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Wellbeing: The importance of a good night's sleep

We were delighted to welcome Dr Jane Shadwell-Li from Family Medical Practice who addressed our Year 10 students on the importance of good sleep hygiene.

This was part of a series of lessons built around the theme of ‘Resilience & Motivation’ which will continue until the end of Term 2. As the students embark on their two year IGCSE course and the undoubted challenges that lie ahead, the aim of the lessons is to provide the students with the knowledge and strengths to draw on in times of adversity and enable them to flourish and thrive over the next two years and beyond.

In her presentation, Dr Jane emphasised the vital role that sleep plays in our lives and the negative implications of not getting enough. It is widely recognised that teens require 8-10 hours of good quality sleep every night to support both their physical growth and brain development. 

She identified some key areas relevant to our students;

·         Good quality sleep improves logical reasoning, cognitive flexibility, memory and the ability to form complex sentences; all essential mental functions required throughout the IGCSE course and beyond.

·         Sleep is important for processing and retaining what we learn in the day time; in our sleep neurons build connections of learning that we can recall when the situation arises.

·         Good quality sleep can reduce risk taking behaviour and reduce overconfident, impulsive decision making.

·         Good sleep helps us build our immune system, making us less prone to getting ill.

·         A lack of sleep can lead to a negative relationship with food; possible leading to overeating. 

·         Good quality sleep is also good for the skin, enabling us to get rid of toxins that we are exposed to daily.

Wellbeing: the importance of sleep

Dr Jane presented a number of ways in which we can all improve the quality and quantity of the sleep we get:

·         Try sleeping in an appropriately lit room

·         Avoid noises that may disturb your sleep 

·         Make sure your bed is used primarily for sleep and avoid working or eating in your bed.

·         Try to keep a regular sleep schedule throughout the week.

·         Don’t sleep in more on the weekends so that you don’t throw off your sleep schedule.

·         Avoid eating snacks or using caffeine close to bedtime.

·         Try not to use cell phones and laptops right before bed, if you do, use the night option that changes screen color and minimizes melatonin-suppressing light.

We will continue to build on the important message of sleep to help our students achieve balance over the next two years and beyond; great academic outcomes, positive wellbeing and character development.

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)


Wellbeing: the importance of sleep