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Lesson 2

Lesson 2: Understanding Your Feelings


  • Explain why adolescence can be a confusing time (appearance, personality, future) and that this is a natural part of growing up;
  •  Explain that most adolescents experience similar challenges and uncertainties; list four changes during adolescence and explain that developing sexual feelings and feelings related to love is part of growing up; List at least four emotions and how these can be expressed;
  •  Identify some important emotions of their own; Explain that fluctuating emotions are part of adolescence; Explain the concepts of self-awareness and self-esteem; Explain that youngest people find it important what other people think of them, especially peers; Explain that, in adolescence, young people become more independent from their parents and get more responsibilities as they grow older; List at least five things for which an adolescent is gaining responsibility during adolescence; 
  • Explain the right to their own decision-making; Describe how peers and media can – positively and negatively – influence their opinion about themselves. 
  • Argue the importance of self-awareness, self-esteem and self-respect;
  • Argue the importance of respect for each unique individual and of empathy with peers; 
  • Show awareness of the right to their own decision-making;
  • Argue the importance of sharing with peers the difficulties involved in emotional changes;
  •  Argue the relation between the influence of the media and peers and the right to their own decision-making.
  • Provide a scenario for how to initiate a friendship and how to initiate support from friends; 
  • Demonstrate social skills (listening to other people, complimenting other people);
  •  Explain step by step how to solve a problem when they have a problem with other young people; 
  •  Demonstrate communication skills to communicate and share concerns with parents and friends.


 In this lesson, pupils read  a  presentation  about  the  emotional  challenges  of  an  adolescent.  They reflect for themselves what issues they encounter and they do role plays about expressing and dealing with emotions.  This is how you can introduce this lesson to the pupils: ‘You may have noticed that some things change as you become an adult. While you go through quite drastic physical changes,  the  funny  thing  is  that  the  emotional  changes  can  be  even  more  overwhelming.  You will probably ask yourself: ‘What is happening with me? Why do I find myself crying over small things? Why am I disagreeing with my parents, while before I just liked to be with them? I’m so much more aware of my body all of a sudden, I don’t want people to look at me!’ In this lesson, you will be informed about these emotional ups and downs. And you will   practice talking about the emotional challenges of being an adolescent.  In the next lesson, we  will  be  looking  at    body  changes  in adolescents. But first…let’s greet each other!’ 

Learning Resources

Teaching Methodologies

In this lesson teachers and learners can use different teaching methodologies like

  • Method1
  • Method2
  • Method3
  • Method4

Delivery of this lesson will be done with minimum requirement that discussed in the following steps.

1. Reflect (some minutes) Ask a few pupils to tell something about their reflection activity from the previous lesson. 

2. Greeting Game (5 mins)   


  • Pupils move and interact with each other in a fun way. 


How Explain the different greetings and appoint/invite a leader and invite pupils to move up and down and around within the space available, one pupil leading the game (The leading person does not participate in the game). 

Suddenly, the leader says ‘find a partner’ and calls out a type of greeting. Everyone greets the person they are with at

that moment in the style appropriate to the greeting named. Repeat the game until everyone has practiced each greeting. 

Greeting 1 is ‘Greet a good friend’  Greeting 2 is ‘Greet your mother or father’  Greeting 3 is ‘Greet a stranger’  Greeting 4 is ‘Greet your boyfriend or girlfriend’ 

3. Ego Booster (15 mins)    


  •  Pupils are reminded that everyone has good qualities.
  • Pupils concentrate on their positive sides.
  •  Pupils feel empowered.


Step 1: Each pupil takes a piece of paper and writes his/her name at the top. 

Step 2: Each pupil passes the paper around the class. Each person who gets the paper writes something positive about  this  pupil  at  the  bottom  of  the  page,  folds  it  from  the  bottom  up  to  cover  what  they  have  written  and  then  passes it on to another pupil. When all pupils have had their turn, the paper returns to its owner.

Step 3: Finally, all pupils get their own papers back with a list of positive things about themselves.

 Step 4: Ask a few pupils to share something on their paper with the group.

4. Emotional Ups and Downs – Presentation (30 mins) 


  • Students are introduced to the topics of fluctuating emotions, heightened responsibility, rights and the importance of peers, and are given some advice and tips on how to deal with these changes. 
  • Pupils identify their own feelings as part of this period of growing up and recognize similarities with their  peers. 


