Stress management lesson plans help you organize, teach and communicate all there is to know about stress. Use them in the classroom or during team building sessions to help groups understand stress and stress reduction, though you may need to modify them for younger classroom audiences.
Information on Stress
The beginning of each lesson plan should include educational information about stress, such as its sources and the effects it has on the human mind and body. Possible information to include is:
Consider your audience when choosing the best method for distribution of this information. Handouts may be the best choice for short seminars, whereas group discussion may be more appropriate for a team of health-care workers.
If teaching younger audiences, use pictures and try to communicate basic concepts through stories, such as a rabbit going into the fight-or-flight response from a bear chasing him.
Achieving Personal Understanding
Help people understand how this information about stress applies to their individual lives. In a
seminar, you may ask group members to think about the impact stress has on their work productivity or attendance and to share those experiences. You can have the group complete stress management worksheets individually and then compare answers to find common themes. This prepares the group to move into problem solving and
Ask group members to share their ideas or methods for reducing stress. Highlight any positive ideas, such as deep breathing, by writing them on a board.
Discuss the link between stress and unhealthy coping mechanisms, such as alcohol use, when those come into the discussion. It’s helpful to discuss the basic principles of relaxation, such as a clear mind and deep breathing, before moving into activities.
Stress Reduction Activities
A stress reduction activity
will give the class firsthand experience with healthy, positive methods for reducing stress, and you have many activities to choose from. These activities include:
Ask group members to reflect on the stress reduction activity and to communicate their experience with it; journaling may work for some groups, whereas group discussion may benefit others. Questions to ask them may include:
Did the activity promote relaxation for you?
What did you like about it? What did you dislike?
Is this something you will practice at home? Why or why not?
This helps people acknowledge the physical and mental effects of the stress reduction activity and encourages them to use it (or some other technique) during their own time. If
lessons will be a routine for your group, use each session to try a different type of relaxation technique.
Effective stress management
lesson plans cover the many sides of stress so that groups walk away with a well-rounded understanding of its causes and effects, as well as healthy methods to reduce it.