Last week was a busy week in Swans School!!
February 7th until 11th was Children’s Mental Health Week, whilst February 8th was also Safer Internet Day. We combined both of these important dates with five whole days of awareness activities for our primary and secondary school children.
Life is full of challenges, and there are times when certain difficulties may affect our mental health. Young people can find it particularly difficult to distance themselves from uncomfortable feelings due to the constant pull of social media. Therefore, at Swans School we help our children to develop good coping mechanisms such as resilience, time management, regular exercise and emotional expression through art or drama.
Last week our primary school children enjoyed a variety of mindful workshops, ICT tasks and inspirational quotes. They also greatly enjoyed some additional fitness with Joe Wicks.
They explored their understanding of healthy online relationships with an assembly, classroom activities and a Kahoot quiz. They also spent some time reminding our children to check in on their friends, and we explored words that could help them to talk with peers who may be having a hard time. Parents may find this free online guide from National Online Safety useful.
In Swans Secondary School Years 6 to 9 experienced, “Drop Down Mornings”. These students stepped away from their standard timetable, starting the day with tutor time activities that included an understanding of self care, good conversational skills and writing thank you cards. Miss Natalie’s assembly explored common mental health issues, such as anxiety or low self esteem and she took the time to explain the difference between being “Mindful”, as opposed to “Mind Full”, sharing some meditation techniques and later progressing the topic with Miss Sarah to include mindful eating. Each year group had a yoga lesson with Miss Aisling or Don Prieto and made origami Swans decorated with messages of kindness with Mr Malachi. They also welcomed guest speakers who discussed healthy eating for growing minds, and wellbeing.
In our PSHE lessons our Swans students considered how to be their “best selves”:
How do we feel when we are at our best?
What do we learn about ourselves when things do go wrong?
How to recognise helpful and unhelpful thoughts
How social media influences our feelings about ourselves and others
Our ICT lessons explored our students' understanding of safer internet day and why it is internationally celebrated every year to include issues such as gaming, online influences and “facts”.
Our strict Swans School code of conduct clearly details how we expect our students to communicate with each other and staff to enable a co-supportive and kind community. We also provide a positive environment for students to express their individuality, with the benefit of extracurricular activities that nurture individuality, such as sports teams, theatre productions and the Debate Club.
Parents of younger children may also wish to refer to the Childnet website for help and resources. The Adventures of Kara, Winston and the SMART Crew is a cartoon that helps to illustrate the 5 internet safety SMART rules.
Should you have any concerns about mental health, internet safety or any other issue relating to a Swans School student, please always feel free to contact a member of the Pastoral Care team.
Details of our Care Team are listed below:
Educational Psychologist and Primary Wellbeing Support: Marta Bauluz
Primary School General: please feel free to discuss any concerns that you may have with your class teacher
Primary School Head of Pastoral Care and SENDco: Miss Anne White
Secondary School SENDco: Mr David Fletcher
Secondary School Head of Pastoral Care: Mrs Debra Hodder
Year 6: Miss Lindsay
Year 7: Miss Marisa Parsons
Year 8: Miss Natalie Denton
Year 9: Miss Joanna Hudson
Year 10: Miss Shobha Prabhu-Naik
Year 11: Miss Sandra Velazquez
Years 12 and 13: Miss Michelle Roberts
Please feel free to reach out to any of the above contacts,
Or send an email via the office