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									    Families Matter session

    Parents and families working with
     schools to improve the wellbeing
                     of young people

    Role of parents/families

       Support and understanding from
        home is essential in the
        development of adolescents’
        confidence and self-esteem

    Why wellbeing in schools?

       “The experience that young people
        have at school is important not only for
        their education but also for their
                                        Fuller 2000 p 138

                                                        Linking MindMatters & Families Matter

                                                                                                                   in wellbeing promotion in school communities
                                                                                                                     Valuing and involving parents and families
                                                            Health promotion resource for secondary schools
                                                             Managed by Australian Principals Associations
                    (Department of Health and Ageing)
Australian Government

                                                                 National Parent Associations

                                                                     Families Matter session

                                                                   Continuing involvement of parents
                                                                              * Meeting together
                                                              * Further discussions and sessions about wellbeing
                                                                     * Partnership activities with schools

        Purpose of the session
        For parents and families to:

       Share our thinking about the health and
        wellbeing of our young people
       Think about our own wellbeing
       Hear what the school is doing
       Think about how we could work in partnership
       Raise questions, give our opinions
       Plan for any other discussion or meetings
       Meet other people

    Structure of the 2 hour session
       Welcome and introductions (5 minutes)
       Energiser (10 minutes)
       Information and discussion (50 minutes)
       What’s happening in the school (10 minutes)
       Working in partnership
        — small group discussion (30 minutes)
       Giving feedback (10 minutes)
       Closing comments (5 minutes)
    Getting to know each other
       Turn to the person next to you
           Introduce yourself
           Describe one thing about your child

    Getting to know each other
       In pairs

       Who are you, other than a parent
        or family member? What else do
        you do?
              e.g. sportsperson, gardener,
               cook, brother

    Getting to know each other
       Form a double circle
       Face a partner
       Talk about the following
                   I would rather be …
                   The best thing that has happened to me today …
                   One thing I remember from my schooling is …

       Change partners for each question
                   The presenter will let you know when

     Health and wellbeing
      ―Emotional and spiritual resilience which
      enables us to enjoy life and survive pain,
      disappointment and sadness. It is a
      positive sense of well-being and an
      underlying belief in our own and other’s
      dignity and worth.‖

                              Health Education Authority, 1998 England

     Why health and wellbeing
     promotion in secondary schools?

     1.   Problems surface in years 6–9

     2.   Schools are important settings

     3.   Prevention in schools often works

     Health Promoting Schools Framework

       Teaching promotes         School environment &
      wellbeing and values      organisation operate in a
       teachers, students,      welcoming way for staff,
         parents, families          students, parents
         and communities
                          MindMatters and families

                  Partnerships with parents,
                    families, communities
                         and services

     What’s in the MindMatters kit?
     Planning booklets          Classroom booklets
     •   SchoolMatters          •   Enhancing Resilience 1
     •   CommunityMatters       •   Enhancing Resilience 2
     •   Educating for Life     •   Dealing with Bullying
                                    and Harassment
     Other material             •   Understanding Mental
     •   Understanding Mental       Illness
         illness video          •   Loss and Grief
     •   pamphlets


     What stresses you?

        Brainstorm

     What stresses young people?
        Moving from primary to      Loss and change
         high school                 Family conflict
        Leaving school              Conflict with friends
        Racism                      Body image or
        Study                        changes
        Tests                       Same or opposite sex
        Juggling work, study,        relationships
         family and friends          The future
        Making friends              Unemployment
        Being accepted              Money

     What is resilience?

        Resilience is the ability to bounce
         back from, and successfully adapt
         to, adversity.

                                                       Bonnie Benard

     Mope, hope or cope activity
        Take a cope card
        Listen to the scenario
        Is your coping activity
            useful?
            not useful?
            possibly useful?

         Protective factors
        Having a supportive relationship with at least
         one adult
        Safe and positive routines and rules
        Being valued and encouraged
        Having realistic and positive goals
        Opportunity to be involved in family and
         school in a real way
        Being encouraged to be appropriately
        Able to communicate with others and solve
19       problems
     What young people need
      A sense of connectedness to
      families and school is the most
      significant protective factor for
      young people.

       Resnick, Harris & Blum 1993 The impact of caring and connectedness on adolescent health
                        and well being Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health 29 (Suppl. 1) S3–S9

     How to promote resilience

        Look at ways you can build up
         protective factors

        ―Nourish your own resilience and
                      Andrew Fuller 2000 Raising Real People

     Qualities of resilient families
        Communication                       Resilience
        Togetherness
        Sharing activities
        Affection
        Support
        Acceptance
        Commitment
                         The Family Action Centre, University of Newcastle
     Help seeking

        Asking for help
               is not a sign of weakness

        Referring friends or family
               is not a breach of loyalty

     Who can you turn to?
        Who could you talk to if you were worried
         about your own health and wellbeing?
            Family at home
            Other family
            Friends
            Local doctor
            Religious leader
            Phone help lines

     Barriers to help seeking
        Fear
        Privacy
        Timing
        Shame, guilt
        Embarrassment
        Lack of trust in others
        “I should be able to cope on my own”
        Not knowing what support is available
            Or how to get to it
        Not part of our culture
     Form a group
        Find other people with the same
         card as you
            Elect a recorder
                 someone to write down the group’s ideas
            Elect a reporter
                 someone to share a few of the group’s
                  ideas with the whole meeting

     Student qualities
     •   What are the qualities
         we wish to see in our

     •   How can schools help?
     •   How can parents and
         families help?

     Our school
     What things are happening for students?

          Whole group brainstorm

          Brief report from the school
                  By school-based person for 5–10 mins

          How can we support all this?
                  Small group discussion

     Working in partnership

        How can we strengthen what is
         already happening in the school?

     What will be our first 3 steps?

                              • What could happen
      • How could we work
          with teachers          in the school
        in the classroom?          generally?

                 • What could happen
                        in the

     Feedback from individuals

        Please take a feedback sheet
        Fill in your opinions
        Hand sheet to …

     Feedback from groups
        Form a group of 3–6 people
        Ask someone in the group to be
         recorder (do the writing)
        Talk about each question
        Record any answers
        Hand in sheet

     Post-it note feedback

        Each question is on one of the posters
         around the room
        Write your feedback on a post-it note
         and add to the sheet
               Individually
               In small groups

     Aussie families …
        A Flinders University survey of 750
         Australian families looked at the
         relationships between adolescents and their
         parents. These results were compared with
         those from other countries. Australian
         teenagers were found to be among the
         happiest. The majority of young people
         reported that conflict with parents was not
         common and their parents agreed.
                                                     Headroom website
     Personal action
        In the community?
        At work or home?
        With your family?
        With individual children?
        For yourself?

     Taking care of ourselves
        If parents want to raise their
         children to have healthy lives …
         they are going to have to have a
         good time and live healthy lives
                              Based on Fuller 1998 p 63


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