Strengths Gym

Strengths Gym

A three level course for young people designed to enable students, teachers, and others to learn about, recognise, build upon, and use their character strengths more.

Strengths Gym was developed jointly by psychologist Dr Carmel Proctor and teacher Jenny Fox Eades. Research findings demonstrate significant increase in student life satisfaction and well-being from participation.

What is a strength?

A strength is a way of thinking, feeling, or behaving that is either innate or which has developed early in life. Our strengths are our areas of greatest potential growth, the areas where we will excel. Working on your strengths is always more effective and rewarding than fixing your weaknesses and in order to fix your weaknesses effectively you need to be using your strengths.

One of the key insights of positive psychology is that we get more of what we focus on. This course looks at personal well-being from a positive perspective, providing opportunities to consider prudent and considerate behaviour, a healthy lifestyle, and good relationships. It does this through a focus on the behaviour we do want rather than on the behaviour we don’t want. In particular it allows behaviour to be looked at in the light of the strengths we already possess – and would benefit from using more.

The Course

The course provides a flexible, easy to use lesson format for ease of planning and is designed to encourage intrinsic motivation and satisfaction for students. The course has broad applications outside of education, such as clinical and therapeutic settings, and is suitable for individual and group work. The materials can also be adapted for use with various age groups and abilities. For educators within the United Kingdom, each lesson has links to the PSHE (Personal, Social and Health Education): Personal well-being curriculum.

Each lesson explores one of 24 ubiquitous strengths of character or moral virtues. Each lesson contains Strengths Builders and Strengths Challenge exercises that have been designed for classroom, paired, and solitary work. We have adopted a menu format for the sessions so that you can choose activities that you feel will suit your class and ensure they have a variety of activities over the weeks. At the same time, all the activities will contribute towards a focus on the strength presented in a given session.

Level 1 – Designed to teach the strengths presented and to help students understand their meaning

Level 2 – Students find out more about the strengths and use them themselves

Level 3 – Further development of strengths and a deeper more philosophical understanding of each strength

For ease of use and presentation in the classroom, several features of the course have been placed here online and are to be used in conjunction with the Teachers Manual. The course levels are delivered by teachers and are designed to make learners more aware of their strengths and encourage a positive outlook on life.

Suggestions of Songs, Films, Quiet Moments and Funny Moments, additional student activities, and links to YouTube clips have been provided for each of the 24 character strengths here on the Strengths Gym Teacher’s Manual Additional Content page.

Order Strengths Gym online via Lulu!

Our latest print on demand version of Strengths Gym is available via Lulu.

Check out the Pi Shop!

You can also order our latest print on demand version of Strengths Gym and many other great products via Australia’s Positivity Institute Pi Shop.

UK CD Enclosed Version

US CD Enclosed Version

Strengths Button Badges

Strengths Key Fobs

Strengths Gym Products

One of the key aims of Strengths Gym is for students to become more aware of strengths – in themselves, in other people, and in the world around them. This can lead to increased self-esteem, academic achievement, and ‘prosocial’ behaviour (e.g., better teamwork, improved social skills).

If you are interested in purchasing copies of the Strengths Gym courses, please contact us. If you can provide details on the number of students and your location, we will provide you with a custom quote for the materials and shipping.

Individual books are sold for the following amounts:

  • Education packs (one teacher’s manual and one of each of the student booklets) – £22.00
  • CD enclosed version – £39.95 UK Version
  • CD enclosed version – £29.95 CA/US Version
  • Teacher’s manual – £20.00 (US Version is out of stock)
  • Student booklets – £2.50 each
  • Student Button Badges – please contact us for quote
  • Teacher Key Fobs – please contact us for a quote

Education Packs