It’s Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week from the 1st-7th February 2021, this year’s theme is “Express Yourself”!
At Guide to Life, we believe health and wellbeing is a top priority so we have cultivated some resources and fun ways of implementing the 5 Ways to Wellbeing into the theme “Express Yourself”.
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Children are constantly soaking up knowledge and information, this is a perfect way to gain new skills and “express yourself”. During Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week try the following:
- It is important to always listen to your pupils. Take interest into who/what has made your students happy throughout lockdown or in general. This may lead to interesting conversations and debates within the classroom.
- Discuss what new things pupils have learnt during lockdown. New skills are crucial to development and can be beneficial to mental health.
- Take this one step further and challenge your pupils to learn something new this week (cooking, a new dance move etc.). This can lead to a show and tell at the end of the week of what students have learned.
- Try using our resource (50 Things to do before your 11 3/4) for examples!
Expressing yourself is all about saying how you truly feel through a medium that works for you. Take Disney Pixar’s Soul, it talks about the “ZONE” where people’s souls are transported to when they are doing what they love.
By showing your students Soul and this featurette “In the Zone” you can illustrate that everyone experiences being in the zone and expressing themselves differently and feeling that connection to yourself and your craft is special – discuss with your class what makes them get “In the Zone”.
Studies show being physically active improves mental wellbeing and health. It’s important to address how being at home and not able to play outside or do various activities limits activity levels. During Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week introduce your students to the following:
- meditation, dance and yoga classes to express feelings
- Cyber Coach- online virtual dance instructors supporting everyone to deliver fun physical activity with confidence and enthusiasm
- after the activity discuss how the pupils feel – less stressed? More awake?
To give a little in this trying time could mean a huge amount to someone. It is said that giving to others makes us feel better. As part of Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week look at the ways students can make small gestures to their community while also keeping safe.
- send a card to a neighbour
- send a card to NHS or other key workers thanking them for all their hard work
- give time to doing chores at home
Note the difference this has made – the impact on others and how it makes your pupils feel to give a little of their time or care to others.
It’s important to take notice of how we feel from a young age.
- Get students to make a journal of how they have felt each day of the week (happy, sad etc.) how did each feeling or action come about and how did they resolve or feel about their emotions and did their emotions effect others?
- Discuss why it is important to talk about feelings, check out Dr. Radha Moghil who explores a whole range of feelings and emotions, as well as providing talking points and tools to feel better.
- Discuss why it is important to feel different types of emotions and why you might feel like that. To establish each emotion, Disney Pixar’s Inside Out displays emotions perfectly and how a child can experience different feelings throughout their life, but all are needed to have a healthy mind set.
Guess The Feelings Video
Each Emotion is Important Video