SPARKLERS / Managing emotions

Emotions in Motion

A video-making activity for senior tamariki to learn about managing big emotions, and teach others to too.
Connections with the NZ Curriculum and Mental Health Education Guide (learn more)

Learning outcomes

Tamariki understand how to manage 'big' emotions and the importance of doing this for our wellbeing.

Tāngia ēnei tohutohu – Print me

You will need to print each group a set of Emotions in Motion worksheets.

He aha ai? – Why we love it

This activity helps tamariki learn about managing big emotions such as anger and worries or anxiety.

It will also endorse strategies your school may already be using to help tamariki manage big emotions, empowering them to know what to do when big emotions take hold and enabling them to support others with their big emotions too.


Let tamariki know that sometimes emotions can be big and tricky to manage. Ask them for some examples of these types of emotions e.g. disappointment, sadness, anger, worry.

Say you’ve been looking into finding some good resources to help, including some YouTube clips (we actually have!) and there are some great and awful examples of how to manage big emotions. You think they could create much better ones - that’s the aim of this activity! Emotions in Motion - Pictures, that is!

Let tamariki know that the best way to ‘design’ great videos is to plan them. Give each student a worksheet

  • Explain you’ve noticed some of the younger tamariki at school sometimes struggle with big emotions – your students may have noticed this too.
  • The students may also be able to reflect on how they ‘used to’ behave when they were frustrated, worried or angry.
  • So the video is for junior tamariki – this is their AUDIENCE.
  • The video needs to include strategies that help younger tamariki manage big emotions, rather than just be about a big emotion!

Hei mahi - What to do

Ask tamariki to create small working groups and choose an emotion they want to focus on. Rather than lots of videos about anger, encourage students to think about the deeper emotions that sometimes underpin angry reactions such as: feeling jealousy, lonely, sad or embarrassed.

It’s important tamariki use their strengths to get their video completed – some will be good script writers, some may want to be actors or narrators and they all might want to take turns directing. Because their film ‘crew’ is small they will probably need to play more than one role – which is often how it is in small budget films!

An important choice is the style of video they want to create - some examples are: animation, talk to camera, interviews, humorous, picture videos, puppets – let their imagination lead the way!

Let tamariki know that their worksheet storyboard depicts each camera ‘shot’. It’s important this is marked out so tamariki keep organised, on task and remember props and costumes they may need to make or bring along.

Tamariki can use whatever recording equipment you have available – iPads will work fine and generally tamariki are very used to the video editing apps available.

What next?

If tamariki agree, we suggest you celebrate the videos – invite parents and the principal in, share them over the next few assemblies, add them to your school website, share them with whānau using Seesaw or however you communicate digitally.

Oh, and we would especially love to see their Emotions in Motion - contact us directly!

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