Positive Mental Health
At Lady Elizabeth Hastings' School, we are committed to supporting the health and wellbeing of our children and staff to ensure that the school is a community where everyone feels able to shine. Positive mental wellbeing is essential if children and young people are to flourish and lead fulfilling lives.
We want everyone involved in our school family to be emotionally and mentally healthy. This means supporting them to becoming resilient with the ability to recognise how to proactively care for their emotional health, as they would do for their physical health. It also means recognising that mental health changes just as physical health does sometimes over time and on other occasions in an instant. Support for mental health, just as for physical, comes in many different forms from many different sources all of which have value and can play a role.
Mental Health, wellbeing and the curriculum
As part of our Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) curriculum, all children participate in the MindMate Programme. MindMate is a preventative programme based on educating the children with coping strategies, for both now and the future, whilst developing emotional literacy skills and fostering resilience. Our MindMate lessons provide the children with useful, practical self-help skills to enhance their mental health. The MindMate curriculum also promotes good relationships, and encourages the children to become comfortable with their feelings as well as cope with life changes and the more challenging aspects of life that can affect mental health. There are six main themes that underpin the Mind Mate programme; Feeling Good & Being Me, Friends and Family, Life Changes, Strong Emotions, Being the Same and Being Different and Solving Problems. Each half term our children participate in a lesson on each theme. Mind Mate is a spiral curriculum, which means the children will then re-visit the same themes, each year, in greater depth.
There are also MindMate resources for parents available here: I'm a parent or carer - MindMate
We also use Picture News weekly. This resource provides an opportunity for the children to learn from our world and to develop respect for other people’s beliefs, feeling and faiths through discussion and challenge. Both Picture News and our daily act of worship, regularly provides opportunities for children to discuss wellbeing, feelings and growth mind-set. Through our work and training with the Diocese of York, as a school we are currently working on developing our shared understanding of Spirituality and linking this to our whole school approach to mental health and wellbeing.
In addition to our PSHE/ MindMate curriculum for all, we have a number of small groups taking place throughout the week for those children who need some extra support. These include an anxiety and wellbeing group, a friendship group and an emotional literacy group. These groups help the children identify how their body and mind is reacting to situations and give them an opportunity to talk about their feelings as well as practical strategies and coping mechanisms which they can use when needed.
Support from external partners
As a school we are part of a family (cluster) of 16 other schools called EPOSS. EPOSS have a central team made up of a family support worker, emotional wellbeing practitioner, and counsellor and attendance officer. As a school we are able to seek support from our EPOSS partners and make referrals if required with the consent of parents.
Mental Health First Aider/ School Governor
Mrs Katie Tait who is our lead in Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education (PSHE) is also our designated Mental Health First Aider. She is currently working towards the school gaining accreditation for our work with Mind Mate.
Our dedicated governor for both staff and pupil mental health and well-being is Mr Mark Wake.
It’s the wellbeing governor’s role to help support the embedding of mental health and wellbeing provision across the entire school.
Zones of Regulation
At Lady Elizabeth Hastings' we use a social-emotional learning resource called 'Zones of Regulation' throughout school. Zones of Regulation helps children to develop an awareness of feelings, energy and alertness levels while exploring a variety of tools and strategies to self-regulate emotions. It provides a child-friendly way to think and talk about how we feel on the inside and sort these feelings into four coloured Zones, all of which we go through in life as children (and as adults). In addition to addressing self-regulation, the children gain an increased vocabulary of emotional terms, skills in reading other people’s facial expressions and a perspective on how others see and react to our feelings. children throughout school learn to understand, name and recognise these feelings and zones, whilst thinking of tools strategies to manage difficult emotions or 'big' feelings. Each class have created their own classroom zones display, so that all children can access this resource whenever they need to.