Skills and strategies for more considered choice-making

Skills and strategies for more considered choice-making

During the first half of Choices, practitioners were guided by the materials to help pupils better understand themselves, enabling them to consider what drives and influences their choices and practise necessary skills and strategies. Working with Marcus, the central character in the interactive story, they learned that others and their innermost needs can lead them to make different decisions if such decisions mean satisfying those needs. In particular, pupils learned that those attempting to influence them might have their own agenda or act in self-interest. They often successfully exploit young people’s strong need to belong, using recognition and reward or feigning affection and care to manipulate young people’s choices.

Why is it important to make young people more aware of risk?

Session Seven builds on young people’s knowledge thus far, examining negative influence and the seemingly small steps that can lead to a young person being groomed into risky behaviours. They look at how Marcus is becoming influenced by a group, how they are drawing him to become involved in criminal behaviour, and the distinct process they use to do this – target, test, trap. The purpose of examining Marcus’ situation in this way is to equip young people with the knowledge, skills and strategies to recognise the techniques would-be exploiters use, leaving them better placed to protect themselves against unknowingly making choices that put them and their futures at risk. 

How does this help?

  1. It raises awareness: When young people are taught about the tactics and strategies some might use, they become more aware of potential risks and dangers. They can identify warning signs of exploitative situations, such as undue pressure, flattery, false promises, and coercion.
  2. It enhances judgement: Equipped with this knowledge, young people can make better judgments about their choices and decisions, identifying exploitative situations and avoiding them, thereby minimising the risk of becoming exploited themselves.
  3. It improves resilience: Knowing how to recognise and avoid exploitative situations can also help young people develop resilience. They will be able to cope with any adverse consequences of their decisions and avoid the long-term negative effects of exploitation, such as addiction, depression, and poverty.
  4. It empowers them: knowing how to recognise exploitation tactics can empower young people to stand up against would-be exploiters, take control of their lives and make informed choices that prioritise the wellbeing and long-term success of them and others.

Equipping young people with the knowledge and skills to recognise exploitative tactics can help them become more resilient, informed, and empowered individuals who can better protect themselves against and make informed decisions that lead to positive outcomes. This progression from the story to pupils’ own lives and situations is vital preparation for next week’s session, where they’ll examine one area of threat in greater detail.

To find out more, please get in touch with us at: or here