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18/08/17

Retweeted From BlackheathHigh Sport

It's been a sunny, fun and busy morning so far! The girls are having a well earned lunch break before we head out f… https://t.co/28G8Ppaj7J

18/08/17

Ditches, fossils and Eco club - find out more in our 60s interview with Laboratory Technician, Mrs Birkett:… https://t.co/7LP8zCozw7

17/08/17

A record-breaking year for Blackheath High School: https://t.co/3XmLsslXPi

17/08/17

Retweeted From Carol Chandler-Thomp

39% A and A* for our Year 13s and a great range of courses this year, from Theoretical Physics to Middle Eastern St… https://t.co/0W1ptetFoO

17/08/17

Another great result - 88% A/A* in Extended Project Qualification AS-level https://t.co/a2BXYUsPpJ

17/08/17

Brilliant result from our hard working English Literature students - well done! https://t.co/EaAZ9eyvTU

17/08/17

75% of our university applicants have secured places universities - well done girls! https://t.co/jRlaOO7Q4k

17/08/17

A good year for our scholars including Lexey (pictured right), off to read French & Russian https://t.co/LfI5DuiSDw

17/08/17

Well done to all our girls, we're very proud of you! https://t.co/vDEeuDbR4M

17/08/17

Our linguists proudly bucking the national trend for decline in modern language study https://t.co/ecFCMxcxGS

17/08/17

Congratulations Nadia with an A* and two As - amazing achievement! https://t.co/MtvOKeOyXE

17/08/17

Big well done to Ella with an A* & two As, off to read Middle Eastern Studies ! https://t.co/WjyJpPCozJ

17/08/17

Congratulations Maya with a jaw dropping four A*s! https://t.co/IILsA6a0b3

17/08/17

They're here and we have our fingers crossed for you all! https://t.co/mzNwMsd1Yz

16/08/17

Retweeted From Sarah Skevington

Look what happens when Florence dog bumps into old friends in https://t.co/5fSqxsmaUZ

15/08/17

Retweeted From Sarah Skevington

Dropped into camp. Very happy girls having a break after full on morning… https://t.co/YwxDO3owPj

14/08/17

"Traditionally, Science is not seen as a girl’s subject but we're proud to be bucking that trend". Read more:… https://t.co/7Jbj1353u4

11/08/17

Mini beasts, sticks & mud pies? Our Nursery Nurse & Forest School Leader on the joys of learning:… https://t.co/DRuJAQGzxc

10/08/17

"Your mind is a palace". Our Head, Mrs Chandler-Thompson speaks about the mind, our one true constant:… https://t.co/GLtvnUbHrB

09/08/17

"Always follow your heart and chase your dreams". Lyra, Year 6, recounts her mum's words of wisdom:… https://t.co/qEAMyxs4g9

08/08/17

She was born over 250 years ago but there’s still something about Mary Wollstonecraft & her legacy lives on with us… https://t.co/KEU7gcdNz6

07/08/17

It's not all psychoanalysis and mind reading. We put the Spotlight firmly on the subject of Psychology:… https://t.co/6wt6NadGPq

04/08/17

What does our Deputy Head of Junior School really think about teaching? Mrs Gilfedder-Bonnar tells all in 60s:… https://t.co/pTobbd5NxC

03/08/17

Algorithms, boomerangs and custard for Maths? Hannah, Year 9 tells us more: https://t.co/0wQEXQTZlQ

31/07/17

It was Midsummer Madness in the build up to this year’s Equinox. Ashvini, Year 8, tells us more!… https://t.co/p6Fofk9NEM

29/07/17

Retweeted From Carol Chandler-Thomp

Girls due home first thing tomorrow after a wonderful experience in Tanzania Thanks fo… https://t.co/m1Ln5R6ARI

28/07/17

Get to know our teachers in our series of 60s interviews. First up, our Year 2 Teacher & Junior School Librarian:… https://t.co/XYnhMMEd70

27/07/17

A touching moment as our girls visiting Tanzania prepare to say goodbye by hanging words of wisdom & memories with… https://t.co/r3cmzvim6g

26/07/17

Retweeted From BlackheathHighDrama

How wonderful - she has inspired A level students of ours over the years with her amazing work - we look forward to… https://t.co/rt6uqNxDqC

26/07/17

Retweeted From Cheryl Giovannoni

. we are so proud of you all. Keep on making a difference for women in the world. https://t.co/fu8cszQdEj

25/07/17

Retweeted From Carol Chandler-Thomp

Latest pics from - star-gazing, stove building and birthday celebrations… https://t.co/FnKLwqEgq7

24/07/17

Retweeted From Blackheath High Sch

Music is never boring https://t.co/e0iHyWrbjo

24/07/17

Retweeted From Inspire Worldwide

Overseas Project-connect your girls with the of a lifetime!See more here:https://t.co/xxemQZ9hwE 🌍👭

24/07/17

Retweeted From Carol Chandler-Thomp

Safari day today for memories https://t.co/QUDQVvmrTO

24/07/17

Retweeted From Sarah Skevington

BBC Radio 4 - Bringing Up Britain, Series 10, How to Help Children to Feel Happy https://t.co/neupbOT3a5

23/07/17

Retweeted From Carol Chandler-Thomp

Great pics of our - brilliant project https://t.co/Ewa16P41nR

23/07/17

Retweeted From Carol Chandler-Thomp

Good work Maddie ! Stove building in Babati - but if a change from cupcakes https://t.co/psmLzMn5cf

21/07/17

Retweeted From Sarah Skevington

In the last few days of term raised £320 for Well done Mira and all who contributed

21/07/17

Retweeted From Carol Chandler-Thomp

Team Tanzania have been laying a concrete floor, making raised beds and sharing experiences today https://t.co/9wzJ0a63nt

18/07/17

Retweeted From UN Women

“Gender equity starts with education.” - https://t.co/cNc5H62Cd5

Mental wellbeing

Promoting good physical health should be straightforward; we know that we need to eat well, take exercise regularly and drink plenty of water. When it comes to mental health, however, we tend not to think about it until a problem develops. According to a recent article in The Guardian, this is a strategy that has been disastrous for an entire generation of British people (and in particular those under the age of 25).

