Activating Social Empathy (ASE) Junior Cycle Resource

ASE is a Junior Cycle SPHE resource that has been approved by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment. It aims to support teachers in addressing learning outcomes relating to listening, respecting and communicating with others, understanding the importance of empathy, and demonstrating empathy skills. In ASE, teachers guide students through a series of interactive activities (e.g., Diamond Nine, walking debate, group discussions), which challenge students to reflect on the importance of empathy and practise their empathy skills.

What do students say about ASE?

“I developed a unique understanding of the term empathy and how critical it is to our daily lives”

“I liked how we got to understand why people act certain ways and how to show empathy to a person that you know very little about”

“It helped me try to understand how other people feel and how to relate to them… I also liked how it helped me understand what to do in situations if I’m not sure”

What do teachers say about ASE?

It hooked me very quickly

 “I love this because it's very immersive, so the kids are really quite involved in doing a lot of stuff. It’s very task based. So it's very well structured

For any teacher it's really easy to follow

“I was actually really impressed by a lot of what was in the programme. I think it's definitely needed in our schools”

“It's definitely going to be an addition to any school

Teacher Manual

The ASE resource is comprised of four individual sessions. Instructions and materials for each ASE session are provided in the Teacher Manual. To access the ASE Teacher Manual please click here

If you wish to access an individual ASE session, please click on the relevant link below:

Session 1 – Understanding Empathy

Session 2 – Developing Empathy Skills

Session 3 – Responding with Empathy

Session 4 – Addressing Barriers to Empathy


ASE is also available in Irish and can be accessed here.

Teacher Feedback

Once you have finished using the ASE resource, we would love to get your feedback. Please click on the link below or follow the QR code to complete a short (2-3 minute) feedback survey. Schools that complete all four ASE sessions and provide feedback can receive a UNESCO Certificate of Completion: