Wellbeing Articles 2017

 

Responding to Bullying

 

 

 

Bullying used to be thought of as just part of childhood, a process by which we learnt to ‘toughen up.’ Today we no longer think that way. We now know that bullying is harmful and can lead to long-term problems and issues for those who are subject to it.

 

 

 

There are three basic types of bullying, physical, verbal and social. Physical bullying involves aggression or physical violence in order to coerce, intimidate or cause harm to a person. Verbal bullying is when words are consistently used to cause harm to a person and social bullying is when a person is purposefully excluded, blamed and  gossiped about. Of these three, social bullying is the most difficult to deal with, as it is often behind the scenes, with the only obvious evidence, the distress of the person on the receiving end.

 

 

 

At East Bentleigh Primary we recognise bullying has no part in school life and work    together to solve issues. To guide us we developed a ‘response to bullying document’, currently known as our ‘Safe Schools Policy.’ (Name change coming soon!!) This is a comprehensive document that describes the many forms of bullying, examples of   bullying, affects of bullying and consequences of bullying. It describes in detail steps and responsibilities of school staff, parents and students in response to bullying and guides teachers in their investigations.

 

 

 

Included in this policy are a number of appendices, including reporting procedures for both the person  reporting and the staff member receiving the report, which should be completed when making a formal complaint. This helps to ensure that information and investigations are duly documented for referral and enables a situation to be appropriately shared.

 

 

 

Please familiarise yourself with this document. It is on our website under the ‘Resources’ section with a drop down bar to ‘Policies, Forms and Documents,’ then click on Safe School Policy. Discuss the document with your child and ensure they know there is a child  friendly bullying report form they can complete, if they feel there is bullying occurring to them or to another (pictured here). If you require a hard copy, please speak with your child’s teacher.

 

 Published by EBPS 24th August 2017


Gratitude - good for your health and general wellbeing

 

There’s an old saying that if you’ve forgotten the language of gratitude, you’ll never be on speaking terms with happiness.

 

A growing body of research over the last few decades shows that actively practicing gratitude is a powerful tool for generating many physical and psychosocial benefits.

 

In fact there is now a great deal of knowledge and understanding around how gratitude makes us happier and more resilient.

These include:

  • Improved sleep
  • Greater refreshment on awakening
  • Less illness
  • Greater motivation to help others and practice generosity
  • Greater awareness of personal good fortune
  • Greater life satisfaction
  • Greater optimism
  • Stronger feelings of connectedness to others
  • Stronger, more resilient relationships
  • Greater ability to bounce back from adversity (resilience)

 

Perhaps most tellingly, researchers found that positive changes were markedly noticeable to others.

Here are some simple things you can do and encourage your kids to do, to experience the benefits of gratitude.

  • Keep a daily gratitude diary of three things you are thankful for. This works well first thing in the morning, or just before you go to bed. (Have a special craft afternoon where kids can make and decorate their own diaries)
  • At the dinner table pose the question for each family member to answer in turn, What’s the best thing that happened to you today?
  • Make it a practice to tell a family member, friend, or child, something you appreciate about them every day.
  • Look in the mirror when you are brushing your teeth, and think about something you have done well recently, or something you like about yourself. Ask your children to think of this too.

 

Thankfulness feels good, it’s good for you and it’s good for the people around you too.

It’s such a win-win-win, why would you not practice it.

 

Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On August 11, 2017


Why practice mindfulness with your child.

 

The following is an excerpt from an article by Chris Bergstrom, founder of the ‘Blissful Kids’ website. This website is an excellent resource for mindfulness activities for kids, teens and yourself. I highly recommend it. blissfulkids.com

 

Maybe you already practice and want to keep going … Or you want to get started. I want to help you in both cases...

 

I'm Chris Bergstrom, a dad and a certified mindfulness facilitator. I also founded Blissful Kids.  A top destination for parents who want to practice mindfulness with their kids.

 

I want to share a trick with you to help you keep your practice going after the initial excitement. I'm sure you know how hard it can be to sustain a new habit … I remember how hard it felt when I began with my son Anton.

