Young people participating in The IDENTITY Project share what thoughts comes to mind when they explore their self-awareness and their feelings about life as it is now. These are boys aged 13-15 years old.
The IDENTITY Project is a 13-week project if taught for a recommended 90 minutes per week. However, it is extremely flexible and can fit into any timetable. It is designed to build resilience, confidence, self-esteem and to develop emotional intelligence. This is done through facilitated workshops using techniques and questions derived from Coaching and NLP, this includes guiding the young people to use positive self-talk, perceptual positioning, modelling, future pacing and a variety of other techniques. Icebreakers designed to increase emotional intelligence will be used at the beginning of each session.
A strengths-based coaching approach will be used throughout the project, whereby all the scheduled activities will build on the existing strengths of all young people while improving their weaknesses. This approach will significantly improve the positive energy of young people, connecting their values to what they actually do, which will make them happier and more successful as they become more resourceful and resilient in the face of adversity. Their self-awareness, self-knowledge and motivation will also improve, which will create opportunities for them to set short, medium and long-term goals as they begin to identify possible barriers that they have created for themselves and make necessary changes to the forward journey for their future success.
The impact of this project will be measured by:
Achieving a Level 1 or Level 2 accreditation when completed.
360-degree feedback process involving: parent/s or carer/s, teaching staff across all subjects, external agency staff working with individuals, and peers. This process will be used to score each young person on a range of alleged competencies at the onset of the project and when the project has ended.
DISC profiling reports to identify the characteristics of young people and to support young people to recognise how they work best to achieve good outcomes.
Hard data such as attendance, GCSE predictions and school-based behaviour monitoring records will also be used at the start and end of the project.
Young people (x6) who have scored very low on the 360 in specific areas of their school and home life, which could potentially become problematic in the future, can receive 6 weeks of one-to-one coaching, a 30 to 60-minute session per week via school referral to Elevated Minds.
All sessions will be based around the letters of the word IDENTITY.
The social objective of The IDENTITY Project is to:
Reduce the number of young people who are excluded from mainstream education and feel pressured to join gangs
Reduce the number of young people who join gangs because they feel that they have no other choices.
Reduce the number of young people who carry weapons or who become involved in violent crime.
The impact of participating in this programme will support the development of confidence and resilience, empowering young people to say ‘no!’ and mean it. It will also empower them to take their life forwards towards their dreams and towards positive outcomes.
I – What is IDENTITY?
Young people will be able to talk about their identity, the differences between personality and identity, what makes us all unique and what makes us similar to others. They will define their values and recognise the need to align their actions with their values for future success. The ability for young people to identify their strengths is an integral part of the subsequent change. They will experience how to connect their strengths with their skills to improve their short, medium and long-term outcomes.
D – Dreams and Aspirations
Aspirations are important, but some young people do not allow themselves to dream of the future or to aspire to be someone great. This section will allow discussions and activities around goal setting, life mapping, different zones and dreams & aspirations.
E – Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence is the ability to identify and understand your own emotions as well as the emotions of others. Increasing emotional intelligence not only leads to improved relationships and friendships, but also helps within the home, school and within the workplace. Did you know that many employers now perceive emotional intelligence to be more important than IQ and skill set?
N – No! How to be assertive
How often do young people show aggression instead of assertiveness? This topic will focus on how to be assertive, what are Assertive Rights, and how to say ‘no’ in difficult situations. Discussions and exercises will take place around applying assertive skills to real life.
T – Talk to me
Being able to communicate well with unfamiliar people and speaking to large groups is a skill that many adults have not mastered. In this section, young people will learn techniques to make them feel more confident when speaking out loud and to audiences. They will use techniques such as modelling and role play. Discussions and exercises will take place around many aspects of communication.
I – Image & Intentions
Young people will research, discuss and understand the importance of self-image and personal branding and what makes people look appealing. They will look at what is significant about image, first impressions and how a person’s image can be portrayed in both a positive and negative light. They will find out the consequences of negative images and intentions through discussions with professionals, such as a prospective employer and a representative from a local college. In addition, the Safer Schools Officer for your school will be asked to contribute to the discussion on self-image under the Guidance of a policing expert. Young people will also set short, medium and long-term goals as the way forward to a successful future.
Exercises regarding positive role models will take place.
BE. DO. HAVE. will take young people through a process of setting realistic future goals in which motivation and commitment to achieve them will be measured and supported.
Based on the themes covered in The IDENTITY Project, young people will be required to work as a team on a short project. Previous projects have covered subjects such as emotional intelligence, motivation and aspirations, perceptual positioning, assertive rights, communication, self-image, preparing a speech/monologue, re-enacting an interview and writing poems/short stories. Not only will they pull together all of the skills they have learnt throughout the project, but they will also learn to work as a team to present it all in the next session.
Y – Yourself
This will be the last section of The IDENTITY Project, and it will give young people the opportunity to focus on what they have learnt about themselves during the project. They will have a chance to discuss and share techniques that have helped them to gain instant confidence in given situations, techniques to identify unhelpful emotions and how to change them according to the situation, they will be able to share their goals and aspirations and will talk through their completed Life Map.
Young people will be given opportunities to refer to and draw on the strategies, skills and techniques learned prior to and during its delivery. Young people will be able to continue to practise skills and techniques in subsequent years and add to what they have learnt through ensuing experiences. All young people will have an IDENTITY Project Workbook, which can be added to, not only as they progress through the project, but also following the end of the project. This will create a profile for the learner, encompassing everything they have learnt with the aim of being able to create a C.V., develop interview skills and techniques, improve skills when dealing with difficult situations, improve public speaking skills and build confidence, self-esteem and self-awareness.