Children’s Mental Health Week provided pupils at Stephenson Way Academy with the perfect opportunity to explore what wellbeing means to them. Pupils enjoyed a whole week of ‘healthy me’ activities, aimed at helping them to develop their own ‘toolkit’ for healthy living.

Working together with Taylor Shaw, our catering partner, younger pupils completed a bacteria workshop, which taught them the importance of beating bugs and nasties by washing their hands thoroughly each and every time they turn the tap on. Meanwhile, KS2 pupils looked at how food choices impact on their wellness by chopping, mixing and moulding food such as fruit smoothies and pasta using fresh ingredients. On sampling her freshly made kiwi and banana smoothie for the first time, Savanna declared it to be, “Absolutely delicious!”

Aware that wellness goes beyond the diet, a whole host of sporting taster activities, such as Judo, Boxercise and Yoga were also on offer, leaving children feeling energised and raring to go.

In an assembly given by Debbie from Relax Kids, everyone was taught some simple solutions to help stay calm in stressful situations. From shoulder shrugging to hand massage, deep breathing to positive thinking, everyone left the hall with a greater sense of calm. Year 6 pupils were particularly delighted to find out that Debbie will be on-hand to support them with more stress-busting as the busy SATs periods approaches.

Across the course of the week, children were also encouraged to consider how kindness to others can have its rewards both as the person being kind to others and as a recipient of praise. In Year 3, compliments bags were pinned up on the whiteboard so that pupils could periodically leave notes and well wishes for their peers. At the end of the week, those bags were given to children to empty and read and some children seemed to grow a foot taller on discovering all the lovely things that others had written especially for them.

Considering the impact that the week’s activities had made to pupils, Acting Headteacher, Mr Jones, told us, “Most importantly, the children have had a lot of fun this week. They’ve enjoyed new experiences, worked together brilliantly and have been excited about being healthy. Thank you to all the outside professionals who worked with our children this week – activities were fun, informative and inspiring.”

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