Grief Packet

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GRIEF ACTIVITIESRESOURCES FOR INDIVIDUALS, FAMILIES AND GROUPS

Transcript of Grief Packet

  • A Compilation of Grief Activities for Individuals and Groups 1

    Elizabeth Mahaney, M.A. www.SouthTampaTherapy.com

    GRIEF ACTIVITIES

    RESOURCES FOR INDIVIDUALS, FAMILIES AND GROUPS

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    TABLE OF CONTENTS INTRODUCTION WELCOME AND GROUP NAME NEEDS AND EXPECTATIONS FOR A GRIEF GROUP ROLE OF GROUP FACILITATOR SETTING UP THE GROUP SCREENING STUDENTS GROUP STRUCTURE/AGENDA CURRICULUM SECTION I: TEEN ACTIVITIES SECTION 2: HANDOUTS FOR TEENS SECTION 3: HANDOUTS FOR COUNSELORS AND PARENTS SECTION 4: MORE ACTIVITIES By Elizabeth Mahaney, M.A. Change is Natural Creative Group Coloring Project Feelings Can Be Felt In Our Bodies Feelings Funerals Getting To Know One Another Highest Hopes Deepest Fears Life Cycle Loss Memory Box People Change Someone I Love Died The Things I Sometimes Wonder About

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    INTRODUCTION This curriculum is presented as a work manual for the counselors facilitating grief groups and members. This manual assists grief groups with structured didactic activities to choose from. It is a compilation of activities and handouts that are meant to be used, copied, added to, or discarded according to preferences. Most simply it is a sample grief group program with suggestions for organization of each group meeting. There are introductory sections on setting up and running a group followed by the eight-week curriculum completed by the appendices of activities and handouts.

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    NEED AND EXPECTATIONS FOR A GRIEF GROUP

    Our Group name _______________________________ This is A group! We come together to name our group and to make our PLACE and

    journey together special and unique. The goal 4 success of our group is up to us. We have the opportunity to share within this group which includes being open with one

    another. What we wish to achieve is HOPE . Through expressing our feelings, hopes,

    and dreams, we may allow ourselves to know and be known by others. Friendship and

    self-awareness are our rewards. We will respect the privacy of members by keeping

    group discussions within our group. What we see, say, and hear let it stay in this

    special Place. There are only a few rules for our group: *no side conversations and *we

    must be kind to one another.

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    ROLE OF GROUP FACILITATOR I understand the role of facilitator to be the provider of a safe place for the grief work to occur. It is based on the premise that each person has an innate understanding of the work he or she needs to do. Members will become expert on their grief. When they feel safe, the work that needs to be done is done. All the group rules, which I like to let the group generate, are rooted in the idea of safety: confidentiality, not interrupting, listening, etc. The facilitator starts and ends the group and helps the group to regulate discussion, keeping strong members from dominating and bringing out quieter ones, with their permission. Facilitators also give members permission to not share before they are ready. These structural components are an important part of the members feeling safe. SETTING UP THE GROUP Factors to consider before starting: The number of weeks for the group including start and end dates. Co-facilitators and volunteers. The number of members. Location of group: privacy, same room for all groups, table for activities. Materials available. Consider having a folder for each student to keep any activities in. At the last group these memory Packets will be returned to the members. SCREENING This serves at least two important purposes: 1. It educates about the group rules and purposes. 2. Building the relationship and the strength of the group. Ask members to fill out the Grief Group questionnaire or similar instrument. GROUP STRUCTURE/AGENDA An agenda with activities is helpful but the best groups are often those where, when we are following what is going on for the group, we forget about the agenda. Each group in this curriculum will have the following components: 1. A theme with tools to be learned. 2. An opening ritual. This may be only your way of starting the group, which becomes expected and therefore ritual. (Our Circle Introduction and Candle Lighting) 3. One or more activities. 4. Handouts. 5. Closing ritual. (Blowing Out The Candle)

