Miss Jackson and Miss Wright are our schools Mental Health Champions!
The aim of teaching our pupils about mental health and wellbeing is to give them the information that they need to make good decisions about their own health and wellbeing. It should enable them to recognise what is normal and what is an issue in themselves and others and, when issues arise, know how to seek support as early as possible from appropriate sources.
Physical health and mental wellbeing are interlinked, and it is important that our pupils understand that good physical health contributes to good mental wellbeing, and vice versa.
By the end of Y6 our pupils will have clear understanding that mental wellbeing is a normal part of daily life, in the same way as physical health.
This starts with pupils at ISP being taught about the benefits and importance of daily exercise, good nutrition and sufficient sleep, and giving our children the language and knowledge to understand the normal range of emotions that everyone experiences. This in turn, should enable pupils to articulate how they are feeling, develop the language to talk about their bodies, health and emotions and judge whether what they are feeling and how they are behaving is appropriate and proportionate for the situations that they experience.
Our staff also talk about the steps pupils can take to protect and support their own and others’ health and wellbeing, including simple self-care techniques, personal hygiene, prevention of health and wellbeing problems and basic first aid. Emphasis is given to the positive two-way relationship between good physical health and good mental wellbeing, and the benefits to mental wellbeing of physical exercise and time spent outdoors.
We discuss and teach our pupils the benefits of hobbies, interests and participation in their own communities. It is clear that the children realise that people are social beings and that spending time with others, taking opportunities to consider the needs of others and practising service to others, including in organised and structured activities and groups (for example the scouts or girl guide movements), are beneficial for health and wellbeing.
We link our wellbeing to our Computing curriculum and children are taught about the benefits of rationing time spent online and the risks of excessive use of electronic devices. In later primary school years at ISP, pupils are taught why social media, computer games and online gaming have age restrictions and should be equipped to manage common difficulties encountered online.
A firm foundation in the benefits and characteristics of good health and wellbeing enables us to talk about isolation, loneliness, unhappiness, bullying and the negative impact of poor health and wellbeing.
Mental health and wellbeing are an extremely important aspect to school life here at ISP. We want a school community which nurtures and gives our pupils the best understanding of this from a young age and encourage them all to talk and share these feelings.
Each class at ISP has been given a rainbow and jar to display in their classrooms. Children can then use the jar to add any worries they may have and might want to discuss with a trusted adult in their class. They may also add the worry to feel a weight has been lifted but they dont want to discuss any further. We take the children's lead with this.
Each term, every class is sent an activity from the Mental Health Champions to complete with their classes. For this terms activity, we have asked the children to go and explore outdoors whilst taking part in a Nature Hunt. Please some images below of previous outdoor Well-being Wednesday activities..
'Wellbeing Wednesday' is something the children at ISP really enjoy. Twice a month, the children take part in different activities which promote a positive mental health and their wellbeing. Our children really look forward to these sessions; they work with others they wouldn't usually be drawn to which in turn give everyone more confidence, they openly share how they are feeling with the class and have very mature and grown up discussions about their wellbeing and mental health all whilst partaking in a range of fun activities. We really see a positive difference in our children after these sessions.