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topic four – a way of life

teacher's notes - general approach

Through the previous topics, some pupils may have come to a realization that there are things which they want to change in their lives in order to gain more self-respect. However, this can be very difficult. The aim of this topic is to give some help to those who want to make the first step in such changes. Also, since personal change is one way that everyone can attain inner growth and maturity, other members of the class should be encouraged to try it too.

Self respect involves being "comfortable with oneself" - having a clear conscience. This comes from being honest about one's mistakes and then deciding to put things right, thus beginning the process of change. The poem Hello Light comes from the experience of turning one's back on the past. This needs to be followed by a consideration of how to keep on the newly-chosen path.

The approach is one of experimentation with new ideas and, perhaps for some, a new way of life. The resource sheets for this and the previous topic are true case studies on which the class can draw. There is also a simplified version of the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous which actually sets out a method of living for the whole of one's life.

For this work it is important that no one feels that their privacy is threatened. It may even be right to suggest that the work on worksheet 11 pages 23 & 24 goes home with them and does not appear on their file unless they wish it to. There may also be those who want further help along this path, and sensitivity will be needed.

A visit from someone who is recovering from addiction and has found a faith through the experience would also be a chance for the class to ask questions that arise in their minds.


For this topic worksheets 10 & 11 pages 22, 23 & 24 will be needed as well as resource sheets 3 & 4 on pages 25 and 26.

task one

Give everyone a copy of Hello Light on worksheet 10 page 22 and have it read aloud to the class. Let them do some art work or some original writing, or act out what this poem evokes for them.


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