 

Let me share something with you ... When I first started out with my son Anton I was so excited that I wrote a "mindfulness mission statement" ... I know, it sounds a little scary but it was a simple list of my WHY's. WHY I want to practice together with my son. I later found out that writing this list was worth gold. Now, I’m going to share it with you …

 

Here's my "mindfulness mission statement":

I want my son Anton to grow up emotionally intelligent, gentle, aware, and happy!

I want him to know that…

  • He has the tools to shape his own life
  • He can sharpen his focus to do better when he wants to.
  • He can connect with people on a deeper level
  • He can find balance and calm in life’s storms
  • He can recover quickly from difficulties

 

I want my son Anton to realize that…

  • He can choose his responses and actions even when life is overwhelming
  • He can cultivate happiness

 

You obviously don't have to write a "mission statement" like this but it's probably a good idea to spend some time thinking about your own reasons.

 

Ask yourself: why do I want to practice with my kid? Understanding your motivation will help you keep going!

 

When I think I'm too busy to practice, or think practice is boring or hard, I look at my list of WHY's and remember why our practice is worth the effort.

 

Your child will learn awesome skills to …

  • Decrease stress and anxiety
  • Focus and calm down
  • Navigate difficult emotions
  • Control impulses
  • Nurture compassion and positivity

 

These skills will help him or her, your family and all the people your child interacts with.

 

It's a beautiful gift!

 

So, remember to feel good about yourself when you practice. You are giving your child a beautiful gift.

 

Go ahead if you didn't already ... ask yourself: Why do I want to practice with my kid?


Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On August 11, 2017


Snakes and Ladders Game Launch

 

Monday 24th July 2017, saw the OFFICIAL launch of our East Bentleigh Snakes and Ladders game, created by our whole school community. We had two very special guests, Stuart Andrews our ‘Senior Education Improvement Leader’ and Lynn Vennings leader of Student Wellbeing at a regional level. Mr Andrews spoke of the importance of realizing that we have not just produced a game, but a valuable resource for learning and sharing ideas about getting along, managing ourselves and keeping safe.

 

A HUGE THANKYOU to Tania Ennor, (Tilly’s mum), for her amazing work in designing and preparing the artwork for both the board and the cards. Tania is a talented Graphic Designer and was able to take the drawings and ideas from our school community and make them into our incredible Snakes and Ladders game.

 

Another BIG THANK YOU to Carol Diggerson, one of our dedicated aides. Carol made all the calico bags, big and small, on her trusty sewing machine over a weekend. We REALLY appreciate your help Carol!

 

And of course a MONSTER THANK YOU to all the teachers, children and parents who helped our Snakes and Ladders dream come true. We hope you enjoy using and sharing the resource you have created.

 

Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On August 11, 2017


Perseverance

 

What is perseverance and why should we want it or need it? Perseverance is the drive that helps you to get past the hard stuff to get to what you want or need, that extra effort that keeps you trying even though you want to quit. Without perseverance, you may not reach your goals, or get where you want to be.

 

To persevere means that when you are faced with a challenge you don’t just stop and give up. You problem solve to work a way around, or through the difficulty. Your difficulty might be something you have to work through with your mind, or it might be a physical challenge, or even an emotional difficulty. Using perseverance requires patience and self-control. It’s easy to throw your hands in the air and say, “Too hard,” but when we persevere it means we stop and work through things.

 

It’s important to realise that perseverance is not, ‘don’t give up no matter what’ or, ‘never quit.’ Sometimes even though we do our best, we need to move on, or change the goal. Maybe we need a smaller goal, or maybe just a rest until we’re ready to try again. Sometimes we need more support to help us through and all of this is ok.

 

We all use perseverance daily. Anything we find difficult requires perseverance to get through. Think of a baby learning to walk. Without perseverance it would never happen. Think also how we respond to babies learning to walk; every effort is rewarded with praise and encouragement, no effort is considered a failure, or a waste of time.

 

Last week class 2L children worked through an activity that required teamwork, problem solving and perseverance. Each team was given two rolls of toilet paper and instructed to work together to wrap someone in their team up like a mummy. The catch was, every time the toilet paper broke, they had to completely unravel their person, tape the paper together and begin again. Here are some of their comments relating to perseverance.

