London, Sept 7 : With depression hitting kids at a very young age, the British government has come with a unique way to help pupils beat the blues - by offering classes on the 'art of happiness'.
The government is hoping to restore the feel good factor among kids by teaching them how to look on the bright side of life, reports Timesonline.
In the Penn Resiliency Program, imported from the United States, 11-year-olds are to be taught how to shrug off setbacks and banish pessimistic thoughts, helping them to cope with whatever life throws at them.
The scheme has been scientifically tested and shown to produce positive results.
More than 1,500 11-year-olds in 22 schools are already on the courses in a pilot scheme masterminded by one of the world's leading authorities in "positive psychology".
Dr Martin Seligman, a psychologist in Pennsylvania, will meet Hazel Blears, the community's secretary, this week to discuss launching the programme nationally.
In the classes, kids are taught how to deal with difficult situations and emotions, as well as developing attitudes and skills such as assertiveness, decision-making and relaxation.
They are urged not to think or react like Chicken Little, the fabled hen who wrongly feared that the sky was falling in, and instead they are shown how to act positively in seemingly negative situations.
More than 100 teachers from schools in South Tyneside, Hertfordshire and Manchester have travelled to Philadelphia to be taught how to give the 'happiness' lessons.