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Bystander or Upstander - which one are you?

On Tuesday I spoke at the Year 9 Parents Open morning and yet again I was delighted to see the positive reaction as I talked through the philosophy underpinning our new Wellbeing Curriculum.

Weekly Wellbeing - BIS HCMC

It has been a wonderful opportunity to address so many of you over the last few weeks and it was great to see the level of enthusiasm with which you all approached the short starter activity! To see so many of you so positively engaged in developing positive relationships and emotions with those sitting next to you really brought to life for all to see what we are doing in our Wellbeing Curriculum.  

Wellbeing Curriculum - BIS HCMC

It was great to walk around many of the Tutor classes this week and see Form Tutors and students engaged in their Wellbeing activities. A special mention must go to Mr Hodgson’s 11S class who had their whiteboards and pens out and were deeply engaged in identifying negative coping strategies they use to deal with stress and coming up with positive strategies they could use instead. 

Our Year 7 students explored the idea of ‘emotions’ in their Wellbeing lessons and the importance of both verbal and non-verbal methods of expressing emotions and feelings. It was wonderful to see 7H starting their lesson with an impromptu dance to Pharrel William’s song “Happy” and certainly impacted on positive emotions for the rest of the lesson!

Year 7 Weekly Wellbeing - BIS HCMC

The importance of sleep was the theme of the Year 10 Wellbeing lesson and built on the presentation by Dr Miguel from Family Medical Practice last week. The lessons this half term are all built around the concept of resilience as we focus on supporting the students to develop positive strategies to successfully navigate their IGCSE journey and beyond. Next week we will move on to look at the importance of good nutrition on supporting positive health before moving on to write individual “Wellbeing Plans” next half term.  

Weekly Wellbeing BIS HCMC

Our Year 8 students continued their series of lessons focusing on anti-bullying and it was fantastic to engage in so many intelligent and mature conversations around this important topic. The key theme this week was the importance of being an “Upstander” rather than a “Bystander” and the need to “Stop, Speak and Support” if we witnessed bullying occur in any form. I was delighted all our students aspired to be an “Upstander” and we explored the possible challenges to this and how they could be overcome. 


Someone who helps the person being bullied. This might be by reporting it to the teacher, asking if they’re alright after the incident or, if it’s safe and won’t escalate the situation, saying they don’t think it should be happening.


Someone who is around, not involved in bullying but knows it’s going on and/or sees it happening.

I hope you are having an opportunity to discuss the Wellbeing curriculum with your son or daughter and gain a greater understanding of the work they are doing during lessons and in Tutor Time. Should you have any feedback, please do not hesitate to contact me at

Mr Alexander, Head of Middle Secondary (Pastoral & Wellbeing)

Weekly Wellbeing - BIS HCMC

BIS HCMC Weekly Wellbeing

Year 8: Stop, Speak, Support - Weekly Wellbeing

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