 

We chose one person in our group and we wrapped them in toilet paper. It was really hard because the paper kept breaking and then we had to unwrap them and tape the toilet paper together and start again. We had to keep going because our goal was to completely wrap the person, except their head and we really wanted every group to succeed. Perseverance means to keep going and to solve any problems that come up. We had two people wrapping and two people in charge of taping when the paper broke.

 

By Maithy

 

Perseverance means you keep going until you get it right. Sometimes you have to give up because the goal was too hard, or maybe you need to have a break. It’s ok to have a rest because you can go back to it, or try again, or maybe make a different goal.

 

By Lola

 

Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On June 30, 2017


Wellbeing activities in Prep K & 1D

 

Wellbeing in Prep K

 

Prep K have been learning lots about working in teams and how to get along with our friends. Our big buddies helped us make a friendship web while we were all standing in a circle.  We had to throw a ball of wool to each other and say what made that person a good friend.  A few weeks later the preps repeated the activity, this time making it a permanent     feature in the classroom as part of our display board.  We have learnt that we are all connected through friendship, we are all a big team who help each other.

 

We have also been practicing being mindful.  We’ve been listening to a beautiful CD.  Our favourite song is called the ‘Humming Song’.  It’s about the small things in life that make us smile such as the sound of laughter, dolphins playing, the sun rising and setting.  When we listen we sit in a big circle, close our eyes and hum to the tune.  It’s a very relaxing and calming moment.

 

Wellbeing in Class 1D

 

This week in 1D we looked at a story book written by a descendant of the Kailaroi and Yuwalayaay people in     south-west Queensland. It was about a KOOKOO KOOKABURRA the greatest story teller in the animal realm. The animals enjoy many funny stories however when KOOKABURRA starts to tease theanimals in his stories they turn away from him and he feels very lonely. An old bird tells him the story about the BOOMERANG which sends out kindness and in return brings more kindness back.

 

In discussion with the class we discovered that the boomerang resembles our invisible buckets because when we are kind and helpful to somebody we fill the bucket not just for the person being helped but also our own bucket and we can feel content and happy.

 

Kindness is like a boomerang - if you throw it often, it comes back often. But if you never take a chance to pick it up and throw it out there, then you may not ever get it back ‘Kookoo Kookaburra’ Gregg Dreise.

 

So we wondered if another word for “bucketfiller” could actually be the aboriginal word “Boomerang”. We might just use that word for a while to see if we are right about it.

 

We also then painted big boomerangs and many stars of kindness flying away and returning in our painting lesson as a follow up.

 

Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On June 20, 2017


Generosity

 

Generosity is linked to compassion and empathy. Generosity is the capacity to give, not based on the response or behaviour of others, but from a deep sense of wanting to share and spread something positive. Generosity does not only mean giving other people your money and things. It also means giving your time, attention, hard work, patience, kind words and talents to help and encourage others.

 

There is something really special about generous people, they are a joy to be around and somehow feel safe, as they tend to be generous in their appraisal of us as well. A generous person has a positive bias when viewing their world and those within it.

 

Studies now show that generosity is in our best interests and is one of the keys to positive mental and physical health. Not only does generosity reduce stress, support one’s physical health, enhance one’s sense of purpose, and naturally fight depression, it is also shown to increase one’s lifespan.

 

So how can we teach our children to be generous?

 

Firstly we have to practice generosity ourselves. Children will watch and copy what we do.

 

We need to talk about it. Point out when others are generous and praise our children when they perform a generous act.

 

Encourage it. Look for opportunities to help your children practice being generous and doing things for others. Visit a neighbor and offer to help, or make a special gift for someone, who least expects it, for no reason at all.

 

Read and tell stories of generosity. The following are some of my favourites and are beautiful examples of love and generosity.

 

Pine and the Winter Sparrow by Alexis York Lumbard.  Based on a Native Americanfable, it tells the story of an injured sparrow who cannot fly south for the winter.  All of the other trees turn the little sparrow away, except for the pine tree, who offers the bird shelter for the winter.  Due to this act of generosity, the Creator decided that the pine tree would be rewarded by not losing its leaves in the winter.  And thus it is due to its innate kindness that the pine tree stays green all year long.

