Our pupils’ wellbeing is always at the heart of our education at Lyonsdown, but the last few weeks have seen an array of activities across the School that have been specifically designed to make our pupils smile, to be happy, and to help them to focus on their wellbeing.
This week has been particularly busy at Lyonsdown, as we wanted to mark Children’s Mental Health Week. “We are working incredibly hard to boost morale and support our children’s wellbeing during this third lockdown,” says Head, Helen Stanton-Tonner. “All year groups need a different type of support – so we have seen a variety of activities that are age-appropriate. For example, some of our youngest girls, in Reception class, have been creating their own ‘worry boxes’, along with discussing the importance of learning strategies for dealing with their worries.”
Year 6 has been particularly focused on their wellbeing this week, with a focus on letters and fun! All girls received a letter from Mrs Hall and Miss Sherwood. “We described how much we miss the girls,” says Mrs Hall, “and what we are doing to stay fit mentally and physically, including new skills we are learning. In my case that’s perfecting hair braiding!” The letter was a lovely surprise through the post, along with some added glitter in the envelope! Mrs Hall has also been providing personalised wellbeing support, sending out individual cards to each girl, each with a personal message. As well as providing weekly individual calls to girls that need a bit more support.
The girls have also been encouraged to support each other’s wellbeing. As well as writing thoughtful and personalised letters for one another, the Head Girl and Deputy Head Girl have sent a message out to all pupils to help lift the spirits of the whole Lyonsdown community. “To mark the end of exams,” adds Mrs Hall, “pairs of girls are now reading books virtually to Pre-Reception on a Friday afternoon – to spread a little bit of happiness to our youngest pupils.”
Morning registrations for Year 6 have been focused on fun, with a ‘fancy dress Friday’ that saw Mrs Hall dressed as Repunzel, and a family pet roll-call too! The girls have also been encouraged to create a ‘registration playlist’ – of upbeat music to listen to whilst they join for registration each morning.
Alongside all their normal lessons, with Mrs Hall and their specialist teachers in Art, Drama, Languages, Music, Science and Sport, there have been activities to encourage the girls to boost their wellbeing. For example quizzes that have required them to look for objects around their homes, to get them away from their screens and moving just that little bit more.
Mrs Stanton Tonner concludes, “we are working incredibly hard to support and encourage our pupils to boost their morale and to share their thoughts and feelings. Please do speak with your child’s teacher if you have any concerns that you think we should know about and we can work together to give them the support they need. I don’t think I could better The Duchess of Cambridge’s words, when she said ‘This is a hugely challenging time for us all so please look after yourself too. Find those ways in which to share your thoughts and your feelings or find someone to talk to because we really do need to be the very best versions of ourselves for the children in our care.’ ”