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Barley and Barkway (VA) Church of England First Schools Federation

‘Living Life in All Its Fullness’

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Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health

Mrs Naomi Gould – Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health LeadAt Barley and Barkway Church of England First Schools Federation, we are committed to supporting the emotional health and wellbeing of all our pupils, parents and carers, staff and governors.  

We have a supportive and caring ethos and our approach is respectful and kind, where each individual and contribution is valued. At our school we know that everyone experiences life challenges that can make us vulnerable and at times, anyone may need additional emotional support. We take the view that positive mental health is everybody’s business and that we all have a role to play. Good Mental Health is fundamental to be able to thrive in life. If we are not embedding Mental Health teaching and learning and resources and support within our school then we risk failing the next generation right at the start of their lives. We want our children to be literate and numerate with a wide knowledge and skills base. Alongside this, we want our children to develop their emotional intelligence. We take a holistic approach to each child in our care and we want to help them in every area of their development.

- Mrs Naomi Gould, Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health Lead

At school we provide learning opportunities.

We provide learning opportunities for children through regular teaching of PSHE (Personal, Social and Health Education) to develop their social skills, understanding what is and what is not appropriate within relationships and how to improve relationships.

We develope self-esteem and feelings of worth.

We develop children’s sense of self, boost their self-esteem and feelings of worth and importance within the school community and beyond into the wider world. We help children to develop emotional resilience and manage setbacks and we instil in our children the importance of helping others and to gain empathy for anyone in need.

We teach ways to improve wellbeing.

We teach our children practical ways they can improve their wellbeing on a daily basis such as getting enough sleep and mindfulness techniques as simple as taking some time to notice the natural world around them. We help children understand the link between physical exercise and good mental health and ensure they have a very active school life including PE, weekly dance sessions, active playtimes and lots of extra-curricular sporting opportunities.

We equip children with tools of self-awareness.

We aim to equip our children with tools of self-awareness so that they can reflect on their own state of Mental Health and know what the possible next steps are if they want to improve it; instilling the idea that talking about our Mental Health shows strength and not weakness. We encourage our children to be kind to each other and gain empathy for those who are facing Mental Health challenges. We want our children to understand that their actions can impact other’s mental health.

We work with the community.

We work with our local and wider communities to make a positive contribution to charities and individuals. Projects include the children working with residents at Margaret House Care home to enrich the lives of the older community and the young and Carol Singing outside Tesco, Royston.

We promote a mentally healthy environment through our school values and encouraging a sense of belonging for all.

We celebrate Mental Health and Wellbeing events such as World Mental Health Day #helloyellow, Just Talk week and Feeling Good week. We establishing opportunities for pupils to voice their own preferences and ideas regarding Mental Health and Wellbeing events and enrichment within our school. We celebrate achievements, academic and non-academic and provide opportunities to reflect. For more details on how we are embedding positive Emotional Wellbeing and good Mental Health into our school see the Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health policy.

Useful links

The following links may be useful for you if you are looking for information or support regarding your own or young peoples’ mental health and emotional wellbeing.

Living life in all its fullness. John 10