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    One: Theme(s): Ice-breaking, introductions, group norm building. Opening: Brief intros, develop rules, invitation to share. Activity1: Move; Talking stick. Activity2: What got me here; Question basket. Handout: Normal Grieving, Physical Effects. Closing: Re-invite sharing, review handout, ask about what helps (see introduction). Two: Theme(s): Getting to know each other, memory building. Opening: Review what helps from last week, Invitation to share, memory mural. Activity: Choose from My Story, What do You Need? &/or Question Basket. Handout: Bill of Rights for Teens Experiencing Grief, Common Myths About Grief. Closing: Review handouts, remind to bring sharing, what are you going to do to take care of you? Three: Theme: Family and other changes since the death. Opening: Review what you did to help, Memory Mural, and Invitation to share. Activity: Choose from What do you need (if not done last week)? Timeline, Writing letters to Parents, What has changed in your life, Rough Mountain Smooth Mountain. Handout: Conquering Depression. Closing: As above. Four: Theme: Follow-up on Family changes, Feelings. Opening: Review homework, memory mural. Activity: Choose from Four Feelings, Anger Circle, I miss you most &/or Collage. Handout: Words of Feelings. Closing: As above. Five: Theme: This is a transitional group: either continue with last week (Feelings) or begin Coping. Opening: As above. Activity: Continue with feeling activities &/or Faces, Garbage in Garbage out, Light Hearted Personality Profile, Unpack grief Bundle. Handout: How to help grieving people. Closing: as above, remind how many meetings left.

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    Six: Theme: Tools. Opening: As above; remind number of weeks left. Activity: Choose from Question Basket, Shield, Dear Aunt Blabby, &/or Future Fears. Handout: Strategies for Coping, Good-bye Letter (from Activity List). Closing: as above. Seven: Theme: Good-byes. Opening: As above. Activity: Forgiveness Circle, Memorial Activity. Handout: Establishing realistic expectations for your grief. Closing: Discuss favorite snack (if doing this). Eight: Theme: Good-byes. Opening: As above, review. Activity: Memorial Activity, Favorite snack, Momentos to share. Handout: Memory books. Closing: Rose Petals.

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    SECTION I: TEEN ACTIVITIES 1.1 CHAIN OF EVENTS 1.2 CLAY ACTIVITY 1.3 COLLAGE 1.4 COLOR YOUR HEART 1.5 DEAR AUNT BLABBY 1.6 FACES 1.7 FEELINGS AND COLORS 1.8 FORGIVENESS CIRCLE 1.9 FOUR FEELINGS 1.10 FUTURE FEARS 1.11 GARBAGE IN . . . GARBAGE OUT . . . 1.12 HOW DO YOU FEEL TODAY? 1.13 I MISS YOU MOST WHEN . . . 1.14 JOURNALS FOR THE WEEK 1.15 KLEENEX TOSS 1.16 LETTER TO THE DECEASED 1.17 LIGHT-HEARTED PERSONALITY PROFILE 1.18 MEMORIAL ACTIVITY 1.19 MEMORIAL QUILT 1.20 MEMORIES 1.21 MEMORIES II 1.22 MEMORY MURAL 1.23 MOVE 1.23b MY STORY 1.24 NOW AND THEN 1.25 QUESTION BASKET 1.26 QUESTION BASKET SAMPLES 1.27 ROSE PETALS: CLOSING RITUAL 1.28 ROUGH MOUNTAIN, SMOOTH MOUNTAIN 1.29 SHIELD 1.30 TIMELINE 1.31 THE TIMES OF MY LIFE 1.32 TALKING STICK 1.33 THANKFUL ALPHABET THOUGHTS 1.34 TOMBSTONE ACTIVITY 1.35 THE UNGAME 1.36 UNPACK YOUR GRIEF BUNDLE 1.37 VICTIMS DONT HEAL! 1.38 WHAT DO YOU NEED? 1.39 WHAT GOT ME HERE? 1.40 WHAT HAS CHANGED IN YOUR LIFE? 1.41 WHERE ARE YOU? 1.42 WRITING LETTERS TO PARENTS

