Pupils at a leading Warwickshire independent school are being urged to ‘switch off’ while learning remotely as part of Children’s Mental Health Week.
Arnold Lodge School, a co-educational independent school in Leamington Spa, has introduced an initiative to encourage Junior School children to spend time away from their screens and learn through hands-on tasks in a bid to promote mental wellbeing.
More pertinent than ever as pupils up and down the country continue with remote learning as part of the national Covid-19 lockdown, the idea is to encourage Arnold Lodge pupils to spend less time at the screens.
All Junior School pupils will be switching off their devices for the week and remote learning will continue without screens, with the children completing their lessons each day alongside a series of mindfulness activities to do at home.
Each year group has received a wellbeing pack including the book they are studying, supplies for art projects and seeds to plant, nurture and watch grow.
Pupils will also be encouraged to try bird watching in the garden, create a stress ball from a balloon, try learning sign language to say their name, send a secret message to their friends in Morse code, and create their own art projects with recycled items.
Matt James, Head of Junior School at ALS, said: “To help promote Children’s Mental Health Week, we wanted to encourage our pupils to spend some time away from their screens and focus more on their own mental health and wellbeing.
“All the children have adapted really well to learning remotely through their devices but we wanted to encourage them to spend more time exploring and learning away from their screens and to try some new activities at home.
“I’m sure some time away from the screen will also give parents some inspiration for fun activities to try with their children whilst schools continue with online teaching.
“Each child will receive a pack with a copy of the book they are studying, the equipment they need for the arts and craft tasks and some postcards with lots of activities that don’t involve a device, and instead encourages them to be creative and learn.”
As well as creating shadow puppets, playlists of their favourite songs and a nap den, pupils will receive books including The King who banned the Dark, Fox and The Wild Robot to study for the week.
He added: “There’s also a lot of fun activities they can do with the things they can find at home, like art projects using egg cartons from the recycling, dressing up challenges and exploring the wildlife in their own back gardens.
“We are so excited to see how the children get on with these activities and for the ALS Community to take some time away from their screens, and focus more on their mental wellbeing during these difficult times.”
For more information on Arnold Lodge School, visit www.arnoldlodge.com or search for Arnold Lodge School on social media.