 

The Giving Tree by Shel Silversteini is a classic book about the selfless nature of giving. Every day the boy would come to the tree to eat her apples, swing from her branches, or slide down her trunk...and the tree was happy. But as the boy grew older he began to want more from the tree, and the tree gave and gave and gave. A beautiful story that I cannot read to a class without crying.

 

The message at the heart of this simple story about a beautiful fish who learns to make friends by sharing his most prized possessions, is that sharing with others is much more fun than having something alone.

 

We cannot speak of tales for children about compassion and generosity without         mentioning Oscar Wilde’s The Happy Prince. Together the golden statue of a Prince and the swallow who has taken shelter with him give tirelessly to those who are in need. I challenge you to read this one without shedding a tear. (or maybe that’s just me)

 

Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On May 25, 2017


Wellbeing learning in Class PR and 3L

 

Social and emotional learning in the Steiner Prep R

 

In our Steiner Prep we work with positive strengths.

 

We hold a ‘Strengths Circle’ each week where we share our experiences of what a strength is and acknowledge the strengths of the people around us. We discuss how these strengths are able to contribute to family and school life. In our Strengths Circle we also    consider a theme. Lately we have been talking about the idea of responsibility and what responsibility means to each of us.

 

Here are some of the responses …

 

Teacher: ‘When we think of the word 'responsibility' what might we mean?’

 

Child: ‘My cousin.’

 

Teacher:  ‘What particularly about your cousin might be related to the word 'responsibility?'

 

Child: ‘Me and my cousin do jobs at home together.’

 

Teacher:  ‘Good. Sharing jobs at home. That's a way of taking responsibility.’

 

Teacher: ‘What are some of the ways we may take 'responsibility’ for something ?

 

Child: ’Pets, when I’m looking after my pets.’

 

Child: ‘Looking after my dog.’

 

Child: ‘Taking my lunchbox to the kitchen after school.’

 

Teacher’s question: ‘What are some 'responsibilities' we have at school?’

 

Child: 'Washing dishes'

 

Child: ‘Taking out the compost.’

 

Child: ''Waiting for our turn."

 

Teacher: 'There are many ways that we can take responsibility for things. It is great that we all have responsibilities at home and at school.

 

Something to ponder: Can you think of any responsibilities that you might have at home? Perhaps you take the dog for walk or clear the kitchen table after dinner with your family. Maybe you have chores that you do such as tidy your bedroom, take the rubbish out or even vacuum the house. While I think we all enjoy having responsibilities perhaps the greatest responsibility is the responsibility we take for ourselves in all that we say and do.

 

Growth Mindset Learning in Class 3L

 

Since the beginning of the year Class 3L have been learning about Growth Mindset. Growth Mindset theory teaches us all that with persistence, resilience, effort, learning from our mistakes and trying different   strategies we can all improve in areas we think that we 'are not good at'. If you are interested in finding out more I recommend looking up Carol Dweck, the Professor of Psychology, who is leading the research in this area.

 

As part of this learning Class 3L have been talking and learning about how mistakes can help our learning.  To help our learning we explored a wonderful book called 'My Beautiful Oops' which explores and promotes seeing mistakes as an opportunity.  Inspired by the book Class 3L had a lot of fun creating their own version of the book.

 

Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On May 12, 2017


Forgiveness

 

Child says or does something to another child that causes hurt.

 

“Say you’re sorry,” the wrong doer is urged.

 

Seconds pass, then… “Oh alright I’m sorry.”

 

“Ok, but don’t do it again,” says the child who was hurt.

 

This superficial display of humility and forgiveness doesn’t teach kids anything about true humility, forgiveness, or how to repair relationships.

 

No one’s story has been heard, the background may remain grey and fuzzy, no one’s feelings have been acknowledged and therefore there has been no opportunity to empathise, essential for true regret or remorse.

 

Helping children move towards the ability to give and receive forgiveness requires long term coaching and opportunities forpractise if the kind of forgiveness that restores relationships is to develop.

