The I AM Program

Bringing Emotional Intelligence Education To Your Community for a Bright and Sustainable Future

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I AM TRUSTING MYSELF!

Posted by Arna on January 5, 2012 at 3:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Six wonderful young women aged between 7 and 12 attended the I AM Trusting Myself workshop yesterday!

See Gallery for pics!

The workshop Goal: Using artistic ‘colour’ focused activities and discussion to establish a link between our thoughts and our emotions.

Intelligences addressed: kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal/intuitive, visual/spatial

Values- connection, trust, communication, confidence, self-awareness, self-esteem, creativity

To trust the self is essential for a successful and happy life.

Trusting the self comes naturally when we know ourselves well. The first step to positive self-awareness is the ability to register and acknowledge our feelings. When we know the difference between the emotions we are actually having and another’s emotional projection we can deliberately respond from a place of confidence rather than confusion. Making the connection between our thoughts and the emotions they generate brings the emphasis back onto ourselves making life easier to negotiate. For example, if we are blaming another for our feelings and we want to fix it by changing the other we will likely be disappointed. However if we realise that WE are feeling the emotion and so therefore it is OURS, happening in our body, then we are in effect taking responsibility for our feelings. This is a powerful attitude to take, as once we acknowledge our personal responsibility and own our emotional world, we can then explore it, find the solutions and make the necessary changes to improve our experience of life. The I AM Trusting myself takes an introductory look at the though/emotion connection through the use of colour and artistic activities that enhance our intra personal awareness. To trust the self with confidence helps us to say NO when we need to and YES when it is right for us to do so. Trusting the self makes successful and joyful opportunities clearer to us and guides us to avoid those people and situations that make life less than optimal!

We painted our emotions, made jewellry in colours that reflected our JOY!

We played trust and communication games and developed our emotional intelligence together!

it is such a wonderful and easy thing to do with children, to give the opportunity for positive self-expression. 

Once again i learned a lot and look forward to our next emotional intelligence workshop!

Emotional Intelligence Education in The Classroom- Essential!

Posted by Arna on August 31, 2011 at 8:55 PM Comments comments (1)

Emotional Intelligence Education in the classroom in order to create a sustainable and AWESOME future for all.

I am an enthusiastic advocate for childhood empowerment. I cannot stress enough how important I believe it to be!

It stands to reason that if we embody personal power, self-love, empathy and other positive values and then teach them in the classroom regularly (daily ultimately) we will produce a generation of solution orientated, empowered and empathetic people.

Within that generaton will be the natural leaders that will guide us into a decidedly more peaceful existence.

A brief rundown of what I do in the classroom and the effect an emotional intelligence workshop can have as follows;

In the I AM Program workshop; ‘I AM, You Are, One World’ we discussed differences.

Why do we use racism to bully others? Why are our differences a point of conversation?

The children had many ideas and all very valid, the one that stood out most was a statement from a beautiful nine year old.

‘I think we are mean about other people because we are scared they will think our culture is stupid.’

This was so perceptive I nearly fell off my seat. This child had opened up the discussion from an angle that I (who is constantly philosophising) hadn’t considered! I had thought that we are quite likely scared and defensive when it comes to different ideas or unusual appearances BUT I hadn’t considered exactly WHY that may be.

I think this young man hit the nail on the head.

It isn’t so much that we don’t like another’s culture it is more like we immediately put our defenses up because we feel they may want to CHANGE US. Possibly on some level we know that we NEED to change and that’s uncomfortable so we go into a kind of lockdown around people that may have different opinions, closing off our hearts and minds.

When we are closed we are capable of all sorts of horrendous behaviour, verbal, emotional and physical. Remaining open and potentially vulnerable in the face of differences gives us the opportunity to make alliances and above all learn and evolve!

All good food for thought.

Another AWESOME thing about the workshop yesterday is that it was revealed to me once again, in no uncertain terms, that emotional intelligence education in the classroom WORKS.

WE were having a brainstorm- the question was- “Just say this classroom was your country and you were the leader of the country what would you say to your people to encourage peace?’

I didn’t suggest anything I simply wrote their statements on the board. ‘BE KIND TO EACH OTHER’ ‘LOVE EACH OTHER’ ‘LOVE YOURSELVES’ ‘TAKE CARE OF YOURSELVES’ ‘DRINK MORE WATER!’ ‘EAT HEALTHY FOOD’ ‘LETS TALK ABOUT IT’ ‘ASK THEM HOW THEY FEEL’ And so on. I was SO impressed.

What impressed me most was that 10 weeks ago when I started this course with this particular group of children, we had a similar brainstorm and the answers were hesitant and different .

More along the lines of ‘tell the people to be peaceful’ ‘Make them stop war’ ‘don’t give them guns’ etc. Not bad answers but less emotionally intelligent and fundamentally less effective solutions!

