We had our first Wellness Week last week and by all accounts it was a big hit for our pupils and staff. The aim was to highlight the importance of looking after our mental health in addition to our fitness and eating habits. Organised by Mrs. Barry, each day had a theme. Mindfulness Monday gave the children an opportunity to engage in mindfulness, meditations, yoga and art activities. Joanne Dee facilitated a guided meditation session during Junior assembly.
Ms. Quinn acted as DJ for Tunes on Tuesday at assembly and classes were asked to play some feel-good tunes during recess times on the day. Jack Frost upset our Walk on Wednesday plans, however teachers were very creative in carrying out other exercises in-class including the use of Cosmic Yoga on the interactive whiteboards, a big hit with the infants in particular.
Talk about it Thursday encouraged teachers to engage with their students on different mental health topics, using resources in their packs. The book ‘Have you filled a bucket today’ was explored in every class with children being encouraged to be ‘bucket fillers’ as opposed to ‘bucket dippers’!!
Each class received a tasty fruit platter kindly sponsored by Glanmore Foods for Fruity Friday. Junior and Senior infant children were given a warm welcome by Conor and all his staff during visits to The Country Store where varying fruit and vegetables were discussed. A huge thank you to all at The Country Store.
The girls from 3rd to 6th Classes were very lucky to have a talk by Mind Gym founder Niamh Connolly. Niamh is a cognitive behavioural therapist and was a fountain of knowledge and positivity for our girls. A huge thank you to Niamh for taking time out of her busy schedule to come and talk to us and to Ms. Hickey for organising the visit. Joanne Dee also made made time to visit each class during the week to talk about emotions, coping skills and facilitate some meditation. Thank you so much Joanne for all your help during the week. 2nd Class began their parent and child healthy family cooking sessions, organised by Margaret Curran.
Children from 5th and 6th classes were invited to make resiliance boxes, full of special momentos that may help them when they’re not feeling themselves. The girls created beautiful boxes, containing photos, DVDs, beauty treatments and of course chocolate!
We had some fantastic entries to the Positive Thoughts Art Competition. The effort put in is to be commended. Winners included Nicole, Sophie and Cassie who created a beautiful hat to celebrate the joy and positivity the late Mad Hatter gave to so many people. Kaja worked with her parents to create an impressive collage citing “Every day may not be good but there is good in every day”. Alanah used paper and card to represent “We can complain that rose bushes have thorns or rejoice that thorn bushes have roses”. Emilie reminded us that “Every cloud has a silver lining” while Angelina’s piece portrayed the importance of realising a person may look happy on the outside yet be troubled on the inside. We were all blown away by the entries and a huge thank you to all who took part. Winners received a cinema voucher kindly sponsored by Eugene at SGC and a cup with hot chocolate ingredients, the ultimate feel good treat!
Classes got the opportunity to watch movie Inside Out which deals with all the emotions we may encounter on a daily basis. Younger pupils were encouraged to bring a cuddly movie buddy to school with them.
Thank you to all the teachers in St. Marys who were so supportive and helpful during Wellness Week. Also well done to all our children who were very open and enthusiastic about content that can be challenging to delve into.