Personal, Social, Health & Citizenship Education

Personal, Social, Health & Citizenship Education - A Muddle of Mistakes

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– Mental Health & Well-being

Exploring the feelings felt when you make mistakes

  • Write a poem using ‘A Muddle of Mistakes’ as the title (encourage children to explore the feelings felt when they make mistakes).
  • Make a display of children pulling facial expressions that show how they feel when they make mistakes. Go on to explore these feelings so that children realise that what they are feeling is normal and not to be feared but worked through. Once discussed, the children could pull faces that show how we should try to feel about making mistakes if we can learn from them.
  • Freeze frame in a group the phrase 'Making Mistakes. Photograph for a display.
  • Use ' A Muddle of Mistakes’ as the title of a role play or instruct the group that the last line of their role play should be ‘I’ve learnt a lot from making that mistake.”

 Discuss the scenario portrayed and how the mistake was dealt with - was it in a positive of negative way? Could it have been dealt with differently?


  • Ask children to consider a situation in class when they could have offered an idea/answer to a question. Discuss what they might do, as a class, i.e share with the class or avoid for fear of making a mistake. Discuss why they might decide not to share e.g for fear the class may laugh at them or for fear the teacher will get cross with them. (There may be other responses to this question that you will need to respond to in the moment but these reasons for not sharing in class will probably be given.)


Act these situations out with pupil and teacher taking the roles and the rest of the class being instructed to roar with laughter when an answer is given or the teacher scolding the child for getting it wrong.


Discuss with the children if this has ever happened – this discussion should point to the fact that we should never react in this way to others' mistakes and that they have been brave and grown their brains and/or that (hopefully) much of this fear is often in their heads as it has not happened to them.


  • Write an advertisement to sell Fortitude as a friend - why would Fortitude be a good friend to have? (Encourages children to think about his good points and the benefits of owning a Fortitude!)
  • Create a piece of artwork that focuses on the feelings you have when you have made a mistake. You may need to have had a good discussion about mistakes using some of the other ideas detailed in the activity section before exploring this – perhaps a mind map of points made during the discussion could be displayed to support children’s artistic interpretations.