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    CHAIN OF EVENTS Age Level: All Time Required: Flexible Materials Needed: Scissors, tape, staples or glue sticks Construction paper cut into 8 x 1 strips Crayons or markers Goal: 1. To reconstruct a series of events around a certain aspect of the death. For example, the events leading up to the disclosure of an illness, or the events of the funeral and its preparation. 2. As a variation, to link group participants names with their names of deceased loved ones and each other. Our heart connection is made symbolically visible. Description of Activity: 1. Each child cuts number of strips of construction paper. 2. On each strip they write an event and/or its corresponding feeling. For example, the first strip might say: Daddy never feels well anymore. The second strip might be: Mom took daddy to the doctor, everyone is telling secrets, etc. 3. Strips are then glued, taped or stapled into rings to form a chain of events. 4. Discussion should then center on feelings that happened during that time frame. Teen Talk, Good Samaritan Hospice Taken from Bereavement Magazine, Nov/Dec, 1994 1-1

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    LIGHTHEARTED PERSONALITY PROFILE

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    JOURNALING How To Start

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    There is no right way or wrong way to keep a journal. Keeping a journal is easy. You just need paper, or a notebook and a comfortable pen or colored markers or you can use the computer. Here are some tips to get you started. * Write when you have uninterrupted time * Write for about fifteen to twenty minutes daily * Use a comfortable writing tool * Choose a comfortable place to write * Try to write at the same time everyday * Date your entries * Don't judge your writing. Don't worry about grammar, spelling, punctuation or sounding "just right." The point is to write about what's on your mind and in your heart. * Accept your writing and write from within. Don't be a critic. * Don't try to write a story or a novel * Trust your intuitive heart, the words will come * Be gentle with yourself * As you begin to write close your eyes and take a moment to get centered * Begin with a deep breath * If you get stuck begin doodling and see where that takes you * Experiment, play, be open to where your heart takes you in your writing Journal Topics For Grief * Write a letter to your special someone who has died. * Write about a special memory of your special someone. * Write about what you wish you'd done or not done. * Write about the things you wish you'd said or not said. * Write about what you miss most about your special someone. * Write about an alter or memorial you can design for your special someone and then create it.

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    CHANGE IS NATURAL

    Change is natural and occurs throughout our lives. Can you think of any changes that have happened in your life? You can draw or color some of these changes below or on a separate sheet of paper. Creating a project may also be useful to explain how change appears to you. ________________________________________________________________________ EGG ________________________________________________________________________ CATERPILLAR ________________________________________________________________________ COCOON ________________________________________________________________________ BUTTERFLY

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    CREATIVE GROUP COLORING PROJECT

    Sometimes in our lives it is important for us to accept help from others and rely on friends and family members for help to overcome obstacles and be successful. For example; if one person tries to build a house all alone, there is a lot of work to be done and it is a very difficult job! If a whole team works together and pitches in, a house can be built much easier and in less time. Each member of our group is a part of a puzzle and may offer different talents and skills to use in building the big picture. In this project each member of our group is part of a team that can make a big project easier and each person can contribute his or her own skills to create the big picture. OBJECTIVE For each group member to contribute to the group project and work together as a team to finish the final product. MATERIALS At least twelve different colored markers or other art supplies A large sheet of paper Group size: 4-12 DIRECTIONS Ask the group to decide how to determine which color each person should use. Each member gets a different colored marker or art supply. This will be the only color that they will use (No Sharing). For smaller groups each member may get more than one color. The group will create a picture using all of the colors. Example: A member with a brown color may choose to make the trunk of a tree and the person with the green could make the leaves. This project can be silly or serious depending on how the members choose to use the markers or art supplies. (A coloring book page could be used as an alternative). DISCUSSION

    1. Was this difficult for the group? Why? Why Not? 2. How did you work as a group to complete the task? 3. Is everyone happy with the project? Why or why not? 4. Is it easier to do things by yourself or with others? 5. Why is it important to be able to work together as a team?

