At St Mary’s, we are committed to supporting the mental health and wellbeing of our students and staff. Our culture is supportive, caring, and respectful and runs alongside our school values of ‘Love, Strength & Faith’. We encourage students to be open and we want each student to have their voice heard. We know that everyone experiences different life challenges, and that each of us may need help to cope with them sometimes. We understand that anyone and everyone may need additional emotional support and recognise that positive mental health is everybody’s responsibility. If you have any questions/need support with your child's, or your own wellbeing, please get in contact in confidence with our Mental Health First Aider, Kay Carpenter, via email@example.com
On Wednesday 14th October 2020, we all paused our usual timetables to have a whole-school Wellbeing Day! Each class took part in four different activities across the day. We learnt First Aid: from what to do when someone is choking to what we can do if someone bangs their head. We explored Healthy Eating and what it means to have a balanced diet, learning about the different food groups. A vote was held on the least favourite vegetable (quite a heated topic as I'm sure you can imagine) before watching some fun recipe ideas based on these vegetables. Our next topic was Mental Health and how diversity and differences can affect how people see themselves. We spoke about how we should be accepting and including of all people and show interest in learning about different cultures as we would never want others to feel left out for just being who they are!
Lastly, we played some Wellbeing and Mindfulness games, exploring how compliments can make us feel and thinking about all the things we should be grateful for, even in these tricky times. On top of all these amazing activities, time was spent outside in nature by all the children and lunch was covered so that the staff had a well-deserved longer lunch break. Days like this are always fun and inspiring; the children are always so reflective and really understand the importance of Wellbeing for all.
IMPACT & KNOWLEDGE GAINED: The children learnt some basic First Aid and are now able to talk about the importance of helping others. They can now talk about having a balanced diet and how this impacts on their wellbeing as well as their physical health. We explored diversity and mental health which allowed the children to learn about different cultures and how we should be inclusive towards all people.
On Thursday 24th September 2020, the whole school paused to explore and celebrate wellbeing. We started by wearing our slippers to school to help us feel relaxed and comfortable! In the morning, each class took part in four different activities to learn different ways to look after themselves and their wellbeing. This included taking part in different mindfulness activities, which the children can do themselves at home to relax; learning about how to look after our bodies by making sure we are eating healthily; practising different elements of First Aid, such as ‘Dr ABC’ and how to help blood flow back to our hearts when we are hurt and lastly, joining in with different sensory activities to help focus our brains and connect with our bodies. We then spent a chilly afternoon at Forest School, which helps with wellbeing through building relationships, talking with others and allowing our brains to stop and focus on one thing at a time - the amazing setting and fresh air helps too! Please see the Forest School page on our website for more information about what everyone got up to! It was great to have so many grown-ups join us at the woods yesterday and thank you for being so helpful to all the children. What a fantastic day to remind us of the importance of our wellbeing, particularly at such a busy time of year!
IMPACT & KNOWLEDGE GAINED: Highlighting the importance of wellbeing ensures a broad enhancement of the pupils’ moral and social development. It has built on the children’s knowledge of how to eat healthily and also that their mental health is just as important as their physical health. The pupils now have a range of strategies available to them and are aware of how to be safe, how to figure out what their feelings might be telling them and the importance of their relationships with others.