Wellbeing: six words that help to understand what it means

Betty McLaughlin

Six indicators have been developed to make explicit what is important for students in their wellbeing and learning.

JCT wellbeing team leader, Betty McLaughlin, a former president of the Institute of Guidance Counsellors, says the indicators provide a common language, essential to providing a shared vision of wellbeing. She says it will make it easier for everyone to have conversations about it and to help identify where a student is in need of support.

Here, she offers a brief guide:

Resilience – realising life has ups and downs. Working through challenges and using what they have learnt to solve problems. Knowing when and where to go for help.

Respect – feeling listened to and valued; fostering positive relationships with peers and teachers ; receiving and showing care and respect for themselves and others.

Responsibility – learning to take action to protect and promote their wellbeing and that of others; making the right choices for their health and safety.

Active – understanding the importance of physical activity in their lives; minimum target of 30 minutes activity a day, which could be walking to school. For the first time, all junior cycle students, in all three years, will have weekly mandatory double PE class.

Aware – making sense of their thoughts, behaviours and feelings ; understanding what helps them to learn and how they can improve.

Connected – feeling connected and belonging to school , friends and the wider world; understadning the impact of their actions on themselves and others.a

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