Step 1 Questions  are  not  intended  as  a  knowledge  quiz  but  to  help  pupils  identify  what  they  are  presently  dealing  with. 

5. Factors that lower Self-Esteem

  1.  Explain  that  there  are  reasons  why  many  young  people  have  low  self-esteem.  Very often, the  negative self-esteem is when you are ‘put down’ by other people. 
  2. What is ‘put down’? Ask the pupils to explain the meaning of the ‘put down’ and write it in large letters on  the board.  Put-down: a word, phrase, expression, statement, gesture, or situation that results in a person feeling not good  enough, not important, not capable, or less valued or significant than before.   
  3. Ask learners to give examples of put-downs and write them on the board. Examples include:  ‘that’s a silly idea’  ‘How can you do such a stupid thing?’  ‘I suppose that’s the best you can do’  ‘what idiot did do that?’  You can also ask to discuss gestures or non-verbal messages as put-downs. 
  4. Put the responses on the board. Then ask the learners to discuss whether it is only other people who put us  down, or do we do it also ourselves, and how? Some examples to put ourselves down include:  Not accepting compliments: ‘Oh, I’m not really that good, I was just lucky’  By responding when someone says: ‘Hey stupid!’  By accepting nicknames like shorty, fatty, or thickhead
  5. Divide the learners into groups and have them discuss the following questions: 1. How do put-downs affect us? 2. How are we likely to feel about ourselves if we believe put-downs? 
  6. Emphasize that people who are used to being put-down:
  7. Find it difficult to interact with others or meet new people because they are afraid of rejection
  8. Are easily influenced or do things they do not want to do in order to be accepted? 1. cannot stand up for their rights 2. Lack of confidence 3. find it difficult to make decisions

7.  Discuss  with  the  pupils  what  can  be  done  to  increase  your  self-esteem.  Write  a  list  on  the  board  and  ask  pupils to choose the best possibilities to write on a paper and keep his personal list for themselves.  

6. Promoting Self-Esteem

  1.  Ask pupils to fix a large piece of paper to each other’s back. Have everyone walk around the room looking at people and then write on the sheets on their backs any POSITIVE thing or feeling they have about them. There are 2 rules: it must be positive and it must be genuine. 
  2. Have  pupils  take  turns  reading  out  three  statements  that  have  been  written  about  them,  beginning  the sentence with: ‘I am ….’ 
  3. Discuss how it can be difficult to accept praise. And discuss the following questions: 
  • How did this activity make you feel?
  • Were you afraid people would not have anything good to say about you?
  • How did it feel for you to write positive qualities to others?
  • What are you going to do with your paper? How are you going to use your positive qualities?   

7. Role Play (30 mins)   


  •  Pupils play out roles in a given situation;
  •  Pupils learn some words to describe confusing feelings and changes;
  •  Pupils experience how it feels to talk about personal things;
  •  Pupils learn by watching how others handle difficult situations. 


Step 1: Divide the class into four groups. Each group is given 5 stories in total. See the pages at the end of the lesson.  Pupils take 10 minutes to:  read the background information about the characters and the situation;  divide the roles; think of what they are going to say to each other. 

 Step 2: The groups perform their role play in front of the group. The groups continue role-playing for a while until the scene comes to a conclusion. 

Step 3  Decide  how  many  role  plays  can  be  performed  considering  the  time  available.  The  other  groups  watch  and afterwards  comment  on  choices  made  and  things  said  in  the  role  plays. You  can  use  suggested  questions  to help discussing each role play: 

What do you think of the situation?

How did they respond?

How could they improve their response to their team mates?

How did they explain the situation?

What could they have done or said differently?

8. Conclusion and homework (5 mins)

Ask the groups for any general comments or remarks on the lesson and what they have learned. Homework  Tell  pupils  their  homework  activity  for  the  coming  week:  ask  pupils  to  look  out  for  situations  related  to  this lesson and write down three examples they come across over the next few days when they or their peers are having difficulty being an adolescent. 

 1  Role play stories   

Story 1: Charity and David: breasts?  