 

Sometimes children (and even adults) have some misconceptions about saying sorry or forgiving someone who has wronged them. They may see it as a weakness, or that forgiving means they’re a bit of a pushover. Parents can teach children that        forgiveness might mean I give up my right to revenge, but not my right to expect change.

 

They may believe that if they forgive another who has hurt them, that their feelings don’t matter. It is important then, when talking to children who are experiencing conflict, that all sides are heard respectfully and feelings are acknowledged. Sincere apologies are far more likely when the other recognises that they too would feel hurt if the shoe were on the other foot.

 

In their book, The Five Languages of Apology, Gary Chapman and Jennifer Thomas describe five elements of a good apology.

 

Expressing regret – “I’m sorry for . . .” (Be specific about what you alone did and acknowledge the hurt you caused.)

 

Accepting responsibility – “I was wrong.”

 

Making restitution – “What can I do to make it right?”

 

Genuinely repenting – “I’ll try not to do that again.”

 

Requesting forgiveness – “Will you please forgive me?”

 

In order to learn about true humility and forgiveness, children need to see it practiced and modelled.

 

And that means us, the adults in their lives.

 

The following is therefore worth thinking about

 

What do we believe or feel about forgiveness?

 

How prepared are we to forgive?

 

How willing are we to admit we are wrong and apologise

 

What good does it do me when I forgive someone?

 

By Mia 2L

 

Forgiveness is when you forgive someone if they’ve done something wrong. You have to use your words of course to explain why you forgive them. When you forgive someone it can make someone feel better and makes your friendship better. Before you forgive someone maybe you’re upset, but after you forgive them you feel better about them.

 

Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On May 5, 2017


Wellbeing in the classrooms - 2L & 5D

 

Wellbeing in Class 2L

 

The slow motion game

 

We worked together in a game to help us make a calmer classroom.

 

We talked about how quiet time helps us when things get hard.

 

In this game, everyone followed the leader, trying to copy them exactly, like we were a giant mirror. The leader has to move in slow motion.

 

We talked about…

 

  • What did you do to help you to be such a good mirror? (watched others carefully, controlled our bodies).
  • How did the game make you feel? (slow, peaceful, calm)
  • What else can we do to calm our classroom down when it gets too noisy or fast? (take a minute to relax, listen to to the sounds outside)

 

Mindful practice

 

We listened to the glockenspiel and raised and lowered our hands to the notes going up and down.

 

Clear messages

 

We talked about how important it is to tell what’s happened clearly. We talked about…

 

  • Telling someone what you see?
  • Giving instructions clearly - using our words
  • Letting a person know what you want them to do?
  • Letting a person know what you need from them?

 

Then we played a game, ‘Treasure Hunt’.

 

The teacher hid an object and then gave instructions to us so we could find the object.

 

After the teacher did it a few times, we got to have a go at hiding something and giving instructions to find it.

 

Managing Anger

 

We brainstormed things we do when we get angry that are not helpful.

 

We talked about what we can do that would help.

 

We talked about or practiced 10 ways for helping us when we get angry. Like;

 

  • Five deep breaths
  • Robot to rag doll
  • Ice to water
  • Balloon breathing

 

 Wellbeing in Class 5D

 

We explored positive and negative emotions, while playing vocabulary games. Subsequently, in pairs we translated our emotions into written language to reflect the contrast between the positive and negative feelings.

 

The beautiful bird flies high into the sky,

 

Her wings spread out like the clouds.

 

She flies around the old gum tree,

 

When suddenly she hears a bang.

 

The bird turns around to see the hunter

 

 with gun looking for animals to kill,

 

He gives the bird a despicable smile and he goes to shoot,

 

but the bird flies away with horror.

 

She hears another bang and falls to the ground.

 

By Zoe and Myfy

 

Enthusiastic holy men happily bathing in the magnificent flowing water of the River Ganges. They watched the beautiful birds glide through the fresh air at a terrific speed and plunge into the sky blue water. While other birds gulp down the delicious shimmery fruit that hang from the mystical trees.

 

Suddenly, Trumpy the disgraceful elephant comes barging through the river making destruction and extreme waves. The frightened holy men pile out of the water screaming, and climb up the mysterious tree to safety. Trumpy coiled his long obnoxious trunk around the tree and shook it violently until all the holy men spill out one by one. Furiously Trumpy lay on the poor holy men until they were in such pain they perished.

