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Trends in Wellbeing

I was reading recently about trends in wellbeing.  It was interesting to find out the range of topical issues that are informing policymakers and leaders (Source: Global Wellness Institute).

2021 trends:

TREND 1: Increased interest from parents in their children’s curriculum at school following lockdown.
TREND 2: Teenagers using apps to support their wellbeing, from sleep to breathwork.
TREND 3: Generational health — grandparents and their grandchildren engaging in wellness activities together.
TREND 4: Mental health being front and centre in schools with more support for younger children.
TREND 5: Nutrition in schools improving as the science supports the efforts.

It's great to read how research is informing further work in this field.  Each of these deserve a whole raft of further readings, but I delved further into TREND 5 - mostly because one of my children was recently diagnosed as a celiac.  Hence, I am interested in how diet etc affects mental health and overall wellbeing.  This is a bit of a rabbit hole, as I descended into a world of gut bacteria, fasting and supplements.

The 2022 trends are even more fascinating: 

TREND 1: Teachers leaving the workforce
TREND 2: Mindfulness Programming in Schools
TREND 3 : Personalised Learning
TREND 4: Trauma-Informed Practices
TREND 5: Bite-Sized Learning

It was with sadness that I read about the quantities of teachers leaving the sector.  Although the research was from the US, I know that similar trends exist here (44% of teachers in England plan to quit within five years - Guardian, April 2022).

Good teachers are to be treasured.  I say that not as a teacher myself, but because of the wonderful colleagues I have here at Pilgrims'.  Pupils give a school its purpose, but teachers allow that purpose to be fulfilled. 

It's just a shame that a lot of teachers in the wider community don't live a 'well' life because of work.  However, we can hardly expect teachers to deliver wellness and good mental health content if they don't experience it.  As we say in the positive psychology world, 'you must live it before you can teach it' (Learn it, Live it, Teach it, Embed it: Implementing a whole school approach to foster positive mental health and wellbeing through Positive Education Erin Hoare · David Bott · Justin Robinson, 2017).

Normalising conversations about when we are struggling, and being proactive in looking after ourselves, mentally and physically, is the way of the future.  We must look after teachers, so they can get on with what they do best - TEACH.  

At Pilgrims', the staff do really well and as a community are strong.  That's not to say we don't have our moments - just like everyone else!  But this is a great place where pupils, parents and staff all try to make it a better place to work and learn.

Staff and pupil wellbeing is not a trend.  It needs to be part of the system - Learn it, Live it, Teach it, Embed it.

Matt Shroff
Director of Wellbeing

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