  •   Pupils learn that every young person changes in a different way and at a different pace;
  •  Pupils learn to talk about sensitive issues with someone of the opposite sex;
  •  Pupils practice assertiveness skills;
  •  Pupils experience support from health care provider.
  • Introduction to the role play and the characters 

Meskele is a 13-year-old girl who is worried about her body and her appearance. Her breasts are bigger than  those of all other girls in her class. Tariku is one of Charity’s classmates. He and some other boys tease Meskele about her breast size. They say that her breasts are big because she has already had sexual intercourse. Meskele knows  she  hasn’t  had  sex  yet,  but  she  is  worried  why  her  breasts  are  much  bigger  than  those  of  all other  girls  in  her  class.  Meskele ‘s  friend  doesn’t  know  either  but  advises  her  to  ask  a  nurse  who  lives  in  the neighbourhood.  Meskele visits the nurse, an older lady, who explains that it is a myth that breast are bigger if you have had sexual intercourse. She tells her: ‘Myths like these can be dangerous, mostly because they add to your worries. They  make  you  think  you  can  do  things  to  change  something  that  you  just  cannot  control.  The  bodies  of  all adolescents change, some slower, some faster and all in different ways. There is nothing to be worried about, so tell your peers they are wrong!’  

 Role play 

 Tariku sees Meskele leaving the nurse’s house and takes the opportunity to tease her:  Tariku:  ‘Hi  Meskele,  are  you  worried  about  your  sexual  behaviour?’,  he  sneers  at  her,  pointing  to  the  nurse’s house.  Meskele: ‘Let me explain to you…’  

 Suggested questions for the observers: What do you think of the situation?  How did Meskele respond to Tariku?   What were the good points in her response?  Are there any points she could have done differently in her response towards Tariku?   How did she explain the situation?   What could she have done or said differently?   

Story 2: Almaz and Bertukan: mood swings 


  •  Pupils learn to share difficulties with peers;
  •  Pupils learn to talk about sensitive issues with someone they do not know very well;
  •  Pupils experience the importance of support by peers. 
  • Introduction to the role play and the characters 

Almaz is a  12-year-old  girl  with  mood  swings.  Just like  most  adolescents,  hormones  affect  her  emotions.   One minute she may feel happy and excited, but the next minute, she may feel like crying. She feels great about herself one day and bad the next. 

Bertukan self-confident and shy sometimes. She thinks Almaz is a nice girl, but she doesn’t know her very well. Almaz is in another class. A group of girls is hanging out together after school. Sometimes Almaz is invited to join them. The other girls are nice but a bit ‘cool’. Almaz feels good when she is with them, but sometimes she feels insecure. One time, one of the girls made a joke about her looks. Almaz just decided to laugh it off like the rest of the group.   But this time Anteneh makes a joke saying ‘I think Anteneh needs to sleep with someone, and then she’ll be less shy.’ Almaz feels so bad and almost starts to cry and decides to walk away. Now she is ashamed. Why didn’t she just laugh and respond to Anteneh with a joke? 

Bertukan, to talk to her and explain that she sometimes feels insecure. Almaz wants to explain her behaviour to Bertukan, so she will feel less ashamed.  

Role play

Almaz: ‘Hi Bertukan, I wanted to talk to you about what happened yesterday.’  

Bertukan: ‘… Suggested questions for the observers:   What do you think of the situation?  Did Almaz approach Bernadette well?  How did Bertukan respond?   Did Almaz explain her situation well?   What could both have done or said differently? 

 Story 3: Tolosa and his mother: ‘help, I have hair everywhere’  


  •  Pupils learn to talk with parents about sensitive topics such as emotions and physical changes;
  •  Pupils experience the importance of support by parents. 
  • Introduction to the role play and the characters 

Tolosa is professional soccer player. tolosa looks like an average 13-year-old boy.  Tolosa’s  mother has ten children,  seven  of whom are still alive and living at home. Tolosa’s father died a year ago. tolosa ‘s mother  is always very busy because she has to   provide food and clothes for the family. She also has to provide school fees for tolosa.    Tolosa is her eldest. Up till now, she hasn’t seen any signs of puberty, but these days Patrick is not behaving the same way he did before. Tolosa is shocked! Since a few months, hair has been growing on his private parts. He thinks he’s sick and he Finally, he plucks up the courage to tell his mother. He thinks she won’t make fun of him. He’s afraid his friends will make fun of him and girls won’t find him attractive if they find out about the hair. 

 Role play  Tolosa decides to talk to his mother, hoping she will listen to him.  

Tolosa: ‘Mum, I have to tell you something.’ 

Suggestions for questions for the observers:   What do you think of the situation?  What was good about the way tolosa turned to his mother?  How could he have improved the way he talked to his mother?  Did she explain about the pubic hair well?  What could she have done or said differently?  

