As I am sure many of you are aware, at the beginning of this academic year, the children in year 6 started attending weekly mindfulness sessions led by mindfulness coach Sheens Shah. Mindfulness involves children learning relaxation techniques and helping children to develop concentration and self-awareness. It is designed to help them learn techniques to help them de-stress and to improve their self-esteem. Over the course of the last week, there has been a lot in the press about children’s mental health and the pressures on them today. As a school, we believe teaching social and emotional skills are as important as the academic ones and will be looking to roll out this programme to other year groups over the course of the year. We are also investigating sessions for teachers! If you, as parents or carers, are interested in sessions, maybe alongside your child, please let me know.
We are delighted that the Chronicle and Echo came in to see one of our sessions last week and have published an online article. ( https://www.northamptonchron.co.uk/news/pupils-taught-self-importance-in-northamptonshire-school-mindfulness-sessions-1-8714215)
Later this week, the are publishing a broader piece about our sessions in the context of children’s mental health. They are looking for parent testimonials about our sessions or views about it. If you have anything you would like to share please do let me know.
In the meantime, we will continue to put the teaching of mindfulness high on our agenda with the view that we want children to be healthy and happy, not just now but for the rest of their lives. Teaching them about relaxation and self-worth early will hopefully help them to do just that.
I am sure you have all seen the beautiful display of poppies at the front of the school. Thanks to a wonderful team of hardworking parents, each child made at least one poppy for our Remembrance Day Assembly. We were really pleased that so many parents, carers, friends and family were able to join us on this important occasion and hope that you felt as moved as we did when the children sang and spoke about the brave soldiers who fought for our country. We also enjoyed the reading of a poem and some beautiful bell ringing from our Year 6 children, led by Mrs Dyson, which really set the tone for our assembly. It was a very special afternoon to mark a very special event in history.
I have received many emails for members of the public and passers-by who have commented on the beauty of the display. Many have said how pleasing it is that our school has committed to remembering the bravery of all soldiers and to ensuring such a key moment in history is remembered, learnt from and commemorated by all members of our school community.
Thank you also to Yardley Arts, who provided the silhouette of the soldier that accompanies the poppy display. We are very pleased to be working with Yardley Arts to enhance the art provision for children in the school. Last week, all of the Key Stage Two children had the opportunity to learn some observational drawing skills using the Yardley Arts facilities and expertise. The resulting work and exhibition were very impressive and it was lovely to see so many parents as they opened their doors on Thursday morning.
Thank you to all of you who called in for ‘Cake and Catch Up’ on Friday and to support the FOYs second hand book sale. It was great to talk to you and hear you views. We will hold another one after Christmas but, in the meantime, please remember ‘my door is always open’ and I would love to hear from you!