A person’s mental health cannot be seen and there is still a significant stigma attached to discussing mental health problems; this is something that we are working hard to change in school.

Statistics tell us that one in four people in the UK will experience a mental illness each year. Yet we all have a brain and, therefore, a mental health. Surely, all of us should give consideration to how we might make lifestyle choices, and create an environment and society which is conducive to good mental health for everyone?

The mind: a school/home approach

We use PSHE in school to discuss a range of issues including body image, bullying, friendship - and a range of wellbeing issues that encourage our students to develop coping strategies that will stand them in good stead as they get older.

PSHE is only one part of the toolkit that we have to promote positive mental health. A really important approach that teachers and parents can take is to drop into casual conversations is that it is OK not to be OK. In Biology lessons, we can discuss mental health when we learn about how the brain functions, in English we can touch upon an author’s mental state, in PSHE we can discuss the treatment of people with mental illness within the legal system.

Over dinner with our children we can talk about how we are coping with life’s difficulties. By consistently and casually mentioning a topic, we take away some of the scariness and more importantly some of the stigma that stops students from asking for help when they are struggling.

The body: incorporate more physical activity

Young people need to move regularly in order to think clearly. They simply aren’t designed to be trapped in a small room with a smart phone for hours on end having information thrown at them all day. In addition, a sedentary lifestyle is terrible for our mental health, since the body and the brain work in tandem.

Encourage your daughter to get out at the weekend. Put the phone away for a couple of hours and go for a walk together. At school we encourage students to get involved with the co-curricular programme - from Netball to Spanish dancing there are lots of opportunities for the girls to throw themselves into physical activity.

The soul: encourage open communication

Technological advances mean there is the biggest gap in cultural understanding between adults (parents and teachers) and children since the 1960s. We must try to bridge the 'us and them' divide because communication is key to good mental health. For parents and teachers to have an open and honest dialogue with our children, we must understand their world and what is important to them.

Help young people find their passion and give them a healthy way to express themselves. Everyone needs a creative outlet, something which lets them release difficult feelings, perhaps through sport, art, music or drama. If we have this, we’re far less likely to express ourselves in more harmful ways.

We really try to encourage this at school through form time activities and through lessons. Blackheath High students are very socially aware and when they get involved with Community Projects and Charity Work they tend to be far less introspective – just look at the enthusiasm for collecting food for the local Salvation Army Food Bank recently.

A study by Professor Rachel Thompson in 2013 found young people see social media as more “real” than their three dimensional existences at home and at school. By immersing ourselves in their world, we give ourselves the tools to help them combat the worst aspects of the web and embrace the best. Most importantly, we can show them that not everything on the internet is real, and that there is a very real world at their fingertips.

The evidence shows that our daily habits have the most effect on our wellbeing; a little and often approach is what works best. Lots of conversations with the girls; allowing them to solve minor problems on their own gives them the strength to deal with big challenges as they get older; incorporating simple changes into the day, where we talk about mental health in the same way that we talk about physical health, not only impacts students, it can also have a profound positive impact on all of us – teachers and parents - too.

Useful Apps

Headspace


Headspace is a digital service that provides guided meditation sessions and mindfulness training. Its content can be accessed online, or via their mobile apps. In April 2016, Headspace claimed to have over 6 million people using the app.

BellyBio

Free app that teaches a deep breathing technique useful in fighting anxiety and stress. A simple interface uses biofeedback to monitor your breathing. Sounds cascade with the movements of your belly, in rhythms reminiscent of waves on a beach. Charts also let you know how you’re doing. A great tool when you need to slow down and breathe.

eCBT Calm

Provides a set of tools to help you evaluate personal stress and anxiety, challenge distorted thoughts, and learn relaxation skills that have been scientifically validated in research on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Lots of background and useful information along with step-by-step guides.

Optimism  

Track your moods, keep a journal, and chart your recovery progress with this comprehensive tool for anxiety. One of the most popular mood tracking apps available, with plenty of features.

iSleepEasy

A calm female voice helps you quell anxieties and take the time to relax and sleep, in an array of guided meditations. Separately controlled voice and music tracks, flexible lengths, and an alarm. Includes a special wee hours rescue track, and tips for falling asleep.

Magic Window

Living Pictures - Not technically a mental health app, it makes no miraculous claims about curbing anxiety. However, there is independent research indicating that taking breaks and getting exposure to nature, even in videos, can reduce stress. This app offers an assortment of peaceful, ambient nature scenes from beautiful spots around the world.

Relax Melodies

A popular free relaxation sound and music app. Mix and match nature sounds with new age music; it’s lovely to listen to birds in the rain while a piano softly plays.