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    FEELINGS CAN BE FELT IN OUR BODIES

    Where do you feel feelings in your body? Color in the chart below and match a color with your feelings. Then color the picture to tell you where you feel different feelings.

    FEELING____________=COLOR_______________

    FEELING____________=COLOR_______________

    FEELING____________=COLOR_______________

    FEELING____________=COLOR_______________

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    FEELINGS We all have different feelings and it this is OK. Feelings changeCan you draw some different faces that show some of your feelings?

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    FUNERALS

    A funeral service is when friends and family get together to honor a loved one who has passed away or died. This is only one of the many things that we can do to say goodbye. Funerals help us to understand that a person has died and that we will be going through some changes because of the emotions of loss that we feel. It can be very hard to say goodbye to someone you love. Sometimes it helps to think of funerals as a celebration of your loved ones life and to think of all the good things about the person who died. This doesnt make it easier and it is ok to feel the way you feel. Can you draw or write something about the good things?

    Now can you draw something about how you feel?

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    Getting to know one another

    Breaking the Ice

    This exercise will help each group member to learn more about one another. If we are strangers at this moment, we wont be unfamiliar with one another after we participate in this activity. If we do happen to know members of our group now, we just might find out something new about one another. Questions will be asked. Member can answer the questions one at a time around a circle. (Remember: members may choose to pass on a question at any time; if they would like more time to think about the question or if they would simply like to pass) It is important for all participants to listen to each others response. We are all essential pieces of this group and let us keep in mind that each of us is unique and a vital element of our puzzle.

    *Cut out each question, put in a container and let each member choose a piece of the puzzle* What is the best movie that you have seen lately? What is your favorite movie? What type of music do you like? What is your favorite song? If you could be an animal, what would you be, and why? What was the best day of your life? What is your earliest memory? What is your biggest worry? What would you like to be doing five years from now? If you won $5,000, what would you do with it? What is one thing you dont like about being in group? Whats one thing you do like about being in this group? One of the things people like most about me is? One of the things people like least about me is?

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    My favorite singer is? My favorite actor is? My favorite athlete is? My favorite season isbecause? The person in our group who I think enjoys life the most is? If all members of our group were stranded on a deserted island, I would choose; ..to be the leader. ..to be the peace keeper. ..to be the home maker. The group member that I learned most about was.? The person in our group that I would like to get to know better is? What I would like to learn more about in this group would be? MORE QUESTIONS Ask each member to write down three questions that he or she would like to know about individuals in the group.

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    Highest Hopes, Deepest Fears

    Cohesion and Empathy

    (If there is a need for helpful internalization, ask members to be themselves or use animals to represent themselves and what their interests are.( Use art, writings, drawings, or any source of

    creativity to visualize the image(s) )

    Each person completes the Highest Hopes, Deepest Fears worksheet/ activity

    independently.

    After each member finishes the worksheet/activity, members are paired up. While

    members are paired they explain their worksheet to their partner. The group then comes

    together. The group members share their partners worksheet and responses to the rest of

    our group. Positive feedback is then given to each participant.

    *It is important to explain what the definition of positive feedback means and to discuss examples. *Let us encourage partners and group members to question and explore one anothers responses. *Comment on shared responses. *Comment on the understandings of members views or perspectives. (What it means to put our self in another persons shoes) This exercise may build a sense of belonging to the group, especially when personal information is shared with other members. This exercise also helps members practice empathic skills while sharing their partners responses to the worksheet.

