You are here

What to do when challenging situations arise: tips for teachers

Parent Zone has been working with the Dove Self-Esteem Project to help boost pupils' self-esteem. 

‘I had a pupil who told me that they wanted to look like this appearance ideal and that it was worth the effort.’ 

Pupils' responses can be unpredictable and difficult situations are bound to occur in the classroom. 

Dr Nancy Etcoff, assistant clinical professor in psychology at Harvard University and Dove Self-Esteem Project expert, offers her advice for teachers on what to do in certain challenging situations. This video addresses some situations that teachers may face whilst delivering the Dove Self-Esteem Project's 'Confident Me' workshops and Dr Etcoff provides helpful strategies for teachers.

‘I had a pupil who told me that they wanted to look like this appearance ideal and that it was worth the effort,’ explains Diane Harrill, a teacher at Newent community school in Gloucestershire.

'That's a common problem and one way is to get pupils to try and think about it from a different point of view. One thing you can ask is, "Are there any downsides to holding this appearance ideal?" Let them think about that and then ask if anything good could come out of not holding that ideal and from thinking in a different way,' Dr Etcoff advises. 

'You want to avoid getting into a debate where a pupil keeps on repeating: "But I like this appearance ideal,"' says Dr Etcoff. 'It’s important to distinguish between an appearance ideal and a healthy body. A healthy person is eating well, exercising and has good overall mental and physical health. But, an appearance ideal is all about looking a particular way and doing whatever it takes to get there,' she explains. 

Register for FREE teaching resources to deliver the single session 45-minute workshop in your school.

For parents

Download the free Uniquely Me parent guide to hand out to your pupils and parents.

 

Uniquely Me parent guide.pdf

This downloadable pdf contains expert advice from Dove Self-Esteem Project global experts from the fields of psychology, body image, self-esteem, eating disorders and media representation to create a resource for parents that is focused on advice and action.

Parent Zone is working with the Dove Self-Esteem Project to help boost UK pupils' body confidence through its PSHE Association-approved in-school workshops. Find out more about the full programme here.