Aussie Optimism programs and workshops

Aussie Optimism comprises four classroom-based programs, and one family based program. The Aussie Optimism programs are based on psychological and educational research into the risk and protective factors associated with psychological difficulties. The programs focus on competence, resilience and skill building. All programs were designed to be run by the teacher in the classroom with all children. There are ten modules that are ideally run once a week for the whole term. All programs are mapped to the new curriculum.

Workshops

Our workshops are designed to enable teachers and school staff to implement the Aussie Optimism programs effectively.

The workshops provide background information on mental health and mental health promotion, as well as information about program content and implementation. You’ll have plenty of opportunity to practice activities from the program, so you feel ready to use them in class.

We offer several one-day workshops on campus each year. Our trainers at the Department of Education, Catholic Education and AISWA run additional workshops in schools.

children hugging

Selecting a program

Firstly, identify the program that is developmentally appropriate for your students. For example, if your students are in year 4, the Positive Thinking Skills Program is most appropriate.

Secondly, consider the needs of your students. If you are teaching years 7 or 8 and have noticed that your students are making a lot of negative comments about themselves, start with Optimistic Thinking Skills. If social skills development is in greater need, start with Social Life Skills.

Feelings and Friends (for students in years 1-3)

Feelings and Friends is the latest addition to our suite of programs. Feelings and Friends comprises one program for students in year 1 and 2, and a separate program for students in year 3. Both programs come with a parent booklet as well as a student booklet.

The focus of the Feelings and Friends programs is on social emotional skills like recognising feelings in ourselves, and then later in others by looking and listening. Emotion recognition is a precursor for the development of empathy and plays an important part in making and maintaining friendships. Basic feelings are explored as well as basic friendship skills, and the year 3 program also has an age-appropriate module on conflict management.

Attend a workshop so you can learn to implement ‘Feelings and Friends’ at your school

In our ‘Feelings and Friends’ workshop you will learn:

  • Recognising feelings
  • Basic emotion vocabulary
  • Recognising ‘body clues’
  • Improving relationships
  • Developing social networks
  • Learning coping strategies
  • Managing conflicts

Check dates & register and pay online

These courses are held at Curtin University, Bentley campus.

Positive Thinking Skills (for students in year 4)

Developmentally appropriate for students in year 4, this program focuses on emotional competence, and cognitive skills. The program assists students to identify their feelings as being positive or negative, to express feelings and to become aware of other people’s feelings. The program increases awareness of the relationship between feelings and thoughts, and students learn strategies to cope with fears, how to relax and think rationally about situations. These skills enable children to be resilient and feel good about themselves.

Attend a workshop so you can learn to implement ‘Positive Thinking Skills’ at your school

In our ‘Positive Thinking Skills’ workshop you will learn:

  • Developing positive thinking skills
  • Understanding that doing fun things is good for us
  • Facing fears
  • Understanding that thoughts and feelings are connected

Check dates & register and pay online

These courses are held at Curtin University, Bentley campus.

Social Life Skills (for students in year 5-6)

Attend a workshop so you can learn to implement ‘Social Life Skills’ at your school

In our ‘Social Life Skills’ workshop you will learn:

  • Identifying emotions
  • Developing communication skills
  • Developing effective decision making skills
  • Identifying and developing social support networks
  • Developing coping skills

Check dates & register and pay online

These courses are held at Curtin University, Bentley campus.

Optimistic Thinking Skills (for students in years 7-8)

Attend a workshop so you can learn to implement ‘Optimistic Thinking Skills’ at your school

In our ‘Optimistic Thinking Skills’ workshop you will learn:

  • Understanding the link between thoughts and feelings
  • Applying optimistic thinking styles
  • Challenging negative thinking styles

Check dates & register and pay online

These courses are held at Curtin University, Bentley campus.

Parents and Families (family based for 11+ year olds)

This self-directed program is designed for families with a developing adolescent who is making the transition to high school and helps parents and families work together to navigate the sometimes tricky path of parenting an adolescent. The program covers issues such as searching for identity, pushing the limits, working together as a family, thinking optimistically, friendships, and the move to high school. It includes information, cartoons, tips, and activities. A CD-ROM with newsletter items, a parent presentation, and information for parent-teacher meetings is also available, to help schools promote the use of the Parent and Family program by families in the school community.