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Pupil Wellbeing in Primary School

Chris Pooley
Chris Pooley (16 posts) Head of Primary View Profile

To ensure that maximum learning is achieved and the whole child is nurtured, the importance of balance and a blended approach by professionals who know the children in their class as individuals are key.

paint fight

Education at NAIS Manila goes way beyond the traditional model. Whilst all areas of the curriculum are covered, the wellbeing of children remains our focus.

As a school we are proud of the quality and content that pupils are sending every day during their Virtual Schooling. In the most challenging and unusual of circumstances, children and parents are possibly more creative than ever!

zhon rhys painting

As a team we meet regularly and wellbeing is always the first item on the agenda. Whilst some of the activities may be seen as ‘fun activities’ there is a great deal of research, collaboration, and deliberate choice when teachers at NAIS Manila plan our Virtual Schooling. I have included a small selection of the many fantastic, proactive approaches to pupil wellbeing throughout our Primary School.

  • Regular Brain Breaks - short mental break that is taken during regular intervals in between lessons, or even during them. These could be simple yoga stretches or following Ms. De Guzman’s movement videos, and the teachers also do these!
  • Choice and Freedom - creating healthy and mindful activities throughout our Virtual Schooling that allow the children the independence to choose which activity they would like to do, guiding them to make decisions for themselves and teaching them to become open-minded and responsible.
gaku&gari
  • Showing gratitude - Fostering positive emotion helps to rewire our brains away from negative thoughts. This is particularly important at a time when pupils could have been overexposed to the news or dealing with difficult situations. This may be in the form of a letter to a Frontliner, Mother’s Day cards or students leaving a secret message for someone in their household. 
rock&kato ty cards
  • Staying Connected - Over the Easter holidays, we created the Be Ambitious challenges to keep the children entertained - as well as encouraging them to develop their creativity. Our teachers did these in their own time, in an effort to keep their students connected. 
  • Being Creative - Mindfulness tasks including colouring or making calming and thankful jars
thankful jars

It’s Good to Talk - Starting the popular ‘hangout’ calls twice a day has been a huge success. The excitement can be seen on the faces of the children and these calls have had a positive impact on pupil wellbeing. This positive interaction then continues on our Google Classroom stream where students often leave positive feedback on Virtual Schooling or posts from other children.

y3b group call

Celebrating - Not only do students receive constructive feedback and positive praise on good work, but we also use Google Classroom and NAIS Manila social media sites to showcase exemplary work and outstanding effort. For students that have really gone the extra mile with their assignments we have a Student of the Week Certificate, which is also uploaded to these platforms. We send reward emails to parents and students in recognition of outstanding individual effort.

When thinking of wellbeing, we are also proactive where it comes to our staff. As a school we are currently having to be a little more creative in the way we promote wellbeing amongst our teachers, many of whom are far away from home and their families. Staff video challenges, pizza delivery, 30-day fitness challenges and Come Dine With Me may well be thinking outside the box, but it certainly helps to keep staff morale high.

As a general rule, teachers are often a humble breed. Worrying more about the children in their care than themselves. However, over recent weeks it has been clear to see the pride, delight and uplifting impact positive emails from parents and comments through our recent Virtual Schooling Survey (a few highlights are included below) have had on our teaching staff. I can’t thank parents enough, for taking the time to praise our fantastic staff.

"Our teacher is fantastic!"
 
"You are doing more than we can expect!"
 
"The video calls have been great for my child - Just the right balance of interaction/collaboration and not too much screen time."
 
Thank you for your strong support during this difficult situation.
 
"I appreciate all the continued hard work the staff and teachers are doing for the school and the students in this most difficult time. We are blessed!"
 
"Our class teacher is doing an amazing job!"
 
"We appreciate the variety of activities. The daily calls from their teachers helped the kids to be engaged and we also appreciate the feedback provided. It helps the kids to work harder and better."

 

It is clear to see that many of us are learning so much, from being placed in a situation that we didn’t choose. One of the most pleasing aspects to come out of this for me will be the importance some parents now place on subjects and areas that they may have not thought were as important before. Subjects like art, drama, P.E., and music are now seen as key in proactively promoting wellbeing in children – Something that many of us have said for quite some time!

Please take the very best of care.
 - Chris


 

If you want to know more about our school's Primary School Programme, we are currently offering Virtual Discovery Meetings.

Make an appointment today to speak with our Admissions Team online, discuss with them your child’s learning needs and how we can meet them, and enjoy a multi-media introduction to our teachers, students, and facilities.

Click the link below to book your Virtual Discovery Meeting today.

NAIS Manila Virtual Discovery Meeting

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