Children’s Mental Health Week
This week (6th to 12th February 2023) is Children’s Mental Health Week, and the theme is ‘Let’s Connect’. We want to help by offering free access to our Mental Health Resources to all schools throughout the week.
Children’s Mental Health Week was created by the charity Place2Be. The intention of the theme is to encourage people to connect with others in healthy, rewarding, and meaningful ways.
Just sign up as a free member and you will have access to our Mental Health resources. No commitment to payment is required with our free membership.
We know it can be difficult to address mental health without making children feel embarrassed and unwilling to talk about their feelings. So, we have created some fun activities to help children understand mental health and evaluate their own mental wellbeing, without thinking too hard about it.
These lively games will introduce primary school pupils to mental health and wellbeing in a fun, zero pressured, and active way.
Children’s Mental Health
According to the latest NHS figures, more than 400,000 children per month are being treated for mental health problems. This is a worrying record-high for our next generation, and unsustainable for the NHS.
Additionally, over 1 million children have a probable mental health problem. Primary schools have a role to play to help reduce these numbers.
Talking is Important
Everyone has mental health. It’s important to openly discuss mental health, just like physical health. Mental health is about how we feel, how we cope with things and what we think. It can be affected by our environment, the people around us, and how we perceive ourselves and others.
Feeling sad, worried or angry are completely normal feelings, but when these feelings last for long periods of time, or become more frequent, it could mean there is a mental health problem. Everyone deals with things differently, and some children have more resilience, or bounce back from these feelings better than others. But how do we know without talking to our children?
Latest statistics show that 1 in 6 children have mental health problems, and this number is on the increase.
A survey published in 2022 by Place2Be and the National Association of Head Teachers found that the number of pupils in school with mental health problems had massively increased throughout the school year in areas such as depression, low self esteem and feelings of anger.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) says child mental health problems are more likely to occur in unhealthy functioning family homes, homes where income is an issue, and in children whose parents suffer with poor mental health.
Talking about mental health can help children understand the problems and allow them to find ways of coping. This can often be talking to a friend or family member or teacher, but if these problems continue, talking to a professional may be required.
If we can begin to normalise talking about mental health in primary schools, and raise awareness through conversations and activities, children may be able to figure out ways of coping without the need for professionals. We have created a Child Mental Health and Wellbeing Programme to introduce mental health to children and unlock the stigma of mental health amongst children. This wellbeing resource uses fun, active games and activities to understand, discuss and evaluate themselves and their feelings. And, you can access the resource for free this week only (6th to 12th February 2023).
For Children’s Mental Health Week, Place2Be are encouraging schools to take part in ‘Dress to Express’. This is a non uniform day, on Friday 10th February, to help raise funds for the charity. Children come to school in their favourite colour, a unique outfit, or clothes that describes how they are feeling. The idea is to celebrate emotions and start conversations around thinking and feeling.
If you are taking part in Children’s Mental Health Week, we’d love to hear about your plans! Feel free to tag us on our socials!
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