 Story 4: Mesgana and Tesfanesh: my friend smells 


  •  Pupils learn that there are ways to live hygienically; 
  • Pupils learn to talk about sensitive topics with friends; 
  • Pupils experience the importance of support from peers
  • Introduction to the role play and the characters

Mesgana is 10 years old. She talks a lot and is quite outgoing. Mesgana has two elder sisters. One of them is  still living at home. Tesfanesh is one of Mesgana ‘s friends. Charlotte is very fond of her.  Tesfanesh is jealous of Charlotte: she is so funny and sharp and she has big sisters to talk to.  Mesgana and Tesfanesh have been friends for a few years now. Tesfanesh is sometimes shy and doesn’t find it easy to  talk about herself. Lately, Mesgana has noticed that Tesfanesh smells sweaty. Tesfanesh herself probably noticed it too Mesgana ‘s sister told Mesgana that there’s deodorant you can use to avoid this. Mesgana wants Tesfanesh to feel  more comfortable again and tries to talk about the subject.  

 Role play 

Mesgana: Tesfanesh, you know what I have noticed among some of us lately  …’  

Tesfanesh: ‘Tell me …’ 

  •  Suggested questions for the observers:
  •  What do you think of the situation? 
  • Did Mesgana introduce the subject well?  
  • Could she have improved the way she talked to Tesfanesh?  
  • Did Mesgana explain the situation well?  
  • Did Tesfanesh respond adequately?   
  • What could both Tesfanesh and Mesgana have done or said differently?

 Story 5. Meron and Amha: giving positive support to each other 


  •  Pupils learn to deal with media influence;
  •  Pupils experience support from other people in accepting themselves; 
  • Pupils learn assertiveness skills.
  • Introduction to the role play and the characters

Meron  is  9  years  old.  She’s  curious  and  wants  to  live  a  life  that’s  different  from  that  of  her  mother.  She dreams a lot and loves watching television: one day she will be on the catwalk! Amha, her brother, is 14 years old. He’s the eldest one living at his parents’ home and feels responsible for his brothers and sisters.   Mero wants to become a model. Not just a model, no she really wants to become a star. She looks fine, but she thinks of herself as being too fat. Amha thinks it’s ridiculous and even shameful that his sister wants to always alcohol and drugs involved. If he says something about this to Meron, she’s strong headed and has only one problem on her mind: she thinks she’s too fat and she doesn’t want to eat normally anymore!   Amha’  parents  will  never  allow  Meron  to  live  a  life  as  a  model.  Amha  wants  to  prevent  his  parents  from knowing  what  Meron  is  dreaming  of  and  tries  to  persuade  Meron  to  eat  and  act  normally  again.  Amha wants to confront her with the influence of the media on Suzanne’s taste. He shows her pictures of Ugandan models and pictures of Ethiopia models with a Western look.   For  him,  it’s  obvious  that  Ugandan  models  look  much  better,  healthier  and  more  decent.  Besides,  as  a  tiny model Suzanne will never find a husband.  

 Role play  One evening, Amha decides to talk to Meron about this.  

Amha: ‘Meron, I want to show you an example of what beauty is.’  Suzanne: ‘…’

 Suggested questions for the observers: 

  • What do you think of the situation? 
  • Did Moses try to change Meron’s opinion well?  
  • How could Amha have improved his presentation?  
  • Did Meron respond to Amha well?  
  • How did Meron try to convince Amha of her future dream?  
  • What could both Amha and Meron have done or said differently?   



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Quiz for Lesson 2

Quiz for Lesson 2

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2.1. Which one of the following words show a positive feeling?

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2.2. During adolescence, children are becoming more independent:

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2.3. Who is the most responsible person to decide about you?

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2.4. Among the following characteristics one is less important during the age of adolescence.

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2.5. What shall you do in social communication skill?

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2.6. Young people become more independent from their parents and get more responsibilities as they grow older.

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2.7. Which of the following is positive feeling?

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2.8. From whom you get right and constructive comments/feed backs during the age of adolescence?

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2.9. Which social environment most importantly use in the development of someone’s identity?

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2.10. Which characteristic is not describepositive personality?

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2.11. Personal identity is a combination of:

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2.12. In which of the following that Adolescence is a critical stage in people’s life?

Your score is

The average score is 18%



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