This week’s Junior and Senior assemblies topics were all about well-being and looking after your mental health. The Junior assembly led by Mr Teague and the Senior assembly led by Miss Higgin and Miss Dunlop talked about the importance of practising habits that can help you to stay on top of your mental health.
Pupils gave examples of things that make them happy in their day to day lives e.g. playing with friends, a good meal, going to school, their favourite physical activity and more. They also discussed things that can cause them stress or an upset, e.g. not understanding homework, family arguments, worrying when they know they have done something wrong etc. Teachers then used different coloured juice and an empty glass jar to demonstrate to pupils how these thoughts and feelings can take up space in their brain. If there are too many negative thoughts in your brain, there will not be enough space for happy thoughts. So it is important to find ways to release these negative thoughts to allow more room for positivity.
Pupils also learnt about some of the things they can do that will allow them to develop, learn and cope with stresses. These ‘8 ways to wellbeing’ were as follows:
Talking - being open with people they trust about how they are feeling.
Exercising - looking after their body by playing sport and eating healthy.
Calming - trying meditation or creating good sleep habits.
Learning - e.g. a new skill is a great way to gain confidence.
Relating - spending time with the people that they care about.
Contributing - helping others or contributing to causes they believe in.
Creating - expressing themselves creatively e.g. music, art, drama, writing.
Congratulating - being kind to themselves, or listing the qualities they value themselves.
They also were reminded of the best people they can speak to at school if they are feeling overwhelmed, for example, their teacher, an independent listener, the school counselor, or if they are a boarder one of their boarding parents.
The World Health Organisation recognises World Mental Health Day on 10 October every year. This year's theme set by the World Federation for Mental Health is 'Mental Health in an Unequal World'. Because access to mental health support is still too often determined by where we live or who we are. Often support for mental health issues is shared disproportionately and those not receiving the help and care they require are often from racialised communities, young people, and people living in poverty.
For more information or resources, take a look at the following websites: