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I will try to create more happiness and less unhappiness in the world around me
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In partnership with the National Children's Bureau (NCB) we plan to
launch an 'Action for Happiness in Schools' initiative. The aim is
to create a movement of schools that are genuinely committed to
putting happiness and well-being at the heart of their ethos and
The planned initiative is likely to involve three main components:
The overall objective is to encourage more schools to take practical steps both to increase well-being for all within the school and also to equip children with the essential skills they need to live a happy life. For example, this could include reviewing the school's vision and purpose, developing ways to engage the whole school community in well-being initiatives or introducing new evidence-based programmes as part of the curriculum.
We have engaged over 50 stakeholders in developing this idea. On 28 July we held an initial workshop to discuss with a range of headteachers, expert practitioners and organisations with related interests (e.g. PSHE Association, Young Minds, Institute of Education).
There was strong support for the idea and a working group is being established to agree details ahead of a launch in late 2011.
Below are links to the key documents from the initial Action for Happiness in Schools workshop:
Note: these documents are in PDF form so you will need Acrobat Reader to view them. To download local copies right-click on the links and choose "save as".
If you'd like to get more closely involved in developing or participating in the Action for Happiness in schools initiative please get in touch using the Contact Us form and mark your message for the attention of Paul Adnitt.
Below are links to various reports, websites, books and other resources relating to teaching happiness and well-being in schools.
Well-being and Resilience in Schools
Mindfulness in Schools
Schools have a vital role in helping children develop
the capabilities to lead happy lives
Recent decades have seen big increases in the proportion of
young people with emotional and behavioural issues. Mental health
problems are increasingly prevalent, with 20% of children
experiencing such issues each year. These problems affect other
areas of a child's life and also increase the likelihood of mental
health difficulties later on in adult life.
Schools experience the day-to-day reality of these issues but
are also vital in combating them and promoting good emotional
health. Our vision is for a movement of schools placing happiness
and well-being at the heart of their ethos and culture, and
proactively sharing their approaches with others.
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We’ll be in touch soon to give you updates on how the movement is growing