Mental wellbeing is part of normal daily life, in the same way physical health is. Mental wellbeing also involves understanding the normal range of emotions everyone experiences; being able to use appropriate language to describe and explain them and understanding if the emotions they are feeling are appropriate or proportionate to the situation. Children also need to develop resilience towards every aspect of their life which they take with them throughout the challenges they face on life’s journey.
We therefore encourage all children to understand keeping healthy in a broad sense –
Our School Policy for Mental Health and Wellbeing of our children, details our purpose and aims further and which members of staff are key supports:
The DfE have published statutory guidance regarding ‘Physical Health and Mental Wellbeing’ (DfE, Updated 25.7.19). They state that by the end of Primary School, children should know:
• that mental wellbeing is a normal part of daily life, in the same way as physical health
• that there is a normal range of emotions (e.g. happiness, sadness, anger, fear, surprise, nervousness) and scale of emotions that all humans experience in relation to different experiences and situations
• how to recognise and talk about their emotions, including having a varied vocabulary of words to use when talking about their own and others’ feelings
• how to judge whether what they are feeling and how they are behaving is appropriate and proportionate
• the benefits of physical exercise, time outdoors, community participation, voluntary and service-based activity on mental wellbeing and happiness
• simple self-care techniques, including the importance of rest, time spent with friends and family and the benefits of hobbies and interests
• isolation and loneliness can affect children and that it is very important for children to discuss their feelings with an adult and seek support
• that bullying (including cyberbullying) has a negative and often lasting impact on mental wellbeing
• where and how to seek support (including recognising the triggers for seeking support), including whom in school they should speak to if they are worried about their own or someone else’s mental wellbeing or ability to control their emotions (including issues arising online)
• it is common for people to experience mental ill health. For many people who do, the problems can be resolved if the right support is made available, especially if accessed early enough
At Upham we fully embrace this guidance and go further; enabling children to:
• engage in active play throughout the year, building fitness and stamina,
• positive peer climate where they challenge any negative behaviours or bullying themselves,
• develop and sustain relationships where everyone learns to value everyone else,
• thrive in an Inclusive climate where opportunities are given to all so everyone is seen to succeed, regardless of their individualities,
• engage with charitable work to understand others needs and develop a sense of purpose,
• develop understanding and self-awareness around healthy practices for on-line activities and recreation.
Ensure positive mental health for all is encouraged by the ethos and environment we create at Upham, underpinned by our core values of love and care. These wide ranging approaches all contribute towards nurturing and developing mental health and wellbeing:
• Teaching of strategies and approaches through curriculum teaching in planned Relationships and Health Education (see Curriculum Tab for further details).
• Celebration assemblies are used to exemplify learning behaviours and role-model to others.
• Strong role peer models such as buddies and peer mentors.
• Learning in the context of cross-age relationships where social interaction is integral.
• Taught learning behaviours (the footsteps) used to promote understanding about emotional learning alongside subject learning.
• Collective worship used to explore ideas, feelings and human responses to serious events, current affairs.
• Focus on charitable work to instil empathy towards others and the positive feeling of doing something worthwhile for others .
• Behaviour policy which nurtures and promotes self-esteem. Where children make mistakes and ‘get things wrong’, this is robustly addressed with restorative approaches to ensure children take responsibility and secure learning from the ‘mistake’.
• A climate of peer support of each other where difference is viewed positively means children will not tolerate bullying or racism or hatred – they stand up to it, will tell adults and support the ‘victim’. Any bullying (or potential bullying) is addressed quickly and ensures both can move on positively so patterns of negative behaviours never develop.
• Everyone is included in everything – be it volunteering for a sports team, getting a part in the Christmas play, having the opportunity to be a buddy or just getting a turn.
• Small cohorts learn to find value in each other and that they have to get on, learning to be resilient in their relationships, rather than just avoiding, which helps them when they transfer to secondary school.
• An individualised approach – everyone needs a little more TLC or encouragement or help with something at some point.
• It is important children feels comfortable in themselves and develops a positive view of differences as the things which make us unique and valued rather than different or separate. Therefore we will ensure children see examples which they can relate to, such as seeing different family make-ups that they identify with and will feel they are included (Please read our Equality Duty for further information regarding equality).
• High emphasis, priority curriculum time and wide ranging provision for active lifestyles through sport and play to build fitness and stamina but also a positive impact on mental wellbeing.