Connecting with others

This theme focusses on developing students’ skills in being able to access and ask for help and support.

Activities are designed to have students consider attitudes to seeking help and how to overcome barriers to talking about problems. There are sessions using Samaritans’ listening expertise, to help young people feel able to talk with their peers.

Theme outcomes

In this theme, students will:
  • Explore the importance of asking for support.
  • Explore ways young people can encourage their peers to access support in dealing with stress or challenging situations.
  • Recognise that talking to someone can often help young people decide what they would like to try, to enable them to deal with their problems in a positive way.
  • Understand their role in peer helping and the importance of encouraging others to access professional support.
  • Have increased knowledge about the range of support options available and how to make informed choices.
  • Recognise that it is ok and important to seek support if they are struggling to manage difficult emotions.
  • Develop the communication skills necessary when seeking appropriate help or listening to and supporting others.

Lesson Plans

Session

Length

Outcomes

Developing listening
skills

1 hour

  • To improve our listening skills.
  • To understand the elements of effective active listening.
  • To be able to use effective listening skills.

My support network

1 hour

  • To know that there are people who can help.
  • To consider who to talk to about different kinds of problems.
  • To recognise that no problem is too big or small to deal with.
  • To understand that support networks change over time.
  • To understand that support networks are different for different people.

Barriers to seeking help

1 hour

  • To be aware of help that is available.
  • To know how to access and accept that help when offered.
  • To be able to think through potential outcomes from different choices.
  • To make sensible choices about seeking and accepting help.
  • To challenge the stigma and/or anxiety associated with asking for help/accepting help.

Supporting a friend

1 hour

  • To consider the importance of encouraging friends to access support.
  • To understand our roles in peer helping.
  • To consider when to be concerned about a friend.
  • To be able to use some strategies to help a friend.

Developing listening skills: Barriers to listening

20 mins

  • To understand how active listening can help ourselves and others.
  • To be able to recognise our own internal dialogue.
  • To be able to develop active listening skills.

Listening – making assumptions

20 mins

  • To be able to develop effective listening skills.
  • To recognise how we make assumptions about what we have heard and how this affects our listening.

Developing listening skills: Open questions

20 mins

  • To understand what an open question is.
  • To understand how an open question aids listening.
  • To be able to ask questions relating to information given.
  • To recognise barriers to listening.
  • To understand what rehearsal means.

Talking helps: It’s hard
to say

20 mins

  • To understand that it can be difficult to tell someone about some problems.
  • To know who you can go to for support.
  • To understand how talking can help.

Who are Samaritans?

20 mins

  • Who Samaritans are.
  • How they can help.
  • How talking helps.
  • To be able to recognise that everyone needs support sometimes.

Barriers to asking
for help

20 mins

  • To consider stigma and anxiety in asking for help.
  • To make sensitive choices about seeking help.

Helping my friends

20 mins

  • To identify when friends need help.
  • To identify thoughts and feelings of someone who is feeling low.
  • To identify agencies that can help.

It’s good to talk: assessment activity

 

1 hour

  • To be aware of help that is available.
  • To know how to access and accept that help when offered.
  • To be able to think through potential outcomes of different choices.
  • To make sensible choices about seeking and accepting help.
  • To challenge the stigma or anxiety associated with asking for or accepting help.
  • To consider the importance of seeking help and the benefits and/or risks of asking for help.

 

All the free digital resources to complement the Connecting With Others sessions can be found here.