At the end of last year, we highlighted our focus on ‘Being Well, Doing Well’ one of our key projects and initiatives that are enabling us as a community to work towards our school vision; “We are determined to create a school where everyone is confident and able to take control of their own learning, and the world is our classroom.”
Today, we wanted to highlight the passionate work of Ms. Morf-Teter and Ms. Uhlenhake to support this visible wellbeing work for our ASH students. Plus the happy coincidence of work being done by Ms. Gardner in the high school to support student mental health and a growth mindset. Physical bulletin boards have been set up in the high school and students (when they were able to be on campus) were encouraged to engage with these boards, share their ideas with their peers and reflect on the thoughts of others.
Ms. Morf-Teter explained to us how she and Ms. Uhlenhake were inspired to create the interactive bulletin boards through their work as part of the DASH team (the steering committee/pilot group working on visible wellbeing at ASH). “We learned about the 6 pathways to wellbeing that Dr. Lea Waters identified in her research. The bulletin boards are a first step (and hopefully one of many ways) to make them visible at ASH.” One of these boards was in support of emotions literacy, inviting “students, teachers and staff to a playful exploration of how they are feeling right now. We ask everyone to take a moment to check in with themselves and to place a pin onto the board next to the feeling that resonates best at the moment.”
The topic of another board - ‘Take What You Need’ was about students taking a post-it note if it speaks to them. The purpose of this board is for “students to take ownership of their wellbeing and start by acknowledging what they are looking for. We also had students asking us for post-it notes so they can create their own little take-aways for other students.” Ms. Morf-Teter spoke about one of their hopes in the future is for students to also be the ones coming up with ideas for different boards, further taking ownership of their learning and wellbeing.
When we asked Ms. Gardner about the boards she set up, she told us that she has “done a lot of boards over the years and each and every one has been to share/showcase something that is important and hope that it would have a positive impact on the community.” In the instance of the two topics she set up recently; it was to support students’ desires to increase awareness of our mental health and to physically illustrate the work being done by the high school faculty around a growth mindset.
These physical reminders of our community’s visible wellbeing are so important and while many of us cannot be on campus we wanted to share just a small selection of the amazing work and thoughtfulness that has gone into these: