This year more than any other it is important that we are aware of the mental health and wellbeing of the pupils. Everyone’s lives will be affected in different ways by the global pandemic. It is hard for adults to understand, which cascades understandably down to our children.
School staff and parent/carers can help build the wellbeing and resilience of children as part of their everyday lives.
The nations theme this year is Express Yourself
This includes finding ways to express yourself through sharing feelings and ideas through creativity. It is not about being good at one aspect of creativity more of showing who you are and how you see the world which makes you feel good.
With this in mind I have gathered together 5 days of wellbeing activities starting on Monday 1st Feb which link to most primary school values within each school in Grantham
The values are HOPE, HONESTY, FRIENDSHIP, FORGIVENESS, AND PERSEVERANCE.
These activities can be completed anytime, not just on the day I suggest. They require the minimum of resources to make sure everyone can participate. It would be great if the children or yourselves felt able to send in pictures which we can put on our LightSpace feed and ‘let your light shine’ within Grantham.
Monday 1st February – Hope
Hope is a great value because as well as being a positive life skill to have. It is also a Christian value helping us to look forward.
The dictionary definition of Hope is to want something to happen or to be true
For children – this is an inspiration and encouraging value to help them seek solutions with a greater outlook on life and a greater sense of self-esteem.
We can find personal hopes for 2021.
Hope is everywhere we look in nature. From a tiny tree sapling stretching up into the sky hoping to find sunlight, to a squirrel scurrying around the woods always hopeful that he finds some nuts.
For today’s activity please take a walk outdoors to an area of beauty. Take time to look for some new plants growing and see if you can spot any wildlife along the way.
When you find a suitable spot, ask your adult to help you clear an area on the floor. Use leaves, flowers, sticks and rocks to make a nature picture to show something you may hope for in 2021. Frame it if you can with natural items. It could be a picture of a new pet you may hope to own, or you playing with a new friend you may hope to make once school is back to normal. Alternatively, you can spend time creating a pattern or shape with the natural resources.
Send your creative artwork into the LightSpace email address to be shared on our Facebook page and twitter page
Tuesday 2nd Feb Honesty
I picked ‘Honesty’ as one our values because being honest is a life-long personal skill to be used in home, school, work, everyday situations. It is not always easy and sometimes children will worry about repercussions and this prevents them from always being honest. If they are listened to and they in turn learn from their mistakes, it will provide them with greater security in being able to be honest in future times. It will also help them to learn about consequences for their actions. The quality of being honest develops good character, friendship skills and confidence.
Being honest means that you admit to your actions or what you have said truthfully, even if sometimes it means you will get into trouble.
Children like to hear about their parents and family members life stories, from the present day or when they were younger.
This activity will involve the adults being honest and the children bringing out their creative acting side and role-playing pretending to interview their adults and feeling like ‘detectives’. The children could prepare props such as making a microphone or setting the lounge up as a chat-show style tv programme where everyone can wear their best celebrity clothes!
The scenario can then be reversed, and the questions turned around on the children with a similar theme where the children can have a turn at answering as honestly as possible.
Suggested Detective questions
- What is your favourite food to eat?
- What is the name of your favourite book or magazine to read?
- Who is your best friend and why do you like them?
- What makes you grumpy?
- What was your favourite lesson at school?
- What makes you happy?
- Did you have pets as a child?
- Did you enjoy sports as a child?
- What is your happiest memory from school?
- Where was your first job?
- Who was your favourite teachers and why?
- What makes you sad?
- When was the last time you cried?
Wednesday 3rd Feb Friendship
‘Friendship’ as one our values because it is a life skill that everyone has to learn and will greatly benefit from. For young children it can be tricky, balancing compromise, trust, being kind and supportive whilst having fun and building fantastic memories at the same time. Experience has shown us that pupils, who have a wide social circle, become naturally more confident learners and are easier to adapt to new situations.
