USE "I" STATEMENTS 3.4
Goal: To improve skills for expressing feelings
Objective(s): The student will use "I" statements while expressing feelings.
1. Identify and name how you are feeling.
2. Think about what made you feel like this.
3. Decide who to talk to and when.
4. Say "I feel ...... when you ....." or "I feel ..... because ....."
Definition: Using an "I" statement means beginning your sentence with "I feel" as in skill step #4.
Rationale: Telling someone your feelings with an "I" statement facilitates ownership of the problem. It is a non-threatening way of communicating.
• Describe what an "I" statement is. Discuss when, where, why a person would use an "I" statement.
• Discuss the importance of knowing what a person thinks and feels. Stress that "I" statements are generally perceived as much less threatening than comments that begin with the word "you".
Model/Role-play with Feedback
Role play situations:
• A teacher asks why you look so sad.
• Your brother just moved out.
• Your new bike was just stolen.
• You forgot about your mother's birthday.
• A good friend is moving out of town.
• You couldn't get the new shoes you really needed.
• Your girlfriend/boyfriend just called to cancel a date.
• Make a matching game where the student has to match "I" statements to the appropriate situation.
Application with Feedback
• Give students cards with situations on it, (i.e. Johnny just called Billy "stupid") and have students make "I" statements specific to the situation.
• Give students phrases to translate to "I" statements.
• Play mad, sad, glad game using "I" statements to define feelings.
• Utilize journal writing to record feelings in "I" statements.
• When the students are upset, prompt them to use "I" statements.
• Home note: Explain objective and process steps. Parents and student identify use of "I" statements by student at home.