Enhancing relationships: Making choices

Tagged with:

  • Attitudes and values
  • Mental health
  • Relationships With Other People
  • Healthy Communities and Environments
  • Hauora
  • Health promotion
  • Years 5–8
  • Years 9–10

Making choices prompts ākonga to examine the choices, consequences, beliefs, and values that are involved in making decisions, and gives them the opportunity to use dramatic inquiry to learn how to demonstrate assertiveness when making choices.

Two teenage students discussing over laptop screens

Understanding ourselves and getting on together — Activity collection

This resource is part of the Understanding ourselves and getting on together collection.

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Possible learning activities

Present ākonga with a situation where they are required to make a decision in the face of peer pressure. For example, you have been given money to pay for a school trip, but on your way to school your friends suggest that you buy lollies instead, or a friend asks you to hide a cell phone in your bag that you know has been stolen.

  • Divide ākonga into two groups. One group writes down the reasons why you should buy the lollies or hide the cell phone, and the other group writes down the reasons why you should not.
  • One ākonga volunteers to sit between the two groups to role-play the person who has to make the decision. The groups take turns to give their reasons. 
  • When each group has presented all their reasons, the person in the middle says what their decision will be.
  • Ask each volunteer why they made that decision and how easy it was to do so.
  • Discuss effective ways to let others know that you have made your own decision, for example, using 'I' statements.
  • Ākonga could brainstorm several situations in which similar conflicts may occur. They each choose two or three, complete a chart, and share these in small groups.

For an extension activity that gives ākonga the chance to practice making 'I' statements, ākonga will need to draw up a chart with the following headings for each column:

  • Issue
  • Possible choices
  • Possible consequences
  • Attitudes and values that are important to me in making my decision
  • Decision made

A further consideration for ākonga is 'How will you let others know what your decision is? What will you say, and how will you say it?'.

Cultural and diversity considerations

All ākonga are part of wider whānau, hapū, iwi, and other community groups. Culturally capable kaiako and tumuaki know, value and integrate the cultural capital of their ākonga into the work of creating positive classroom communities. Classroom programmes dealing with mental health should be sensitively developed so that they respect and reflect the diverse values and beliefs of ākonga and the whole school community.

Kaiako of Pacific ākonga should consider what assertiveness looks like for the Pacific peoples represented in their classrooms, and may need to engage with whānau to deepen their understanding here. More guidance for dialogue with Pacific whānau can be found on Engaging with parents, families and communities, which is part of Tapasā on TKI.

Kaiako notes

Focus inquiry questions around the learning outcomes before and after the activities to support ākonga to reflect and think critically about the activities.