Developing confidence through PSHE

The Sky Academy recently completed a survey of 1600 young people, which found that 40% of girls and 33% of boys suffer from a lack of confidence. The poll suggested that many of these young people are finding that their "confidence is sapped by social media interactions”.

As a teacher with 11 years of teaching experience, this got me thinking. We have a responsibility to our young people to help them feel safe online and build their resilience to criticism. Teachers need to look at learning strategies that give young people the confidence to go out into the world and achieve truly great things.

As part of ASDAN’s ongoing commitment to providing relevant and up-to-date programmes, we are currently looking at our PSHE Short Course to ensure it continues to offer a curriculum that addresses issues such as this and meets the ever-changing needs of young people in the 21st century. Building the confidence of young people looks like being one of the key learning outcomes for the future of the PSHE curriculum.

The PSHE Short Course offers a nationally recognised curriculum, accreditation and certification opportunity. It features a wide range of PSHE-themed activities, as well as an ‘other agreed’ challenge option in each module, which can be written by the assessor to meet the specific needs of an individual or group of young people.

With the other agreed challenge option in mind, we’ve put a call out via our Facebook page for ideas for challenges that address issues around confidence. We hope to turn these into free resources that you can use with your students while we continue to redevelop our PSHE Short Course behind the scenes.

When we decided to create this opportunity on Facebook, my natural teacher instinct for creating active learning opportunities kicked in and I put my own other agreed challenge forward:

Research websites that aim to help you build your confidence and resilience then collect strategies to meet this need (e.g.www.skillsyouneed.com/ps/confidence.html).

Create an information flyer that would advise other young people how they can build their confidence and be more resilient to criticism.

This activity would enable the young person to make their own decisions about how they could approach the task. Resilience should not be overlooked as a significant part of building confidence: it can help a young person overcome unnecessary or hurtful comments that can be a negative outcome of the social media phenomenon.

How do you think teachers can help to develop young people’s confidence? We’d love to hear your general thoughts or specific challenge ideas below or via our Facebook page.

Author: Gareth Lewis, Former ASDAN National Development Co-ordinator

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