Children can use their art skills to create a picture of a good friend. These pictures can be drawn, painted, sketched or decorated with collage materials. Be as creative as possible – _use the back of some spare wallpaper to make a life-size friend or use a cardboard box to make a 3D online screen friend. Once children have created their friend, they can then think about what qualities they would like their friend to have, for instance; someone that will play fairly, be kind, share, be supportive and be fun. Please see the table at the end of this page to help with conversation starters. The positive statements could be cut out or copied onto their friendship pictures to help remind them of what makes a good friend.
To extend this activity further, children can explain their best qualities to parents and carers and think about areas they would like to improve with their own skills and friendships. The activity can be simplified for younger children by talking through the qualities in a simplistic manner
Can you pick out the positive friendship qualities from this list below
- Someone who keeps their promises
- Someone who calls you names
- Someone who is caring
- Someone who hurts your feelings
- Someone who always makes you play their games
- Someone who has good manners
- Someone who says unkind things
- Someone who always has to go first at everything
- Someone who says kind things
- Someone who physically hurts you.
- Someone you can trust
- Someone who shows kindness
- Someone who doesn’t listen to your opinions
- Someone who likes to share
- Someone who breaks promises
- Someone who leaves you out of games and chats
- Someone who gets you into trouble
- Someone who takes turns
- Someone who is honest
- Someone who plays fairly
- Someone who listens to you
- Someone who won’t let you play
- Someone who doesn’t tell the truth
- Someone who invites you to play.
Thursday 4th Feb. Forgiveness
Forgiveness is one our Values because learning how to respond appropriately to a negative situation is intricate into Christian life. The word forgive means to wipe the slate clean and to stop blaming someone or feel upset towards someone for something they have said or done. This does not mean that it is instantly forgotten but it shows an act of love, mercy and grace.
Our families have usually been the first people to show us forgiveness when we were little. Our families are our strong basis for how we learn to be around others. Showing remorse can help children solve problems in a peaceful manner when there has been conflict or if they have made a mistake and need to put things right.
Sometimes we need to say ‘Sorry and show that we mean it. We can do this in many ways.
For instance, we can help people or do a kind action for someone if they have been upset. We can try to fix an item, or help pay towards it, if something has been broken. We can spend time with people to show we care, and we want to put things right.
There are also times when it is thought children may have done something wrong but this may not be the case and they just need to explain themselves in a clear calm way.
Look at the different scenarios at the bottom of this page and discuss a plan of action they would do for each section with their adult at home. Children can express themselves in a creative poem around the subject of ‘Forgiveness. There is a poem template at the end of this page.
What would you do in these situations? Look at these examples – discuss with an adult, if these are the scenarios you may need to show forgiveness for or if you need to explain yourself in a clear, calm, manner.
- You and your brother want to watch different things on the TV at the same time.
- It’s your friend’s birthday and you cannot afford to buy them a present
- You hid your brothers’ toy because he shouted at you.
- In the morning you are running late for school but you really want to finish making a model.
- Your mum told you off for something you didn’t do
- You’re playing at your friend’s house and your accidentally break a vase.
- Write some creative poetry to express yourself.
Write a creative acrostic poem around forgiveness. Use the first letter of the poem.
O= only say sorry if you really mean it.
Friday 5th Feb Perseverance
We chose Perseverance as our fifth and final values as we think it is important for children to learn not to give up if they come across any obstacles but find a way round them or a solution.
The dictionary definition of perseverance means to continue or repeat behaviour even if the going gets tough. We often have to persevere to learn a new skill or understand something. This is a good character trait to develop in childhood as it can be a lifelong skill. Children who learn to persevere become more confident in their own abilities to problem solve when they reach barriers in their life. It is important for children to see their family adults have a go at things and not always succeed first time, this modelling can help children understand everyone sometimes needs to work at things to succeed.
To help children learn about persevering it is essential when setting an activity that the challenge is pitched correctly for individual children so the chances of them completing the activity with effort will be reasonably secure.
Find a board game at home or a craft activity you enjoy, or even build with some Lego. At first the activity feels easy, but perseverance is needed to keep going and finish. Lots of fun will be had but no-one is allowed to give up until what you are doing is finished!