The AIA Experience for Grades 3-8

an Overview

In AIA, students in grades 3-8 learn about and develop their social and emotional skills through a holistically integrated approach. Using a blended delivery model, students acquire SEL skills through a combination of teacher-directed and student-directed learning experiences, using both face-to-face and online learning.

As the authors of their own lives, students engage in meaningful self-discovery and solutions-driven problem-solving to better understand and manage themselves while applying respectful, productive ways to interact with others. Inspired by Nick’s message of hope and love, students learn to leverage their own strengths to be their best selves.

Eleven chapters in all, AIA begins with aPreface where students learn the purpose of AIA while reviewing and practicing essential back-to-school Noble Techniques. These skills equip all students with the tools they need to take ownership of their own success.

“There is an imaginary ladder of your life. There is the bottom which is negative and top section which is positive. And in life you are trying to climb up the ladder (altitude).The better attitude you have the higher you can go to success and happiness.”
- Middle School Student

an Overview

Nick Vujicic officially welcomes students to AIA where they develop the skills, mindsets and literacies to be their best selves in school and in life.

With a focus on theme such as kindness in action,students learn the purpose of AIA while reviewing and practicing essential back-to-school Noble Techniques. These skills equip all students with the tools they need to take ownership of their own success.

The preface chapter concludes with students writing their own back-to-school stories. As the authors of their own lives, students engage in meaningful self-discovery and self-reflection through the power of storytelling.

Explore the Chapters

Chapter 1 - My Bio

Grades 3-5: “My Bio” connects students to the foundational skills, attitudes and self-reflection practices they need as they engage in more rigorous academic, social and emotional experiences, and the responsibilities inherent in the role of student and lifelong learner. Critical components for students include developing self-awareness, and an understanding of who they are and what they like and dislike.  

Students also identify and describe a range of emotions and feelings, and how these are connected to a disposition toward personal, social, and academic success and goal achievement. Throughout this foundational journey of self-awareness and self-management skills, students begin to recognize how family members, peers, school personnel, and community members can support their school success and responsible behavior. 

Grades 6-8: “My Bio” connects students to the skills, attitudes and self-reflective mindsets consistent with developing oneself as a healthy, self-respecting and self-regulating adolescent. Students learn how to analyze life-stressors and apply stress-management techniques to socially and emotionally persevere toward goal achievement.

Students build on self-awareness and self-management skills, and actively self-reflect about personal qualities they want to develop. Students analyze how certain personal qualities can influence the choices they make and thereby,the successes they achieve. Students analyze what school and community opportunities can contribute to their personal, school and future-life goals. They also learn to use these opportunities to continue cultivating self-management skills as they grow into adolescence.

Chapter 2 - Words Matter

Grades 3-5: “Words Matter” builds on students’ foundational self-awareness and self-regulation knowledge and skills.Students continue integrating self-regulation techniques for emotional and behavioral management – self-management. They describe personal skills and interests they want to develop, goal-setting steps and achievement. These skills include ways to overcome predicted and unpredicted obstacles, and age-appropriate, goal-progress monitoring.

Students learn how self-awareness can support their ability to express their feelings and emotions in a socially acceptable way. With this social awareness understanding, students describe ways to begin and maintain friendships. Students also demonstrate ways to work effectively in a variety of group settings, which is a critical skill set for achieving personal, academic and future career success. 

Grades 6-8: “Words Matter” builds on students’ foundational self-awareness and self-regulation knowledge and skills. Students learn to predict others’ feelings and perspectives (social awareness). Students set short-term goals and self-assess their progress and obstacles toward goal achievement (self-management).

Using these developing skills and self-reflective mindsets, students recognize how analysis of one’s own behavior can impact others in a variety of ways. Students specifically analyze how actions, like bullying, based on an individual and group’s cultural and social differences have a negative impact on all students (social awareness). Because of this analysis and recognition of how behaviors can impact others, students develop cooperative teamwork practices (relationship skills).

