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Wellbeing at Oakwell Rise

10 Nov 2020   |   Claire Faxon   |   Oakwell Rise Primary Academy

The beginning of a new year is always exciting; reuniting with our colleagues, all that shiny new stock, and all those gorgeous smiles ready to start a new year of learning. This year was no different in so many ways.

There was just the small matter of an ongoing global pandemic and beginning the new year following six months like no other we had ever experienced. As we all carried on with our ‘new normal’ the wellbeing of both the adults and children throughout school was most definitely at the forefront of our minds.

The ‘5 Steps to Wellbeing’ as advocated by the NHS seemed a good place to start and from this we could establish what we could do at Oakwell Rise. The newly established Wellbeing Working Party, involving adults from across school, developed a plan that reflected what would be achievable and beneficial to all.

We decided to focus on one aspect of the Five Steps to Wellbeing each half term, with the hope that we could develop everyone’s internal wellbeing toolkits when they needed to. We also felt that music is a great way to release endorphins, so the team voted for a ‘team song’ that we can sing for those great moments and the moments which may challenge us. The votes were in, and ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy’ was at the top of the list!

But of course, it was not just the adults we were conscious of – the wellbeing of all those bundles of energy in school was also a priority. The children were invited to join us as we began to look more at what could help our wellbeing. The children nominated their ‘Wellbeing Warriors’ from each class who could also work to promote the 5 Steps to Wellbeing.

‘Taking Notice’ was our starting point. We decided to launch our initiative on ‘Feel Good Friday’ where everyone was invited to wear something yellow and ‘take notice’ of each other. Posters were created and shared throughout school providing top tips for the children. The Wellbeing Warriors have then been invited to plan the next half term’s focus, ‘Give’ where they can help organise a range of charitable activities for us all to participate in and then feel the personal benefits of what giving to others can give back to us. It is hoped that by equipping ourselves with these strategies and taking the time to focus on our wellbeing it will lead to more happiness and better health of everyone in school.

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