I realise that as I leave this group to bring my concept of emotional intelligence for a brighter more sustainable future to another group of children, these kids may forget a lot of what we learned. The hope is that some of it will stick and be re-gurgitated at a later date either as part of their personal journey or as an aspect of their own parenting etc.

I see clearly that if emotional intelligence education can have this great effect in 20 weeks of lessons once a fortnight then imagine how powerful it could be to have it in the classroom on a daily basis….

Peace in the classroom = Peace in the playground= peace on the streets= Peace in OUR World

We WILL move mountains if we empower children NOW.

What The Kids Have To Say!

Posted by Arna on July 4, 2011 at 10:23 PM Comments comments (0)

The children of 4/5/6 at Stokers Siding School had much to say about their I AM experience! I am extraordinarily grateful to have been a part of the last 12 weeks with them I learned a LOT! Let us hear them speak!

Tahnaya 11 said " The world would be a better place if all kids could learn these lessons"

Jiear 10 said "I learned I could make choices about my life"

Max 9 said "I loved making emotions out of clay!"

Andy 12 said "I learned that we would be able to do what we need to do without pressure. I love that our brain can hold 30 million years of information!"

Janayah 11 said "It was really fun and exciting, I have learned to understand about how other people feel when they are sad and that makes me want to be nicer to them"

Janardin 10 said "The world would be a better place if we knew about our emotions"

Megan 11 said "I have learned great things. So much about myself"

Kahani 9 said I" I think the world would be safer, funner and better if all kids had good self-esteem"

Marcus 10 said "I liked it when we meditated. I learned how to give myself a better life!"

Ebony 11 said "I liked doing the hands on program, I think I AM should go to more schools and teach kids to love themselves!"

Harlan 9 said 'We could have a peaceful world if kids grew up liking themselves more"

Rhys 10 said " I AM Awesome!

Ciara 11 said " I learned how to love myself and other people more than ever! We would have less war if there was more self-esteem."

Tazmin 9 said " now I am nore creative about the world."

Daisy 11 said I really liked being told that I AM AWESOME! I learned that everyone should have a say and that everyone is awesome!"

Jake 12 said "I liked talking about important things, it is best to learn these things when you are younger."

Chloe 10 said " This helps me use my imagination to be happier. I loved talking about unity and creating the world with all the people on it!"

This is ONE classroom at ONE hour a week for twelve weeks!

Imagine if we spent half an hour every day in every classroom how the world might change in the coming years!

WOW

Let us all do what we can to encourage schools to provide a few minutes each day in the classroom to ensure that every child has the OPTION for creating an awesome future!

Support us in making this happen by popping over to I AM For Kids on Facebook and giving us a LIKE!

Thanks!

I AM, You are, ONE World Workshop

Posted by Arna on June 21, 2011 at 10:44 PM Comments comments (0)

In the I AM Program workshop, 'I AM, You Are, One World' we discussed differences. Why do we use racism to bully others?

Why are our differences a point of conversation? The children had many ideas and all very valid, the one that stood out most was a statement from a beautiful nine year old. 'I think we are mean about other people because we are scared they will think our culture is stupid.'

This was so perceptive I nearly fell off my seat. Thie child had opened up the discussion from an angle that I (who is constantly philosophising) hadn't considered!

I had thought that we are quite likely scared and defensive when it comes to different ideas or unusual appearances BUT I hadn't considered exactly WHY that may be.

I think this young man hit the nail on the head.

It isn't so much that we don't like another's culture it is more like we immediately put our defenses up because we feel they may want to CHANGE US. Possibly on some level we know that we NEED to change and that's uncomfortable so we go into a kind of lockdown around people that may have different opinions. Closing off our hearts and minds. When we are closed we are capable of all sorts of horrendous behaviour, verbal and physical. Remaining open and potentially vulnerable in the face of differences gives us the opportunity to make alliances and above all learn and evolve!

All good food for thought.

Another AWESOME thing about the workshop yesterday is that it was revealed to me once again, in no uncertain terms, that emotional intelligence education in the classroom WORKS.

WE were having a brainstorm- the question was- "Just say this classroom was your country and you were the leader of the country what would you say to your people to encourage peace?'

I didn't suggest anything I simply wrote their statements on the board. 'BE KIND TO EACH OTHER' 'LOVE EACH OTHER' 'LOVE YOURSELVES'

'TAKE CARE OF YOURSELVES' 'DRINK MORE WATER!' 'EAT HEALTHY FOOD' 'LETS TALK ABOUT IT' 'ASK THEM HOW THEY FEEL'

And so on. I was SO impressed. What impressed me most was that 10 weeks ago when I started this course with this particular group of children we had  a similar brainstorm and the answers were hesitant and different . More along the lines of 'tell the people to be peaceful' 'Make them stop war' 'don't give them guns' etc. Not bad answers but less emotionally intelligent and fundamentally less effective solutions!