Chapter 3 - Other Authors

Grades 3-5: “Other Authors” is the first of two chapters for students to develop the skills, attitudes and mindsets to establish and maintain positive relationships – relationship skills. Students, now equipped with a social awareness understanding, recognize the various perspectives, feelings, and other non-verbal cues of others.Students also establish multi-cultural-social habits of mind for respectful and cooperative communication required for healthy interpersonal relationships. 

Grades 6-8: “Other Authors” is the first of two chapters that helps students develop the skills, attitudes and mindsets to establish and maintain positive relationships – relationship skills. Students engage their self-awareness and self-management skills to begin developing social awareness and interpersonal skills. Students analyze the effects of acting to oppose bullying based on individual and group differences and learn to collectively evaluate strategies for preventing and resolving interpersonal conflicts, including bullying conflicts.

Chapter 4 - Communication and Conflicts

Grades 3-5: “Communication and Conflicts” is the second of two chapters that helps students develop the skills, attitudes and mindsets to establish and maintain positive relationships – relationship skills. Students identify causes of conflicts and consequences from unresolved conflicts. Students also learn skills and techniques to constructively resolve conflict. They identify how to engage in effective and productive group collaboration necessary for personal and professional decision-making successes throughout life. 

Grades 6-8: “Communication and Conflicts” is the second of two chapters that helps students develop the skills, attitudes and mindsets to establish and maintain positive relationships – relationship skills. Students develop skills to become a critical receiver of information. Using these skills, they learn to differentiate between healthy and unhealthy peer pressure, and strategies for resisting unhealthy peer pressure.  

Students evaluate how taking others needs into account (social awareness) can have a positive impact on problem-solving, decision-making, and individual,group, school, and societal goal achievement. Students also analyze the need to recognize ethical and safety-factors in both school and societal rules when engaged in the decision-making process.

Chapter 5 - Write the Story You Want to Read

Grades 3-5: “Write the Story You Want to Read”continues to deepen students’ social awareness. Students practice identified skills, attitudes and critical thinking dispositions to demonstrate decision-making skills and responsible behaviors in personal, school and community situations.

Recognizing the importance of personal health, ethical behavior, and self-respect, students learn to demonstrate respectful acts for the rights of others and their knowledge of how social-norms and safety-factors affect decision-making performance. Aware of the essential criteria for problem solving, students also learn to apply systematic decision-making and solutions-oriented approaches for a range of academic and social situations. Students bridge their respect for and awareness of self and others, establishing themselves as democratic citizens actively identifying and performing roles that contribute to the well-being of their school, community and society.

Grades 6-8: “Write the Story You Want to Read” prepares students with the skills, attitudes and critical thinking dispositions to analyze how to use decision-making techniques and personal and social responsibility to improve study habits and overall school performance. Recognizing the importance of personal health, self-respect, respect for others, and avoidance of risky and unethical behaviors, students evaluate potential school and community needs. As productive-contributors, students learn to evaluate their efforts to the address the school and community needs identified and the overall well-being of all those involved.

SEL through PBL: AIA Social Awareness and Action Project

In Chapters 6 – 10, students deepen their understanding of SEL standards and further develop their personal and social SEL skills (i.e., the Noble Techniques), their research skills, their writing skills and their speaking and listening skills through project-based learning.

Working with a team, students:

Overtime, students explore problems and solutions that increase in scope and scale, discovering that they have the power to positive difference makers in the world around them.

Online Resources:

AIA Curriculum is just a click away! As long as teachers and students have access to the internet, they will be able to view appropriate resources using their AIA login credentials:

  • Lesson Plans
  • Student Online Tutorials
  • AIA Journal
  • Teacher Resources
  • Student Handouts
  • Nick Videos

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According to CASEL, every $1 spent on SEL has an economic return of $11. AIA is an investment in educators, children, and the future, with a return of better understanding, more collaboration and a more successful, inclusive learning environment.

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