What is mental wellbeing?
““A state of well-being in which every individual realizes his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.”
World Health Organisation (WHO), 2014
At Stivichall Primary School, we believe that the mental wellbeing of our pupils is key to developing happy, inquisitive learners who are able to face challenges in a positive and proactive way.
As part of our curriculum, we teach the skills children need to develop a growth mindset, focusing on the characteristics of effective learning, for example, perseverance, creativity, concentration and exploration. We model these to the children and give praise when the children are seen to be using them.
Part of our PSHE curriculum is Jigsaw. During these lessons, the children learn techniques to quieten and focus the mind, concentrating on breathing and body awareness. It is hoped that the children are then able to use these skills as a calming technique in moments of stress or worry to help calm them so they can then take positive steps to finding a solution.
Learning Mentor & Counsellor
We have a Learning Mentor at school who offers a range of interventions and support to children if they are struggling with emotional, social or behavioural problems that may affect their ability to learn. We also have a visiting school counsellor to whom children can be referred with parental consent, for individual counselling support.
Self-referral – If children have particular worries over friendships or learning, or are struggling with their emotions, they can complete a self-referral form, available within every classroom, and post this into a ‘zebra’ box. These are monitored by the Learning Mentor, who will then speak to the child and assess what support is needed.
Peaceful reflection in the library
Our school environment has been designed with the aim of supporting children’s wellbeing.
Within each classroom, the reading corners provide spaces for quiet reflection, whilst other areas of the room are designed to stimulate children’s engagement and natural curiosity.
For children who prefer a quiet and calm environment during lunchtimes, we have a variety of rooms available. The library is open to Key Stage 2 pupils each lunch time, and they are able to choose to access this when desired. Accessible from the playground, the Rainbow Room and Art Room provide spaces for children to join quieter, more structured activities.
Connecting with nature in the Peace Garden
Our recently created Golden Mile provides space for children to be active. It can be used freely by the children during break and lunch times, in all weathers, and is also utilized by classes at various points during the day. Children may use it for releasing energy by running round the track, or for quiet reflection, taking a walk in nature.
The Clamber Stack and Trim Trail also provide areas for children to release built up energy, and develop confidence in risk taking within a structured space.
Further space for quiet reflection is provided by the Peace Garden and the Dell; areas which may be used by classes or small groups throughout the day.
Support During Covid-19
Barnardos have set up a See Hear Respond partnership to help children, young people and families cope with the Covid-19 crisis. For information about this, please open the poster here:
If you would like more information about Barnardos work, click on the picture below for a link to their website:
Mental Health & Wellbeing Policy - September 2020