I realise that as I leave this group to bring my concept of emotional intelligence for a brighter more sustainable future to another group of children. These kids may forget a lot of what we learned. The hope is that some of it will stick and be re-gurgitated at a later date either as part of their personal journey or as an aspect of their own parenting etc. 

I see clearly that if emotional intelligence education can have this great effect in 20 weeks of lessons once a fortnight then imagine how powerful it could be to have it in the classroom on a daily basis....

We WILL move mountains if we empower children NOW.

 

Children, Words, Emotional Connection and Mind Power

Posted by Arna on June 2, 2011 at 12:23 AM Comments comments (0)

The last class I held was an extremely educational one for me.

We spent the majority of the time we had together discussing WORDS, more precisely the emotion IN words. The children and I were able to determine that words carry a particular emotion or 'vibe'.

We played around with words, felt them, threw them at each other and monitored the sensations in our body when we were hit with a word. In fact it was an awesome session.

We enjoyed some breathing and a short visualisation in which we allowed ourselves to feel the word happiness in our body. I instructed the children to notice if a symbol for this feeling popped up before their closed eyes.

WOWEE! we had triangles with tree's in them, vibrant vortexes, infinity signs and feathers etc

It seems to me that children are extremely receptive to unlocking the power of the mind, it helps them gain some kind of command over their inner world which in turn gives them peace in the busy world around them.

The more education of this kind we can fit into the classroom the better!

I am so happy to be on this ride with such an awesome bunch of future leaders!

Parents and Educators are being asked to step into a new role for the current generation. These kids are highly attuned to the world, through social media and through the general nature of evolution. 

We need to grow in consciousness and in emotional intelligence to be able to interact effectively. 

More than ever we are required to begin or continue our own personal development programs, broaden our perspectives and open our hearts.

For those who are into exploring personal growth emotionally, spiritually and psychologically please visit my blogs at I AM Spirituality and Peace in The Playground

 

The Many Faces of Happy

Posted by Arna on May 15, 2011 at 4:17 AM Comments comments (0)

The last two weeks have been enlightening!

I have had an incredible time exploring feelings using clay with yrs 4/5/6 of Stokers Siding Public school.

The children spent one lesson creating a magnificent landscape, an environment of extraordinary proportions, a kaleidoscope of colour and excitement!

We enjoyed in depth discussion on the topic of emotions and how they appear to the individual, we familiarised ourselves with the concept of meeting our feelings through visualisation and let me tell you HAPPY never had so many faces!

Happy is a yellow triangle, a serene Chinese lady with a straw hat, a smiling chocolate bar happy was seen in 26 forms and felt in 26 ways!

The point of this exercise was to understand the importance of SELF-awareness. When we know what happy feels like we are more likely to recognise and follow that feeling. When we recognise what NO feels like to us, we are able to respond appropriately when that is the message our emotions are giving us.

Visualisation is a simple and powerfully effective way to engage children’s curiosity about their emotional world.

A small amount of time, dedicated to this on a daily basis enhances emotional intelligence and contributes to a pleasant classroom environment, conducive to learning.

Our next project was to re-create our feelings with clay and recycled objects, WOW stay tuned for the photos!

For anyone familiar with Neuro-Lingustic Programming (NLP), it will be clear that a tactile exercise like sculpture will benefit all children but speak to some more than others.

NLP is a model of ‘the structure of human subjective experience.’ It is how people think and experience the external world internally.

People think differently and these differences correspond to the three principle senses- Vision, Hearing and Feeling. We experience the world through these three representational systems, but we are inclined to use one more than the other, either naturally or by circumstance (such as Blindness).

The feeling or’ kinaesthetic’ representational system is a touch system. People that are highly kinaesthetic will be stimulated by a hands on exercise like the ‘Feeling Sculpture’ workshop.

Most children will enjoy sculpture for many reasons...getting dirty, being creative but some brains will switch on to a higher degree than during a lesson with a purely linguistic or visual approach. They will become inspired to learn and be more receptive to information.

Forever wonderful, the children of Stokers take my love for humanity to a deep level, inspiring me to continue to bring the world of emotional intelligence to its proper place of importance in the classrooms of the world!

Positivity Spotting Workshop

Posted by Arna on May 4, 2011 at 9:42 PM Comments comments (0)

We had a brilliant time at a small holiday workshop 'Positivity Spotting'.

Five girls spent two creative hours together discussing, through words and art, the creation of a positive and successful life!

From the way out to the definitely possible, between us we realised that yesterday's dream is today's reality.

