From the Base
Thoughts, comments, ideas and pause for thought from members of our school and extended community.
The Pilgrims' community - good mental health
A few months ago we focused on Children's Mental Health Awareness Week. For the last few years we have chosen that week to be our opportunity to ensure the message is child centred, accessible to students and parents alike.
Last week I spoke about resilience. This week, Mr Cuyler has expanded further on this idea.
I thought it might be helpful for you know some initiatives going on within the school to help develop the pupils' wellbeing, self-regulation, personal growth and happiness.
When my children were young my wife and I, when they were really annoying us, would say, 'They might be devils at home but at least they are angels at school.' I don't think they were ever angels, but they knew their pleases and thank yous, always behaved and didn't speak out of turn. And so do many children.
In an especially touching lesson with Year 3 this week, we discussed having a pet and what you have to do to look after one. The boys spoke passionately about their love of animals, from dogs and cats to ducks and rabbits. One of the points of the lesson was to introduce the concept of loss and how it might make someone feel, how to talk about it, and what it all means. Tricky but worthy stuff.
Is talking all it's cracked up to be?
When things are tough, we're encouraged to talk about it. Got a problem? Open up. Feeling rubbish? Call a friend. Struggling with life? See a therapist.
Question is, does it help? Well, depends on who you talk to - but often the answer is based on someone's own experience.
The Power of Gratitude
“Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson
There is a stillness early in the mornings, especially in Spring and Summer. Those quiet moments just before dawn, when life is waking up (not the teenagers in my household though). The only times I've seen a fox have been then, and many hedgehogs and quite a few other creatures. If I'm lucky and in the garden, I will have a cup of tea with me.
During Children's Mental Health Awareness Week, I did some work with Y6-8 entitled the 'Cognitive Triangle'. At its heart it is based on:
THOUGHT leads to FEELINGS leads to BEHAVIOUR
One of the hardest things I've ever had to do as a parent is ask for help. The idea of admitting that I was failing, that I was not doing a good job, that I was not 'protecting' my children, was a bitter pill to swallow.
That was, until I actually swallowed it. Swallowed my pride, consumed and destroyed the idea that somehow, we are so supposed to just 'know how to be a good parent'. My guidebook must have been lost in the post!
Express yourself - Children's Mental health Awareness Week
Self-expression is such an important part of life and good wellbeing. It helps us highlight our thoughts, feelings, emotions, and allows us to build a narrative of our life. Some people express through art forms such as drawing and dance, whilst others through the things they do and what they wear.