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How WellBeings can support your whole school approach to mental health and wellbeing

A Whole School Approach to Mental Health and Wellbeing 

It is becoming increasingly evident that a child’s mental health and wellbeing has a direct impact on their cognitive development and learning, as well as their physical and social health. This awareness highlights why a solid whole school approach to mental health and wellbeing is so important, as healthy development in these areas leads to good mental wellbeing in adulthood. 

It is essential that a whole school approach to mental health and wellbeing is coordinated and evidence-based in order to effectively improve pupil’s emotional health and regulation. The UK government has outlined eight principles to be considered when developing a whole-school approach to mental health that can protect and promote the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people, if implemented consistently and comprehensively.

eight principles for whole school wellbeing approach
The eight principles to promoting a whole school approach to mental health and wellbeing. 

Developing an effective whole-school approach to mental health and wellbeing that comprehensively includes each of the above principles may undoubtedly seem like a daunting task for your setting’s Senior Mental Health Lead to undertake – this is where WellBeings can help!  

What is WellBeings? 

WellBeings is an exciting new online programme that makes it easy for primary schools to empower their learners, staff and parents to positively transform their mental health and emotional awareness through ready-to-use activities, stories and practices.  

Background and Development 

This programme has been developed collaboratively between Alliance Psychological Services, through their existing ‘Mindfulness for Kits’ programme, and Learnful with Jo Bradley.  

Alliance Psychological Services’ ‘Children, Young People and Families’ service currently provide mental health support to children and young people in almost 50 schools and colleges across Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees through their Mental Health Support Team. Mindfulness for Kits was developed by this service area to support student and staff mental wellbeing and imbed a mindfulness culture into educational and home settings.  

Jo Bradley worked as a teacher and Assistant Headteacher in primary schools for over 10 years before training as a mindfulness teacher and therefore has a strong understanding of what school life is really like and how it can directly impact home life. Learnful Schools is a mindfulness programme, created and developed by Jo, that was designed to be easy for staff to imbed into their school day and enable the delivery of daily wellbeing practices to pupils that can help them to regulate their emotional wellbeing.  

This collaboration between Alliance Psychological Services’, with their background in counselling and psychological therapies, and Learnful Schools, the creator of which has first-hand experience in schools and is now a fully trained mindfulness teacher, has allowed the development of an effective mindfulness programme in the form of WellBeings. 

The Benefits 

WellBeings meets each of the eight principles mentioned above, easing some of the pressures of the Senior Mental Health Lead who can rest assured that their school is following a wellbeing programme that can help their pupils, staff and families to effectively develop their mental resilience and emotional regulation in line with government guidance.  

Not only does WellBeings embed seamlessly into the school day, but it also covers all of the requirements of the PSHE curriculum, as well as aspects of other subjects including literacy, science and art. The content of the WellBeings programme is fully delivered by us online meaning there is no additional workload for staff (which we are sure will have teachers punching the air)! 

MindED 2022 

WellBeings will be attending this year’s Healthy MindED conference, hosted by Schools North East, where guest speakers Chris King (Alliance Psychological Services) and Jo Bradley (Learnful Schools) will be talking more about WellBeings and the theory behind the programme.  

Their speaking session on ‘Transforming Reactive Behaviours’, scheduled at 3:05pm, will include an interactive examination of mentally and emotionally-fuelled reactive behaviour, and methods of transforming it into safe and appropriate responsive action. 

Be sure to visit Chris and Jo at their stand throughout the day where they will be sharing some of the practical mindfulness tools and techniques from the WellBeings Programme which can be easily implemented into the classroom environment. You might also find some giveaways and prizes up for grabs! 

Healthy MindED 2022 will take place on 20th May 2022 at The Fed, Gateshead. 

Learn more about Wellbeings at https://wellbeingschools.co.uk/ 

Learnful Schools: https://www.learnful.co.uk/ 

Alliance Psychological Services: https://www.alliancepsychology.com/  

Sources: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/1020249/Promoting_children_and_young_people_s_mental_health_and_wellbeing.pdf  

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