The world can be a scary place for children—and sometimes, it is difficult for adults. From the pandemic to natural disasters, poverty, and food insecurity, students are bringing a lot of big emotions to school with them. Layered on top of these ongoing current events is the news of conflicts around the world.
As of March 2022, there are several ongoing conflicts worldwide, including in Ukraine.
Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines "conflict" as a fight, battle, or war, or the competitive or opposing action of incompatibles: antagonistic state or action (as of divergent ideas, interests, or persons).
The Center for Preventive Action (CPA)'s Global Conflict Tracker highlights conflicts in Mexico, Venezuela, Nigeria, China, North Korea, Iran, and many more. The CPA estimates that globally there are 70.8 million people displaced by conflict. These global conflicts may have an emotional impact on students with families in these regions or who have family in the military.
If your students feel strong emotions due to issues at home, from the pandemic, or have family/friends in areas in conflict zones, they may need a little extra time to process their feelings.
Below are PATHS® lessons and resources to help students work through these challenging emotions.
First, assure students that all feelings are OK and provide opportunities to openly and honestly discuss their feelings. Help them manage their emotions appropriately and guide them to make good decisions in response to how they feel using emotions lessons in the PATHS® curriculum.
If questions come up, Today.com has a guide for talking to students depending on their age.
Review Emotions Lessons
You may want to review the following PATHS® lessons and resources with your students:
- Preschool/Kindergarten: Lessons 11 (Scared or Afraid), 35 (Worried)
- Grade 1: Lessons 17 (Scared or Afraid, Safe), 20 (Calm/Relaxed, Worried)
- Grade 2: Lessons 13 (Scared or Afraid, Safe), 16 (Calm/Relaxed, Worried)
- Grade 3: Lesson 12 (Calm/Relaxed, Tense)
- Grade 4: Lesson 9 (Calm/Relaxed, Tense)
- Grade 5: Lessons 4 (Ways to Calm Down), 5 (Calm/Relaxed, Tense), and 6 (Ways to Cope With Stress).
These resources focus on the range of feelings students may be feeling due to current events, situations at home, or conflicts with classmates.
Preschool/Kindergarten, Grades 1-2
For Older Students
- Lesson 3: Sad
- Lesson 5: Scared or Afraid
- Lesson 6: Mad or Angry
- Lesson 7: Worried
- Lesson 9: Disgusted
- Lesson 11: Disappointed