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St Ives School's Festival Benefits Pupils' Wellbeing

Liza Askew / Categories: In the press

St Ives School's Festival Benefits Pupils' Wellbeing

St Ives is aware that their pupils are living in an ever-increasingly frenetic world and believes it is essential to equip the children with the skills they need to learn how to slow down, take care of themselves and find peace.  Being in nature formed a large part of the wellbeing festival, based on the quote by Maxime Lagace which states that ‘by discovering nature, you discover yourself’ and the children enjoyed spending time in the school’s 8-acre grounds.  They learnt how to forest bathe, the Japanese practice of being calm and quiet amongst trees and observing nature.  It is a great way to de-stress and boost health.  They also enjoyed sensory grounding sessions where they removed their socks and felt the forest floor with bare feet, a great way to use one’s senses to regain control of one’s body when feeling anxious or overwhelmed.  The children also made autumn wreaths and painted the logs that make up the St Ives friendship circle with messages of kindness and support for each other.  Music and drama workshops also took place outside despite the inclement weather, as well as yoga sessions for pupils of all ages.  The children also connected with animals with a trip to Hayling Island Donkey Sanctuary for the younger pupils, whilst the older children walked Alpacas at Our Back Garden in Westbourne.

Connecting with others and being part of a community was also a theme running throughout the wellbeing festival.  Pupils in Years 3 and 4 visited the residents of Redcot Care Home, fully equipped with board games & books, which the children and the residents really enjoyed.  They also took part in a litter pick, working with Love Haslemere Hate Waste, during which they filled their bin bags with litter, appreciating they were improving the countryside for others to enjoy. 

Kay Goldsworthy, Head at St Ives, said: “Wellbeing and the ability to manage our own mental health is becoming more and more important in an ever-increasingly busy world.  Teaching our children the skills they may need in the future to manage stress and their busy lives is a key part of our outstanding pastoral care at St Ives and I have been so delighted to watch the children taking part in such a multitude of activities in the last few days that will equip them for life.” 

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