Learning to Love, Loving to Learn

Communication and Relationships

Communication and Relationships
Sean Carroll

Students explore the role of communication in relationships.

Grade 5 has moved into the investigating stage of their current unit of inquiry. After spending a week investigating the physical changes that occur during adolescences, students moved on to explore some of the social, emotional, and intellectual changes during this time. In addition, students looked at how relationships impact these changes and vice versa. 

In one activity, students explored how communication can impact our relationships, and thus affect our well-being during adolescences. Students were introduced to the idea that you can be passive, aggressive, or assertive in a relationship.  Students defined each of these terms and sorted some responses to a conflict situation as either passive, aggressive, or assertive. 

As a next step, students were given a situation and had to write a response to match each of the three communication styles. Groups acted out some of the scenarios, guessed what type of response somebody was using, or suggested ways to make a response more passive, more aggressive, or more assertive.

Students followed up this activity by watching the film, "Cliques, Phonies, and other Baloney."  Students critiqued the actions of the characters as their relationships deteriorated and were then rebuild.  Students suggested alternatives for the characters when they found them being passive or aggressive.

We will continue to explore the role of relationships in adolescences and how relationships contribute to our evolving concept of self.

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