Session 2: From Reaction to Response

PSHE (Ages 11-14)
Session 2: From Reaction to Response
Key Messages
  • How can we respond to events like 7/7?
  • How can we respond to difficult events in our own lives?
  • Students will consider the different ways that people may react to events like 7/7
  • Students will discuss how we may move from reactions to positive responses after traumatic events
  • Students will recall the key elements of the last Session – Miriam’s life, 7/7 and their feelings
  • Students will differentiate between reactions and responses
  • Students will suggest how people can move from reactions to responses, from negative to positive, in the face of adversity
  • Students will apply learning to their own lives


  • Students to work in groups (they can be the same groupings as Session 1) to recall the key learning from Session 1.
  • Project Slides 1 and 2 of MV PSHE Resource 2.1 Responding to 7-7 and distribute large sheets of sugar paper. Each group writes bullet points or words about Miriam, about 7/7 and about their feelings about what happened. They could be awarded points for each relevant item they identify. Slide 3: At this point you may wish to replay Miriam's Story videos 1 and 2 to recap learning.
  • Explain that this session we will be exploring possible responses to difficult or traumatic events, using the example of what happened to Miriam and the Hyman family.

Phase 1

  • Project Slide 4 and read the definition. Ask the class which word best fits the definition. You may choose to talk about the definitions of some of the other words before moving on to Slide 5, reproduced in MV PSHE Resource 2.2 Definition match A4 Matching the word to its definition can be done as a class on the IWB or in pairs with feedback using copies of the A4 sheet. Check students’ understanding of the meanings.
  • Project Slide 6, reproduced in MV PSHE Resource 2.3 React respond sheet A4 and hand out copies. In pairs students decide where each word goes on their sheet. This activity could be done as a card sort to involve kinaesthetic learners (MV PSHE Resource 2.4 React respond word sort A4).

Plenary 1

  • Compare students’ answers to the answers on Slide 7. Are they the same or different? Why?

Phase 2

  • MV Resource 0 Info for Students.pdf is a single page summary of Miriam's Vision and its aims. Print and distribute a copy to each student.
  • Slide 7: Show Miriam's Story video 3 of 4. You may wish to show the video more than once.
  • Slide 8: Ask students to identify the reactions / responses that are mentioned, and to explain the process of reaction and response that the Hyman family has gone through.
  • Slide 9: On the back of the sheets of sugar paper, groups make a quick sketch of a bridge. Think of ways that people can “bridge” from negative reactions to positive responses. Write ideas around the bridge. (For instance, how can we move from bitterness to acceptance? From hatred to forgiveness?) Feed back to the class.

Plenary 2

  • You may wish to organise students into a semi-circle so that they can see each other and the board.
  • Slide 10: Show Miriam's Story video 4 of 4.
  • Slides 11
  • Slide 12 (optional): Project the final statement on the board. Ask students to think about the statement on their own; then to share it with their neighbour; and finally to share with the whole class.
  • End by referring to the purpose of the Miriam’s Vision resource and the session’s Focus and Key Messages. There have been positive outcomes to 7/7, although it was a painful and avoidable event. Reiterate that Miriam’s Vision: A Response to the 2005 London Bombings is the Hyman family’s way of trying to help people to make considered choices in difficult circumstances. How can these activities help to do that? (By learning what happened to Miriam and her family and understanding that people have the choice to influence consequences constructively; by applying lessons learned to future personal and wider situations, etc.)
  • Slide 13: Students can choose to share personal experiences or knowledge of negative events that have had positive consequences, or that could have had more positive consequences, and how. This provides opportunities for students to relate the contents of this module to their personal histories and their own lives. Sharing in (non-friendship) pairs can sometimes have surprisingly personal outcomes, and as a whole class students may inspire each other.