Curriculum PSHE - Lesson Plan - Raise a smile

16th July 2010 at 01:00
Secondary: Get pupils thinking about happiness and introduce them to ways of managing their emotional well-being in this upbeat session

What the lesson is about

It looks at happiness and how enriching activities and setting smart goals can help us feel happy. It is part of a mental health well-being project and was originally devised for a Year 10 group, although it could be adapted for all secondary age-groups.

Aims: pupils will:

- investigate ways in which we can increase our happiness;

- increase their knowledge of happiness;

- increase their communication about feelings and emotions.

Getting started

Divide the class into pairs. Ask pupils to nominate one in each pair to go first, then ask them each to talk in turn about whether they feel happy today and why.

Explain that one way people can increase their happiness is by only doing things that enrich their lives. Explain that the things we do every day can be split into three categories: those that enrich us, those that do not enrich us, and those that are neutral but necessary. Ask pupils to divide the activities they do every day into each category and list them under that heading on a worksheet.

Ask them to discuss with their partner how they can reduce the activities in the "Does not enrich" column and increase those in the "Does enrich" category. Then ask them to complete the same worksheet, but describing a perfect day, listing activities according to the three categories.

Taking it further

Explain that another way of achieving happiness is by setting, meeting and celebrating our goals. Explain that happy people set clear goals and have specific plans to ensure these goals become reality.

Explain that one way of setting clear goals is to follow the Smart plan - making sure the goals are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. Ask pupils to set goals, making sure they cover areas such as relationships, health and fitness.

Ask pupils to each come up with one goal they want to achieve in the medium term. Ask them to set out where they are now and what they have to do to reach that goal. Ask them think about obstacles that would stop them from reaching that goal, and potential solutions.

Explain that some people need extra help to learn how to be happy and can do "laughter yoga" or join a "happy club". Ask if it is possible to manufacture happiness, and whether that is a good way of doing it.

Where to find it

The lesson plan, plus worksheets, was uploaded by Looplou13 and can be found at



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