maybe a receptionist, or teaching assistant – came in with a note or an urgent phone message from Susie, which prompts the intro above!)
Check that the children remember Susie – remind them that she had superpowers that meant she never had to do anything for herself, but then they disappeared.
Click to play film:
Super Susie Gets Angry – Part One.
For this “Time to Talk”, choose from the following facilitation options based on the age and stage of your class:
• Group discussion
• Hot seating (one person as Susie and everyone else makes suggestions to her)
• Role-play in pairs. If this option is chosen, it might be sensible to then showcase one pair, to make sure that all the learning points below have been covered and the class is in the same place.
Whichever style you chose, the following are the key learning points for children to generate:
• Susie is feeling angry. She could also be feeling upset, embarrassed etc.
• Feelings are totally normal – everyone gets them!
• But feelings and actions are two different things, so Susie has a choice about how to act.
• What her options might be going forward, positive and negative.
Click to play film:
Super Susie Gets Angry – Part Two.
Explain to children that sometimes we experience strong or extreme feelings. But we don’t want our feelings to make us act in ways that we would be sorry about afterwards, so we should have some simple ideas to help us. Ask children to talk in pairs and feedback, e.g:
• Count to 10
• Take a deep breath
• Walk away
• Have a THINK moment before you speak
• Talk to a teacher/someone you trust
Susie tried to do that, by asking us to help her. But she still got carried away and learned that actions have consequences. This means that what we decide to do, like saying an unkind word, may have results that we might not be happy about later.
• Identify the consequences for Susie.
• If Susie had acted differently, what would the different consequences be?
Explain that we ALL make mistakes. But has Susie lost her friends forever? No. What could she do? Ask children to talk in pairs and feedback, e.g:
• Say Sorry
• Explain why she was upset, but that she shouldn’t have acted the way she did.
• Ask them to forgive her. Discuss what forgiveness means – not holding it against them. Explain that it may seem unfair to just let someone off without making them ‘pay’ for what they did. That is why it takes a special kind of love, like the love of God, to forgive.
Click to play film:
Super Susie Gets Angry – Part Three.
Give out the worksheet ‘Appendix 1: Feelings, Actions and Consequences’. Before children complete the exercise independently (or in small groups or pairs if preferred), take children through a few examples that they can write on to their sheets and refer back to:
To start, use an example from Susie’s story, eg:
Upset that she’d broken Alex’s glasses and hurt Fatima and her teacher;
Embarrassed that she lost her temper.
Worried that Alex and Fatima wouldn’t be friends with her any more.
Susie said sorry to the people she’d hurt and asked for forgiveness.
Alex and Fatima said sorry too, they all forgave each other.
They can keep being friends!
Then use a child-specific example, eg:
Sad because you didn’t do very well in a spelling test.
Annoyed with a friend who did better than you and keeps talking about it.
Tell your friend you were upset about your results in the test.
Ask them or a family member to help you practice!
Your friend might say sorry for going on about their good score.
You will do better on your next test if you practice!
Ask children to complete the rest of the sheet on their own or in groups, coming up with their own feelings, actions and consequences. To help children into this, a scenario suggestion from the class could be used as a starting point, e.g. Someone has called your friend a horrible name.
MOB to check: There is an option to play music in the background to encourage individually reflective work.
Explain that despite our best efforts everyone makes mistakes, and we need to be able to work through difficulties by forgiving each other. Remind children that Super Susie said, “Forgiveness is not a feeling; it’s a decision, a choice you have to make.”
Tell children that we can forgive others because God forgives us! Use the following notes to illustrate God’s forgiveness:
• Invite two volunteers up to the front, and pin or stick to their tops one label saying ‘God’ and the other saying ‘Us’ (from Appendix 2: Character Labels).
• Explain that in the beginning God and humans were friends and walked in the Garden of Eden together. Direct the children representing ‘God’ and ‘Us’ to hold hands.
• But pretty soon humans chose sin, they chose to do what was wrong and this separated them from God. Invite a child to the front, stand between ‘God’ and ‘Us’ holding a ‘Sin’ label.
• Explain that everytime we sin, (e.g. lie, cheat, steal), our sin pushes us further away from God. Invite a couple more children to the front, to stand holding a ‘Sin’ label between ‘God’ and ‘Us’, forcing the ‘Us’ child to step away.
• Invite a child to stand in front of the ‘Sins’ and stretch their arms out as if on a cross. Pin or stick the ‘Jesus’ label to their clothing.
• Explain that in dying on the cross, Jesus took our sins (instruct child to collect the handheld ‘Sin’ labels and ask the children who had been holding them to sit down) and Jesus dealt with them once and for all (‘Jesus’ tears up the sin labels).
• Ask the child representing ‘Jesus’ to hold hands with ‘God’ and ‘Us’.
• NB: The child representing ‘God’ should not move at all, to represent that God never walks away from us, it is we who turn from Him.
• Thank the volunteers and ask them to sit down.
Reiterate that children can ask God for forgiveness when they do the wrong thing, and God helps us to forgive others too!
Extension. Explain that we have a special sacrament in church for asking God’s forgiveness. It is called the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Some of the children in Key Stage 2 have made this sacrament. They go to see a priest and tell him what they have done wrong. The priest stands in the place of Jesus and forgives them. We often feel happy and joyful after this!
Extension. Allow for a quiet time of meditation where children consider anything they would like to say sorry to God for.