H.E.A.R.T. Curriculum - Athletes for Hope

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H.E.A.R.T. Curriculum

About H.E.A.R.T.

H.E.A.R.T. stands for hope, education, action, reaching out and teaching. The H.E.A.R.T. Curriculum was created to address children’s mental health by connecting our powerful network of Whole Being Athlete Ambassadors to schools and after-school programs to empower children to identify tools and resources to support their mental health while starting honest conversations about what mental wellness means for kids.

The goals of the H.E.A.R.T. Curriculum include:

  • Increase awareness of mental health tools, identification, and support sources. 
  • Reducing stigma around mental health discussions.
  • Building resilience in students around mental health.
  • Increase knowledge of social-emotional skills, language, and support

How It Works

Currently being offered free to schools, our H.E.A.R.T. Curriculum is a 4-part series of mental health sessions designed to increase education around mental wellness in elementary and middle school age children, grades 3-6. Curriculum sessions will be offered on a monthly basis where one athlete will be paired with a classroom to conduct one 45-minute session, either in-person or virtually- our team will work on a time that works best for the teacher’s/classroom’s schedule. Each session has a consistent, trauma-informed agenda that includes a warm-up activity, a core lesson, a game, and a key takeaway. Sessions in the Curriculum include:

Session 1: All the Feelings Session:

In this session, we focus on emotion identification, alongside promoting acceptance around feelings – especially the difficult or complex ones.

Session 2: Mind the Movement Session:

In this session, we focus on identifying how physical and emotional feelings are connected, and how we can use physical cues to support mental health.

Session 3: My Community and Me:

This session explores how healthy relationships can support our mental wellness, and how we can grow and foster those relationships.

Session 4: S.O.S. (Supporting Our Selves):

This session will focus on fostering self-regulation during difficult, overwhelming, or frustrating experiences.

Each core lesson will also include supplemental activities such as videos, worksheets, activities or games to support each session takeaway.

The Game Plan

The H.E.A.R.T Curriculum will be rolled out in Spring 2023 in classrooms across the United States. Our goal is to expand the training into the summer months with a plan to facilitate classes again in the fall of 2023.

If you are an athlete who is interested in H.E.A.R.T. Curriculum training this summer or a teacher interested in bringing this program to your school, please email Denise Kamyuka at dkamyuka@athletesforhope.org.

H.E.A.R.T. Mental Health Team Talk

AFH has developed a short 30-45 minute mental health team talk to engage teams of athletes in a larger mental health discussion.

Mental Health Team Talk goals:

  • To help teams create an environment in which athletes, trainers, coaches, and supporters can communicate with vulnerability, honesty, and empathy with each other; 
  • To create a safe space for inter-team support;
  • Build resiliency among athletes; and
  • Reduce the stigma around talking about mental health.

 If you are interested in having a Mental Health Team Talk with your sports team, please contact us here or email Suzanne Potts at spotts@athletesforhope.org or Denise Kamyuka at dkamyuka@athletesforhope.org.