This article outlines how teachers can introduce their students to Skodel
Informing my students
Not all students will be engaged with Skodel immediately and that is ok. Below is an example script of what you might like to say to your students to introduce Skodel (aim to do this just before the first check-in is sent):
"I am going to start checking in with you throughout the year from time to time to give you an opportunity to let me know how things are going and share any achievements, concerns or anything else that you wish to let me know about. You will receive an email from Skodel soon with a link to complete a quick check-in, which should take up to a minute max."
For your benefit, here is what the Student Check-In Experience is like and you might like to share this with students. If students select 'Ok' in that first question, they will be taken straight to the third question. Once introduced, encourage students to carry out their first check-in!
Tip: Include an action plan to respond to the data and make changes. For example - On the first Monday of each month we will send out the check-in. The next day on Tuesday, I will review the data and send out a thank you email that day to everyone with changes we will make moving forward.
Engagement Tip: One way to engage students is to use 'Skodel Reactions' after students have checked in. This feature allows you to react with an emoji or comment on a student's check-in as displayed below. Students will be notified of this reaction. It is a powerful way to let the student know their voice is being heard.
Suggested activity to introduce Skodel
If you are open to a more interactive and immersive introduction, we recommend the following:
First ask students if it is ok if you run two small activities related to wellbeing. Permission will help. Once granted, say "the first activity relates to using our feelings to understand who we are, while the second one is about how we can plan our way towards better wellbeing".
"So in this first exercise, I'd like you to take a minute to answer the following question - when was the last time you felt really angry and what triggered it?"
You can ask students if they'd be willing to share their experiences. Then you can say the following (or a variation of it depending on the age of students):
"Anger is often considered a negative feeling, but it is a very valuable feeling. It helps us recognise what we are passionate about and what is important to us. We can use anger to help set boundaries in our lives. There are often other feelings such as powerlessness, vulnerability, or being controlled that sit behind anger. We might, for example, mask rejection with anger. It's important to get granular and identify what feelings sit behind our anger. By understanding our anger and seeing the value it can provide for us, we are less likely to let it dominate us. Anger, like all feelings, has a lot to teach us."
If you'd like to run a second short exercise, try this one:
Note: this second exercise is only relevant if you'd like to introduce wellbeing planning to your students, so feel free to skip this one if you want to focus on the check-ins only for now.
One of the benefits of listening to how we are feeling is we learn more about ourselves, which areas we are going well in and areas we might like to make adjustments. So for the second exercise, I'd like you to pair up with a partner and consider one of the following areas in your life you'd like to work on:
- Looking after yourself
- Looking after your body
- Energy levels and enough rest
- Helping others
- Learning and work
Co-create a small and achievable goal for one of these areas. Try to anchor it in your existing behaviour if possible, for example, I wake up each morning and I have toast with butter for breakfast. A goal of mine could be to spread less butter on my toast and this could be added to 'Looking after my body'. A question that can be helpful is, what can I start doing, stop doing, do more of or do less of to improve in this area e.g. spend more time with positive people."
Ask students if they would be open to sharing the goal they came up with and if there is a particular reason they decided on that goal.
After the activity
Skodel has created a guide you can share with your students to support them in understanding what Skodel is, its purpose and how they can interact with it. Click below to download this guide: