A Twickenham preparatory school is heading support for pupils’ wellbeing during the pandemic through digital lessons.
Newland House School, in Waldegrave Park, is one of the first schools in the country to enrol in Discovery Education’s health and relationships programme aimed at teaching pupils about mental health.
The curriculum shows children how to cope with change and the importance of friendships and families through videos and role-play activities.
A spokesperson for Newland House School said: “Children are growing up in an increasingly complex world and having to learn not only how to socialise in person but also online.
“The health and relationships programme has been a great vehicle for inspiring conversation and has also encouraged the children to come up with their own ideas for supporting each other.
“The way in which the children have adapted positively to the constant changes to their routines over the last year and the resilience and commitment demonstrated by staff has been instrumental in keeping the school running so successfully.
“Our home learning programme has provided children and families with a sense of routine and is helping them to maintain social contact and continue to feel part of the school community which is vitally important for their emotional and educational stability during this lockdown.”
Lessons also teach pupils where they can get support, how to treat each other with respect as well as the importance of honesty and personal privacy.
Gareth Roberts, leader of Richmond Council said: “As a father I’ve seen first hand how hard it is for children and young people to go through lockdown, spending so much time away from their friends and missing activities.
“It is incredibly hard for young children to understand why this has happened which is why it is so important and welcome that schools such as Newland House have taken the initiative and signed up to schemes such as these.”
Children’s mental health week took place on last week, with the theme being ‘Express Yourself’ to encourage children to share their thoughts and feelings through creativity.
Schools can sign up for free access to Discovery Education at: discoveryeducation.co.uk/rse