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Strategies for

engaging ‘at risk’

Dr. Felicia Quiqui Shenbonbon
PhD Cognitive Science
What We’ll Cover Today
 Adolescent development
 Physical development
 PDHPE lesson
 Cognitive development
 Goal setting
 Social and Emotional development
 Visual arts task
Adolescent development
 Adolescence is a critical life transition.
 Many changes occur during adolescence
 Physical growth
 Maturation of sexual and reproductive organs
 Emotional development
 Developing a sense of identity
Physical development
 Growth is more obvious during adolescence.
 Physical changes can be stressful and confusing for
 Changes are different for females and males
 Females physically develop breasts and the hips get wider
 Males grow taller, shoulders get wider and muscles grow
larger and become more defined
 Early maturing adolescents can be drawn in to older peer
groups based on physical characteristics.
 Thiscan influence them to participate in inappropriate
 Pubertal timing can impact mental health particularly for
early maturing females.
PDHPE is an important component of education. The curriculum states body image and sex education
including puberty must be taught in the compulsory years of 7-10.
This video is a good starting point for introducing physical development and allowing students to
understand the changes their body will undertake.

Advantages Disadvantages
 Students learn about their body  Students may be embarrassed.
changes in a safe environment.
 Students may not participate in
 Students learn to accept class due to embarrassment.
 Some students may feel
 Students develop a low level
understanding about growth and singled-out or victimised if they
puberty. are or look different to the
accepted ‘norm’.
 Students develop an
understanding that everybody  Early maturing students may
goes through change and not every seek older friendships.
body looks the same.
Cognitive Development
 Thestudy of child development relating to
psychology and neuroscience.
 Construction of thought processes.
 Involves:
 Remembering

 Problem-solving

 Decision-making
Goal Setting
This strategy is useful for cognitive development. Goals can be short-
term or long-term. Research suggests that goal setting allow students to
successfully navigate their own education pathway, rather than seeking a
Advantages Disadvantages
 Goals can set a benchmark  Can cause students to
for achievement. feel inadequate.
 Can serve as motivation.  Some adolescents feel
as though they are not
 Gives a needed push.
good enough to set
 Can change a students goals.
attitude about oneself.
 Goals may be unrealistic
 Successful navigation of or unattainable.
own education.
Social and Emotional
 Full participation of all people in a society to promote
social progress, justice and the betterment of the human
condition and integration of economic, cultural and social
policies are emphasized.
 Family plays a significant role in social development.
 Emotional development involves learning what
feelings and emotions are, understanding how and why
they happen, recognising one’s own feelings and those
of others, and developing effective ways of managing
Visual Arts Program
Using different coloured paints (to represent different emotions), students will choose to paint with
the colours they feel most often. Students will then engage with students who have chosen similar
colours and they are to discuss their feelings and why.
The aim of this strategy is to get peers engaging with each other, focusing on social and emotional
Advantages Disadvantages
 Enables students to understand how  Some students may not want to share
they are feeling. their emotions with others.
 Students are able to express their  May leave some students feeling
feelings and connect with others that isolated and confused.
are feeling the same.
 Some students may not want to
 Gives them an understanding that they participate as they feel the task is
are not alone. elementary.
Some helpful resources

 https://youthoffthestreets.com.au/
 https://www.youthbeyondblue.com/
 http://www.reach.org.au/
 http://au.reachout.com/
 http://www.bigbrothersbigsisters.org.au/
 www.pcycnsw.org.au/YouthPrograms
 Adolescent Development. n.d. Mind Matters. Retrieved from https://www.mindmatters.edu.au/docs/default-source/learning-module-

 Better Health Channel. (2014). Puberty. Retrieved from https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/puberty

 Board of studies. (2014). PDHPE (Personal Development, Health and Physical Education). New South Wales Education Standards Authority. Retrieved from

 Chua, H., Wong, A. K. W., Shek, D. T. L. (2010). Social development in hong kong: Development issues identified by social development index (SDI). Social
Indicators Research, 95(3), 535-551. Doi: 10.1007/s11205-009-9525-7

 Derose, L. M., Shiyko, M. P., Foster, H., & Brooks-Gunn, J. (2011). Associations between menarcheal timing and behavioral developmental trajectories for girls
from age 6 to age 15. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 40(10), 1329-42. doi:http://dx.doi.org.ezproxy.uws.edu.au/10.1007/s10964-010-9625-3

 Emotional Development. n.d. Retrieved from https://www.kidsmatter.edu.au/mental-health-matters/social-and-emotional-learning/emotional-development

 Encyclopedia of children’s health. (2017). Cognitive Development. Retrieved from http://www.healthofchildren.com/C/Cognitive-Development.html

 Kids Helpline. Transition to high school. Retrieved from https://kidshelpline.com.au/grownups/news-research/teacher-resources/kids-


 Negriff, S., Susman, E. J., & Trickett, P. K. (2011). The developmental pathway from pubertal timing to delinquency and sexual activity from early to late
adolescence. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 40(10), 1343-56. doi: http://dx.doi.org.ezproxy.uws.edu.au/10.1007/s10964-010-9621-7

 Schoper, S.E. (2017). Helping students become self-mentors: Implications of a goal setting assignment. Transformative Dialogues: Teaching & Learning Journal
9(3) 1-5. Retrieved from https://www.kpu.ca/sites/default/files/Transformative%20Dialogues/TD.9.3.4_Schoper_Students_Become_Self-Mentors.pdf

 Social Development. n.d. Retrieved from https://www.kidsmatter.edu.au/mental-health-matters/social-and-emotional-learning/social-development