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    HIGHEST HOPES (4)

    DEEPEST FEARS (4)

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    LOSS Objective:

    1. Identify personal losses and share them with the group. 2. Gain an understanding of the grieving process. 3. Discuss the progressions of the loss cycle and identify the stage they believe they

    are in now. 4. Reframe loss experiences, comprehend, and normalize reactions to loss. 5. Begin or continue to process personal losses. 6. Identify factors that may be contributing to feelings of depression.

    Materials: 1. White board or poster board with a marker. 2. A copy of this hand out.

    Each member of our group will get a chance to share about if and when they may have experienced a loss and felt sad. Members responses will be written down as they share, somewhere they can view them. Some examples include:

    A loved one died. A friend moved away. Divorce. A love relationship ended. Conflict between a friend or loved one. Pet died. A brother or sister left home. Any type of move. A car wreck. Loss of a job. Girlfriend or boyfriend cheated. Loss due to injury.

    These are examples of losses. Sometimes depression may be the result of some losses. Think about the losses in your life. These losses may be old and resolved or new and unexplored. Sometimes losses come to mind during significant periods of our lives such as birthdays, holidays, or special occasions. Now, could we share some of our losses with one another? (Could a group member write the responses where we can all see them?) After responses are written lets look at the cycle of loss on the following page and discuss some questions (you can write your responses down if you like)

    1. What would you guess is the most usual response or the first feeling you have to a loss?

    Answer:

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    2. Did any of you react to your loss, as if you just couldnt believe it? Answer: 3. Can you think of a time when you thought about bartering in reaction to your

    loss? (Example: Wait! What if I could have somehow stopped a loved one from dying?)

    Answer: 4. What reaction might follow a period of bartering? Answer: 5. Who would you be angry with? (Example: God, self, others) Answer: 6. Does anyone want to share anything about the loss cycle or where you think you

    are in the cycle? Answer:

    It is important to know that people do not just click through the loss cycle without glitches. We usually do not just move from stage 1 to stage 2 to stage 3 etc. We tend to bounce around a bit. For example, it is not unusual to be on the up side of the cycle (the acceptance stage) when denial is reactivated (this cant be true!). If you chose to share, thank you! If not, thats O.K. too! Sometimes it helps people to begin to heal by talking about their losses as well as listening to others share their stories or experiences of losses.

    Any Thoughts, Reactions or Notes

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    Memory Box

    A memory box is a great way to remember thoughts, feelings, and special

    memories about the person you have lost. This is your special box for holding memories.

    The items that you choose to put in this box are up to you. Looking through your memory

    box can help you feel close to your loved one once again.

    You can make it out of any type of container that you choose. Once you have a box,

    you can decorate it how you like. Here are a few ideas:

    Write the persons name on it or include the persons name inside the box.

    Use glitter glue, markers, crayons, or colored pencils to draw things that may

    remind of your loved one.

    Draw a picture of this person.

    Use stickers.

    Glue a photo of the person you lost on the box.

    After you decorate your box you can put items and little drawings or notes in Your

    Special Memory Box.

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    PEOPLE CHANGE People change over time and this is a natural occurrence. Imagine how life would be if we did not changeCan you try to draw a picture of yourself and other things that you would like as a BABY, as you are NOW, and as A LOT OLDER? BABY * NOW * A LOT OLDER

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    SOMEONE I LOVE DIED Someone I love passed away and died. _______________ was a special person in my life

    because

    ________________________________________________________________________

    ________________________________________________________________________

    ________________________________________________________________________

    ________________________________________________________________________

    ________________________________________Here is my drawing of_____________:

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    THE THINGS I SOMETIMES WONDER ABOUT

    There are things that I sometimes wonder about. When I wonder about these things I would like to ask questions. For example; many people wonder about what happens when a loved one dies. Some people believe that these people have a soul or spirit that may go to heaven. Others think that a persons soul or spirit changes and becomes another living thing like how a caterpillar becomes a butterfly. What do you think? Draw, color, or write about some of your wonders.