A Fun (No, Really!) Way to Discuss the Five Stages of Grief

fun way to discuss five stages grief kubler ross

We’ve been discussing Erikson’s Stages of Development and I think Integrity vs. Despair is a great time to discuss the Five Stages of Grief.

Although it’s an important topic, the grieving process is not especially a fun one. It can be especially raw for some students. I share my experience of losing my sister-in-law and the challenges my husband’s family and I went through. I think it’s best to start with real examples instead of just launching into the fun stuff or it could seem like I’m making light of student’s potential pain.

After I share my examples and admit that discussing grieving is quite the downer, I explain that we’ll transition into a lighter discussion of the stages.

I start by showing this clip of Teen Titans experiencing the five stages of grief after losing a couch.

Then I divide students into groups and have them write a story about the stages of grief in a non-death situation. As the students read their stories aloud the rest of the class identifies how they are going through the stages.

An example I share is starting your car to find your battery is dead. We’ve been there… How many times do we turn the key before taking the next step? This is classic denial phase. 🙂

My students thought of some great examples:

  • Getting pulled over. “Why me? The car ahead of me was speeding too!” “Oh no, my parents are going to kill me!” “I can’t be getting pulled over… Maybe they are just trying to pass me!”
  • Being down by 20 points in the last two minutes of a state championship basketball game. Players get angry and foul others. They make wild shots. Finally they accept the results bring in second string so everyone can have a chance to play at the state tournament.
  • Finding your Ipod in the pocket of your fleece that has just been through the washer and dryer
  • You’re without a laptop charger and you have an online quiz due soon.

We laughed a lot and had a great time identifying with the stories.

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Primal Cut Collaborative Poster Project | Family and Consumer Sciences | Agriculture

primal-cuts-beef-butcher-poster

The big picture I want my students to take from our meat unit is being able to choose the correct cooking method for each cut of meat. Knowing this has to do with knowing where the muscle is located on the animal and whether it is used for movement or not.

A project I enjoy that teaches this is making a life size steer diagram of the different primal cuts. (This guy turned out a little small. I had the students do a pig diagram as well because I have a big class this term.)

I project an image of a primal cut diagram on my board and trace the different parts. Each students is assigned a primal cut.

Their poster should include:

  • Bold title of primal cut
  • Landmarks, bones, or muscles included
  • Fabricated cuts commonly made
  • Recommended cooking method
  • Three recipes that use the fabricated cuts (Titles only are sufficient)

This project pairs well with Modern Marvels: Butcher (currently unavailable through Amazon but I am able to get it with my Learn360 membership). Modern Marvels discusses how meat is inspected and regulated, equipment used, and different careers. In the future I would like to arrange for my students to visit a locker but this great documentary is as close as I can get in the meantime. It gives a true picture of what goes into meat production without too much gore.

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Cookie Jar Project For Cookie Types and Definitions | Family and Consumer Sciences

types-of-cookies-baking-bakery-home-economics-family-and-consumer-sciences

Fruits and vegetables posters here, magnets here.

I’m a bit of a nerd for vintage pottery and glassware. I start our cookie unit geeking out a little bit about my favorite brands and styles of vintage cookie jars. I have a few on display.

I explain to my students that they are going to be adding to my vintage cookie jar collection. They can design their own cookie jar or look online for vintage inspiration.

Within the cookie jar students need to draw the six types of cookies. Each cookie is labeled with the type and definition. It should be in a shape that exemplifies the cookie. This is what I use for “notes” for the cookie unit.

I love the creativity that the students show with this project! Students really remember what they write. There is a little friendly competition involved too. The finished cookie jars are definitely my favorite decoration.

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I hope what you've read is useful! I post here biweekly with resources for Family and Consumer Sciences and Home Economics teachers and share my classroom happenings much more frequently on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Sign up to receive an email when new content is added to my blog. Thanks for visiting!