Therefore to have an amazing vision of the future helps to bring an amazing future into reality!

It isn't hard to inspire and motivate children, as educators ALL we need to do is OPEN UP, LOVE our students and provide numerous opportunity for self-expression.

 If we listen to our future leaders in the classroom they will feel inspired to continue imagining and expressing. Thus bringing into being the most positive vision possible- Social Harmony.

Self-Esteem Flourishing at Stokers Primary School

Posted by Arna on April 6, 2011 at 6:56 PM Comments comments (0)

The end of term has arrived and with it a wonderful feeling of fullfilment and success!

I have enjoyed spending the days with the children of 4/5/6 I have learned so much that has opened my mind, eyes and heart. What more is there than a continuous betterment of body, mind and spirit.

Life is an experience, we can say this confidently; an experience speckled with concepts, opinions,opportunities and change.

My experience experimenting with the concept of emotional intelligence and brain development has been a brilliant one so far.

I can see that the children of the world have what it takes to bring us into the next evolutionary phase of global maturity.

A time where war is less compelling than peaceful solutions where personal excellence is a far more interesting concept than worldly excess and competition.

At school we have been creating  examples of these WORLDS!

Environments where positive action takes place, where connection to each other makes all the difference.

We have created a booklet that exposes emotions for what they are TEMPORARY, able to change at any moment. We know that we don't need to be afraid of our feelings we will never be stuck in a bad day. All it takes is a change of focus and we know how to do that.

YES life is good, sad things and bad things can happen, but we ALWAYS remember that life is good, because remembering that gives us the power to create a new moment. 

When asked the question 'what does community mean to you?' the answers are resoundingly similar. TOGETHERNESS, HAPPY FAMILIES, LOOKING AFTER EACH OTHER.

These answers show a maturity that will benefit us all in the future as these children take their place as leaders of our world.

Looking forward to the rest of the year, what treasures we have before us!

I AM explores CONNECTION in the Community Collage Workshop!

Posted by Arna on March 22, 2011 at 6:59 PM Comments comments (0)

When I began the process of researching, writing and experiencing the I AM Program I had no idea that it would be SO rewarding.

Since bringing it to the classrooms I have been surprised and uplifted to such a degree as to have almost acquired a brand new attitude!

I have always known that children are amazing and when given the opportunity could teach so much through their innocence and  unsophisticated approach to life. The surprising thing for me is the KNOWLEDGE that these people already posess.

The intelligence of children is astounding but it can be obscured by our adult expectations. We can forget to listen and to engage. We can be under the spell of 'Adults know better' or 'Toleration of childishness'.

Once I pushed aside my expectations of exactly how much I thought children were capable of I was knocked for six by the depth of their minds, their amazing philosophy's and explanations for things!

We have been discussing the logistics of 'Oneness'. We clearly and joyfully discovered, through a discussion on communities from the microcosmic to the macrocosmic and how we as individuals might affect our communities that; We are like ONE being....we talked of the atomic level of humanity- we are all MOVING! and at the atomic level we all look EXACTLY the same WOWEEE!

Discovering connections has been such a fulfilling couple of weeks, interspersed with emotional exploration and the realisation that we are the captains of our 'emotional body ship'. Dotted with the growth of our emotional intelligences; the community collage brought attention to the naturalistic intelligence as we took a field trip into the great outdoors, collecting bits and pieces for our COLLAGE.

We created our own environment collages and discussed how we might affect our environment in positive ways- we realised that a simple smile can have an affect on our world.

A SMILE may make someone feel so happy that they choose to have a positive day rather than a negative one going on to further affect others and making positivity grow!! 

We discovered that when you feel positive you are more likely to act in positive ways!

so making a better community may be as simple as finding healthy ways to make YOURSELF happy!

Wonderful Children Enhance The I AM Program

Posted by Arna on March 8, 2011 at 10:51 PM Comments comments (0)

What a Beautiful day we had yesterday getting to know our emotional body EVEN better!

I AM AWESOME the children squealed! because they are!!!

We began to create our emotion book for the classroom. By each choosing 3 emotions that we felt like exploring we made pages that would come together to make the most amazing feelings booklet EVER!

We explored CONFIDENCE.......

 

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We explored LOVE and to challenge the teacher one CONFIDENT child explored the feeling of BOREDOM! what does Bored feel like, look like, sound like. AHA! by using our powerful imagination we turned off the bored switch and chose to turn on the FUN switch! 

We discussed ways to acknowledge the feelings that come up for us and ways to turn our attention to feelings that would prefer to have thus becoming the BOSS of our emotions.

Isn't it COOL to be the BOSS of something! 

Next week we will compile our book and create a cover page...but that's not ALL.......

until then remember to tell yourself every day..'I AM EXCELLENT'


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