 

By Hila and Jessi

 

Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On May 5, 2017


Helping Children Through Conflict

 

All children experience conflict within friendships and connections, as a normal part of school life. They spend so much time together that to expect children to get along all the time is      unreasonable.

 

Naturally children need support and guidance when experiencing conflict. How you respond as a parent can make a difference. To make a positive difference it is important you:

 

* Don’t take the conflict away from them - imposing your solution can leave them

 

feeling their wishes have not been considered

 

* Don’t take sides – they will be friends again and taking sides can make this awkward

 

for your child

 

* Don’t elevate what they are feeling - Children need to acknowledge what they are

 

feeling, but also to understand feelings pass

 

* Don’t devalue what they are feeling- Children need to understand their feelings are

 

valid in order to acknowledge and address them

 

The following advice for helping children manage conflict is taken from a KidsMatter Primary information sheet for families and school staff. View them all online at www.kidsmatter.edu.au

 

Key points for helping children resolve conflict

 

The ways that adults respond to children’s conflicts have powerful effects on their behaviour and skill development. Until they have developed their own skills for managing conflict effectively, most children will need very specific adult guidance to help them reach a good resolution.

 

Parents, carers and teaching staff can help children in sorting out conflict together, by seeing conflict as a shared problem that can be solved by understanding both points of view and finding a solution that everyone is happy with.

 

Helping Children Through Conflict

 

All children experience conflict within friendships and connections, as a normal part of school life. They spend so much time together that to expect children to get along all the time is unreasonable.

 

Naturally children need support and guidance when experiencing conflict. How you respond as a parent can make a difference. To make a positive difference it is important you:

 

  • Don’t take the conflict away from them - imposing your solution can leave them feeling their wishes have not been considered
  • Don’t take sides – they will be friends again and taking sides can make this awkward for your child
  • Don’t elevate what they are feeling - Children need to acknowledge what they are feeling, but also to understand feelings pass
  • Don’t devalue what they are feeling- Children need to understand their feelings are valid in order to acknowledge and address them

 

The following advice for helping children manage conflict is taken from a KidsMatter Primary information sheet for families and school staff. View them all online at www.kidsmatter.edu.au

 

Key points for helping children resolve conflict

 

The ways that adults respond to children’s conflicts have powerful effects on their behaviour and skill development. Until they have developed their own skills for managing conflict effectively, most children will need very specific adult guidance to help them reach a good resolution.

 

Parents, carers and teaching staff can help children in sorting out conflict together, by seeing conflict as a shared problem that can be solved by understanding both points of view and finding a solution that everyone is happy with.

 

Guide and coach

 

When adults impose a solution on children it may solve the conflict in the short term, but it can leave children feeling that their wishes have not been taken into account. Coaching children through the conflict resolution steps helps them feel involved. It shows them how effective conflict resolution can work so that they can start to build their own skills.

 

Listen to all sides without judging

 

To learn the skills for effective conflict resolution children need to be able to acknowledge their own point of view and listen to others’ views without fearing that they will be blamed or judged. Being heard encourages children to hear and understand what others have to say and how they feel, and helps them to learn to value others.

 

Support children to work through strong feelings

 

Conflict often generates strong feelings such as anger or anxiety. These feelings can get in the way of being able to think through conflicts fairly and reasonably. Acknowledge children’s feelings and help them to manage them. It may be necessary to help children calm down before trying to resolve the conflict.

 

Remember

 

Praise children for finding a solution and carrying it out.

 

If an agreed solution doesn’t work out the first time, go through the steps again to understand the needs and concerns and find a different solution.

 

Aim for Win-Win

 

Helping children to negotiate a win-win solution by encouraging them to listen to each other, to see another point of view, and to problem-solve so everyone's happy promotes equality, fairness and avoids an unhelpful ‘win-lose’ mentality.

 

Why should we aim for win-win? Because ultimately children who know how to successfully manage conflict are happier, have better friendships and learn better at school.

