Week 35

Happiness

"To feel good about who you are and what you do."

Expanded Definition

Happiness is a feeling of internal satisfaction that brings meaning, fulfillment, and motivation in life. While there are many ways to evoke happiness, achieving a long-lasting one comes from contentment and a positive self-concept. Essentially, happiness signifies inner joy or a positive experience or outlook in life.

Etymology

Happiness is a compound of the adjective “happy” and the nominative suffix “-ness.” The adjective comes from the Old Norse happ, “luck, chance.”

Classroom Strategies

Happiness is more than just a feeling; it also serves as a source of power —a positive force— that energizes and moves a person to act positively. Above that, happiness revitalizes a person's health and improves their emotional well-being. Empower your students with happiness and, together, spread positivity using these classroom strategies:

  1. Teach how to instill a positive self-concept: Engage students in conversations about self-worth and positivity. Then, encourage affirmations and self-acceptance. By fostering a positive self-image, you're planting seeds of happiness that grow with each acknowledgment of personal value.

  2. Create a happiness collage: Have students compile a collage of images and words that represent joy. This visual reminder of positive moments cultivates a mindset focused on happiness, reminding them of the good times.

  3. Write in a gratitude journal: Encourage daily reflections on things students are thankful for. Gratitude breeds happiness, and by putting pen to paper, students develop an appreciation for the little things that bring joy.

  4. Facilitate sharing of happy memories: Encourage students to present souvenirs or share stories of joyous moments. Sharing these experiences reminds them of happier times and can potentially spread happiness among peers.

  5. Discuss the role of positive behavior in happiness: Show the connection between kind acts and happiness. Emphasize how simple gestures of kindness contribute to personal joy.

  6. Conduct laughter yoga: Engage in playful activities that induce laughter. Laughter releases endorphins and reduces stress, instantly boosting happiness. It's contagious and spreads joy throughout the classroom.

  7. Explain the connection between happiness and health: Help students understand that happiness impacts overall well-being. A happy mind contributes to a healthy body, promoting resilience and better coping skills.

  8. Include dance breaks in class: Incorporate short dance breaks to upbeat music. Movement and music are powerful mood lifters, instantly injecting positivity and joy into the classroom atmosphere.

  9. List self-care strategies: Teach students the importance of self-care. Show them that taking personal space and time to recharge is vital for happiness. When they care for themselves, they're better equipped to spread joy to others.

  10. Start the day with positive news: Begin each day by sharing or discussing positive news stories. Focusing on uplifting events sets a positive tone for the day, inspiring a happier outlook.

Happiness isn't just a pleasant feeling; it's linked to better health and improved learning. So, dive in, apply these strategies, and watch joy radiate throughout your classroom!

Resources

Game
Maslow Pyramid

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