Our school community came together to celebrate wellbeing this week. Everyone was invited to participate in a diverse range of events. Each day of the week was centred around one of the five elements of wellbeing: connect, be active, take notice, keep learning and give.
The beginning of our week was marked by an inspiring service from our school chaplain, who emphasised the significance of establishing connections with others. The chaplain highlighted that connecting with others is crucial for our overall wellbeing, as it helps us to feel supported, validated, and understood. Strong social connections provide us with a sense of belonging, boost our confidence, and foster positive relationships. Connecting with others is a vital aspect of our lives, and it is important that we make an effort to build meaningful relationships with those around us.
Highlights of the week included: a staff tea party, a dog walk, student boxercise classes, writing letters of gratitude, staff yoga, a book exchange, a mood-enhancing lunch menu, a charity bake sale and a junior student treasure hunt led by student ambassadors. While promoting wellbeing is integrated into our school culture, dedicating a week to the cause helps establish habits and encourages regular engagement in the five elements of wellbeing. Wellbeing Week serves as a reminder to prioritise self-care and to take time to focus on physical, mental and emotional health.
Miss Morgan provided excellent guidance to our student wellbeing leaders, who have been exceptional in their excitement and endeavours to organise activities for the community to participate in this week. We are lucky to have such a fantastic and proactive wellbeing group.
On Thursday, in alignment with the day’s theme of “keep learning,” we were honoured to host two esteemed experts at SVS. Téa Braun, the Chief Executive of the Human Dignity Trust, gave a captivating talk about the work of their organisation to defend the rights of LGBTQ+ individuals globally. She spoke about how they support court cases that challenge the persecution of people for their sexual orientation and shared insights into their efforts to promote equality and dignity for all.
The students and staff were thoroughly engaged with the presentations, as evidenced by the numerous thought-provoking questions posed during each session. We were deeply impressed by the level of interest and enthusiasm shown by the students and are grateful to Téa Braun for her enlightening and inspiring talk.
SVS also hosted a training event from Andrew Hampton, CEO of Girls on Board. 15 teachers from local senior and primary schools, along with some SVS staff, attended to learn about Andrew’s innovative approach to helping girls navigate friendships and the inevitable challenges that can arise from them. Girls on Board is an approach which helps girls, their parents and their teachers to understand the complexities and dynamics of girl friendships. The language, methods and ideas empower girls to solve their own friendship problems and recognise that they are usually the only ones who can.
As part of the day, Andrew also delivered a Girls on Board session to our Third Form girls with the delegates watching on. It was fascinating to watch the girls reflect on their friendships and role-play common scenarios that might affect them. By the end of the 45-minute session, the girls were clearly engaged, asking Andrew if they could have another session and spend a little longer considering how girl friendships work.
It was a great day for staff and students alike and a fitting part of Wellbeing week’s “keep learning” Thursday! If you would like to learn more about Andrew’s approach and methodology, his book When Girls Fall Out is a fascinating and eye-opening guide.