 

*The information in this resource is based on Wertheim, E., Love, A., Peck, C. & Littlefield, L. (2006). Skills for resolving conflict (2nd Edition). Melbourne: Eruditions Publishing.

 

Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On March 9, 2017



Welcome to the 2017 Student Leader Wellbeing Team

 

Welcome to 2017 on behalf of myself and the Student Leader Wellbeing Team.

 

This year our student Wellbeing Leaders are…

 

Julian 6D, Ameya 6L, Brayden 6D, Tyler 6D and Zack 6D

 

This year our Student Leader Wellbeing Team will be focusing on…

 

Collecting feedback from Prep-year 4 students about how they feel at school

 

Providing feedback on the above to classes and teachers

 

Developing an action plan to address any issues

 

Designing a Friendship area for the Junior School play area

 

Planning and facilitating a Wellbeing Day with an anti-bullying focus

 

This is a huge amount of work when we meet for half an hour a week, but we are hopeful we will achieve a great deal towards these goals. Time will tell if we have bitten off more than we can chew.

 

The following quote by Henry David Thoreau sums up the real goal of the Student Wellbeing Leadership team; to become a little more than what we were before.

 

“What you get by achieving your goals

 is not as important as

 who you become by achieving your goals.”

 

Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On March 9, 2017


Practising Mindfulness


I found this article in the Age last weekend and I thought it both timely and interesting. It is about a mindfulness study carried out at Lara Secondary College in Melbourne, using the ‘Smiling Mind’ app that we talked about at our last parent information evening on mindfulness for kids. What I found particularly interesting was that this research showed the benefits of mindfulness kick in even when it is practised as little as three times a week.

If you want to practise mindfulness at home with your children, I suggest starting once a week and gradually increasing it. Use activities that will engage your child, for example, some of the movement/senses orientated activities and stop as soon as your child is becoming restless. Not all activities suit all children, so persevere until you find some that suit your child. Lee Jellis - Wellbeing

Meditation trial at Victoria schools improves sleep, concentration and behaviour

Students take time in class to meditate as part of the Smiling Mind mindfulness program. 

A groundbreaking research study funded by the Victorian Government has found that mindfulness meditation can lead to improved quality of sleep, less anxiety and better exam results for students.

During a trial at 12 Victorian schools, 2000 students had the opportunity to meditate and learn breathing techniques from Smiling Mind, a free web- and app-based program.

At Lara Secondary College, all Year 7 and 8 students participated in the research project, meditating at least three times a week during class time.

The results showed the positive impact was wide-ranging, with students reporting significant reductions in bullying incidents and disruptive behaviour in the classroom as well as improvements in sleep quality, concentration, behaviour and engagement.

At-risk students benefited the most; students who experienced higher levels of emotional distress before participating in the program showed the biggest improvements.

In their own words, students said the exercises made them "feel confident", "helped me get relaxed", "I feel more energised" and "it was nice just to slow down for a little bit".

One of the Lara College participants said: "I have Asperger syndrome and when I meditate it calms me down a lot. I don't have a lot of panic attacks any more and I daydream less."

Smiling Mind co-founder Jane Martino says one of the most powerful outcomes of meditation is management of emotional responses.

"As well as meditation we can also support our young people by providing plenty of 'down time' and not over-scheduling them," Martino says. "They don't need too many activities over and above school so they feel 'busy' before they even reach puberty. I'm convinced this is a large driver of anxiety in many of our young people, particularly in primary school.

"We can also work on giving to others and sometimes focusing more heavily on what we do have rather than what we don't."

Co-founder James Tutton says that in addition to cultivating mindfulness, it's important for young people to have a good diet, plenty of sleep, exercise and healthy technology habits.

"Issues around anxiety and stress are amplified in today's world due to societal and social changes, especially the use of technology and the impact this has on sleep, bullying, peer pressure," Tutton says.

"Anxiety and stress are very dangerous issues if left untreated. They have a direct correlation to a breadth of negative mental health conditions.

"Smiling Mind cultivates mindfulness, which is no silver bullet, but can play a very substantial role in good mental health."

Kristie Kellahan – The Age Sat. 26th November 2016

 

Written by East Bentleigh Primary School On March 9, 2017




 

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