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Anxiety: Making Peace with Your Enemy

Lesson created by Karen Goepen-Wee using

Video from Karen Goepen-Wee YouTube Channel

Let’s Begin…

Increasingly, more and more students are coming into our classrooms with diagnosed or undiagnosed anxiety disorders. What should teachers know? How can one describe what it is like to live with anxiety?  Is it possible to learn how to manage and live with anxiety? In this lesson the viewer will learn what anxiety is and what strategies work best when coping with this very common disorder. 

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Additional Resources for you to Explore
Seth Godin writes that "Anxiety is practising failure in advance. Anxiety is needless and imaginary. it's fear about feer, fear that means nothing."  Most sufferers of anxiety would agree. And therein lies the frustration: students with anxiety know their fears are often unfounded, but they struggle to overcome the sometimes overwhelming effects anyway. 

So what can we do? 

Knowledge goes a long way in dispelling many of the myths and stigmas surrounding anxiety diorders.  John Green's video on OCD & Anxiety Disorders: Crash Course Psychology #29is a good place to start. 

A few more great places to get a good general understanding of anxiety and its manifestations are:  The Child Mind Institute's Guide on Generalized Anxiety.  They also have published a guide on Anxiety in the Classroom

The website Understood  also has a number of very good resources for teachers, parents of children who have attention or learning disabiltities. Oftentimes, a child's anxiety is caused or exacerbated by their frustrations with their learning disability as outlined in the article Anxiety: Why It's Different from Stress .  Understood also has a number of checklists that can help parents and teachers determine whether nor not their child's stress is anxiety: Signs your young child might be struggling with anxiety and Signs your tween or teen might be struggling with anxiety are good places to go.

If you suspect that your child is struggling with anxiety, please access your health care provider. There are many, many strategies and therepies that can help your child manage their anxiety. One method that is very successful is mindfulness. A great resource that include mindfulness scripts you can use with your child is  This resource is develop with youth in mind and is worth a look. 

The three students who made this video clearly outlined how anxiety effects their life. They also were very clear that there is much that one can do when it comes to manage one's symptoms. 

But the challenge to those of us who do not suffer from anxiety is to recognize it's symptoms, it's causes, and it's manifestation in our loved ones. 

What will you do to help make this world a place to feel less anxious about? 

Research anxiety and it's causes and create a product you think will help everyone better understand this mental health disorder. Share it via your social media platform of choice. 

Could you also engineer a feedback loop into your resource? Taking a look at the feedback you recieve will enable you to develop an even better product.

Avatar for Karen Goepen-Wee
Karen Goepen-Wee
Lesson Creator
Calgary, Alberta, Canada

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