The Scream


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Edvard Munch’s ‘The Scream’ is a great piece of artwork to stimulate Emotion Works discussions for learners already familiar with the cog concepts.

The Scream

Edvard Munch’s ‘The Scream’ is a great piece of artwork to stimulate Emotion Works discussions across different levels of learning. In this example we’re imagining a discussion and follow up work with middle to upper primary or secondary learners who are already familiar with the names and labels relating to the first 5 cogs, and possibly the Intensity and Influences cog too.

We’ve added a wikipedia link in the ‘useful links’ box providing some background information that may be useful.

Some conversation starters and question prompts you could use…

Have learners guess, or tell them the name of the painting – The Scream

Behaviour Cog:

Which of the 3 characters is screaming? How can you tell? What is his face doing? What is he doing with his hands? What noise would his voice be making?

Emotion Word Cog:

Which Emotion Words could describe how he might be feeling? Can you think of a ‘wow’ word for his emotion?

Body Sensations Cog:

What body sensations might he be feeling? How do you know when you’re feeling fear/horror/terror/shock?

How does the colour and texture of the painting add to our understanding of the character’s emotion?

(Intensity Cog):

How strong or ‘intense’ is his feeling? Why do you think that?

Trigger Cog:

Does the painting tell us anything about what might be causing the character to feel this way? (NB – the wikipedia link mentions the possibility of a volcanic eruption)


Why don’t the other characters in the painting seem afraid? (NB – the wikipedia link offers some possible insights into the character being Munch himself, and him feeling tired, ill and anxious)

Regulation Cog:

What do you think might happen? Can you think of a bad outcome? Can you think of a good outcome?