How we’re working with The Mind Map charity to support mental health
At Pilgrims School, the mental health and wellbeing of our pupils is just as important as their education. Here, Headteacher Mrs Webster explains why they’re working alongside The Mind Map charity to provide support for children and parents during this difficult time.
Coronavirus is something that didn’t exist a year ago. And we, as adults, don’t fully understand it – so how can we expect children to? A few months ago, the children’s usual routine completely changed and we are very mindful of the effects that this dramatic change can have on young children.
We have worked closely with The Mind Map over the last two years to introduce a Well-Being and Resilience programme within the school. We had already introduced new initiatives to encourage children to talk about their feelings, we keep parents up-to-date by running assemblies and workshops and work alongside teachers and staff to ensure we are providing the correct support to those children who need it, where necessary.
During this period of uncertainty, they have now provided parents with lots of tips and advice on how to manage anxiety and worry which we share via our weekly newsletters. Our Pastoral & SEND Co-Ordinator, Mrs Morales, has her own ‘Well-Being Blog’ within these newsletters and they are proving extremely popular with both parents and their children.
Some of the suggestions so far have included making a ‘Worry Box’ to store children’s worries and allocating a certain time each day to discuss these, as well as reading books and articles like Molly Watts’ ‘Dave the Dog is worried about Coronavirus’ to help them to better understand what’s going on.
It’s also important to spend as much quality time as possible as a family, and enjoy doing activities together in the evenings and at weekends.
One of the best ways to help with mental health is going for regular walks – as the fresh air is great for taking your mind off things and lifting your mood. Why not take your child’s learning into the garden, if the weather is nice?
We miss you!
The lockdown has meant that virtual learning has replaced our normal school curriculum over the last few months and although this means we are spending extra time with our families, we are missing all our friends and teachers.
Following the Government’s recent announcement about re-opening schools, we are working hard to ensure we can deliver a safe and secure environment to do this, in line with the guidance provided. We hope it won’t be long before we can welcome our families back to Pilgrims, albeit in a slightly different way.
In the meantime, if you have any questions or need any advice about how to talk to your children about coronavirus, please visit the coronavirus page on our website. This contains useful downloads, advice and tips as well as some activity ideas to enjoy in your free time while in lockdown.