Session 1 on Children’s Emotional Intelligence, which includes healthy skills was carried out using the tool “Snakes and Ladders with Tinku and Tina” a board game designed by Rozan. This game was played with Group 1 aged between 10 – 17 years on 9th October 2015 at ADF offices in F11/1. In total there were 11 children and 7 observers including ADF staff that participated and played the game with the children making the session interactive and fun.

The aim of the game is to create an opportunity for children and adults to sit together and talk about healthy emotional and social skills in a manner, which is simple and fun, yet at the same time helps facilitates positive learning, discussion and communication.

The role of the adults present was to help the children understand the questions and statements they encountered in this game and to encourage them to think about and respond to them. ADF staff playing this game with the children ensured they played a supportive, encouraging and guiding role rather than a prescriptive and critical one. The idea was to encourage children to think about each of the questions and to come up with their own answers through discussion in a comfortable, relaxed and fun environment. At the outset, ADF staff had informed and conveyed to the children that there were no set right or wrong answers to the questions being asked. The only important point was that each child had to ensure he or she provides an answer to each question. If any child refused to answer a question, then the rules of the game would apply which includes a penalty.

The questions and statements touched on 6 areas in a non-formal way, which included:

  • Self Awareness & Self Esteem,
  • Feelings,
  • Social Skills & Communication,
  • Tolerance,
  • Gender
  • Body protection.

The game/tool proved to be extremely helpful and encouraged the children to participate and interact with each other in a friendly and relaxed manner. Every child playing this game became more confident and more relaxed with time. All the children thoroughly enjoyed playing this game and recognized its benefits and usefulness.

Key messages and learning outcomes from this session included:

  • Sense of equality among all the children participants especially on the basis of both gender and class.
  • The children participants learnt about sensitive topics in a child friendly way.
  • Raising self-awareness and self-esteem such as each child is a valuable person and an important person.
  • Children are more aware of their own feelings. Each child is reassured that all feelings are normal and acceptable.
  • Children recognize their own social skills and the power of communication. Respecting other people and being able to stand up for themself without hurting others.
  • All people are important and should be respected because they are human beings.
  • People’s religion, nationality, ethnicity, skin colour, race, money and sex do not make them better or worse than others.
  • People can be different in many ways and still have a lot in common because they are human beings.
  • Boys and girls have some physical differences, but have the same rights.
  • What we can do has to do with our abilities as human beings and not because we are boys or girls.
  • Our bodies have private and special parts that we usually keep covered in front of people.
  • Good touching generally in front of others, such as making you feel good and happy ie hugging, shaking hand, patting etc. Bad touching such as someone hurting you, ie hitting, kicking, punching, pulling, pushing etc.