Module 3

Mental Health for Students and Teachers

Welcome to Module 3:

How do I earn my digital badge?
(make this a button with a pop up window on each module - with instructions - post on every interactive board, read articles at end (min) prior to seminar engage in discussion etc.)

Mental Health for Students and Teachers

​     EDIT THIS....The goal of this module is to examine and understand how we can determine what our diverse students need to feel safe and represented in the material. Research tells us that creating and maintaining a positive learning environment; building a learning community; giving consistent feedback in a timely manner; and using the right technology to deliver the right content (Nafukho & Chakraborty, 2014) are key factors in strengthening student engagement in online courses. This module will provide you with the information and opportunities to develop your personalized pedagogical approach towards building healthy, safe, and inclusive Physical Education communities via distance learning.

The Big Ideas

 

Starting the Conversation about Mental Health in PHE

Edit this.....Teaching has rapidly evolved and the pace of technological change means our pedagogy will always include a digital component.  Whether it's using google classroom, sharing and editing each other's work online, or working through an online activity, students need to become good digital citizens to communicate now and in the future.

 

Physical Educators are in a unique position to coach and teach digital skills for the 21C - skills such as teamwork, creativity, problem-solving, negotiation and more are all included in the World Economic Forum list of skills needed to thrive in the 4th Industrial Revolution. As educators, it is our role to set the foundation of building blocks to help students become smart, conscientious, and innovative beings both behind the screen and in person.

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Who experiences Mental Health?  And what is it?

     Mental Health affect each and everyone one of us, we take care of our physical health so why not take care of our mental health.  This module aims to shed light on several key topics that are arising in our schools now and provide you with resources, lesson ideas and professional discussions about these topics.  Although we would like to speak in depth about how to help each and every student we simply can’t explore everything within this single module.  Please make use of the links provided for more specific information

Students living with eating disorders

Students suffering from self harm behaviours

Student's Living with ....

Student's Living with ....

As physical and health educators, we can loose touch with with our co-workers because of all the demands put on us (i.e. running intramural at lunch).  The pandemic didn't help matters, from the constant changing of class locations, virtual to in-person and some PHE teachers loosing their gymnasiums entirely so that math and english classes could all be taught at once while social distancing. PHE teachers were left with questions about how can they authentically assess their students or teach them physical literacy over a camera!

 

There is an overwhelming feeling among PHE teachers of feeling marginalized and there is research to show this.  PHE teachers suffer from burnout earlier in their careers, compared to teachers from other subjects which isn't surprising considering the lack of support for our efforts of organizing team trips and running tournaments.  Every teacher works hard and organizes special events for their students, however other subjects are often deemed as important so they get the recognition and support they need, but research shows that physical health and education programs are lacking in this area, creating the divide and sence of marginalization of physical health and education teachers.

Activity: Teachers Prioritize Yourself

effects of marginalization on school PE programs.png

When you read this article consider your perspective and consider:

  1. Have you felt marginalized in your current position?  And did the article reveal ANY SOLUTIONS FOR YOU"?  EDIT

  2. How often have you advocated for PHE and physical literacy with parents who don't view it as necessary?

  3. Do you suffer from teachers burnout - or have a colleuge that does?  what are some ways you can get or give support?

  4. Do you agree that a PHE department website would be useful in educating parents and showcasing what PHE has to offer?

"T

     hrough the research, it also became apparent that PE programs are suffering extreme marginalization compared to other subjects and that PE teachers are feeling a large sense of ―burnout early in their careers

                                                                                                 Laureano, J. et al. (2014)

Checking in with our Community

This module wouldn't serve it's purpose if we didn't take care of our community and check-in with everyone enrolled with PHEWISE's microcredentials.  Checking in may seem such a small gesture but it can have a huge impact on the mood, mental health and overall disposition of you, your students, co-worker, family or friend you are checking in with. 

group work (11).jpg

Please take a few moments complete this survey, as a participant, for our research purposes

Activity - Identify my risk factors/create your own self check

In answering the questions above, did you find some resonated more with you?  Fit your lifestyle more than others?  We often know what our triggers are, or things we need to make sure we are doing them to stay our healthiest physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.  Which is why having students create their own list of check ins could be an eye opening experience.  They may think they are doing great, eating good food all the time, moderating their social media and computer game usage but in reality it isn't until we take a step back, do we really see the big picture.

Teachers, we ask that you create your own check in list and use it for a week, a month or a few days.  It will show you the benefit and perhaps shed some light on which one of your students it could help.  Use google forms, excel, a word doc, notes app on your phone to create your list to review each day and share a picture on this wakelet.

Wakelet

We don't need to tell you that every student is different, which is why having them develop their own questions could reflect specific things they need to keep track of, for example:

 

1) What was your sleep quality?

2) Have you taken tech breaks lately? (no tech before bed, or not using a certain app)

3) Have you scheduled your time appropriately by giving yourself breaks?

4) What are your emotional and physical pain scores today?

5) Are you staying hydrated?

6) Nature, pets , spiritual beliefs, etc.

 

These questions may seem simple, but to someone having a difficult day, week or even a difficult year, the simple act of checking in could go a long way. 

The website idontmind.com has created a 10 question check in (shown below) that you can use as starting point for your students. 

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Questions

1. How are you feeling today, really? Physically and mentally.

2. What’s taking up most of your headspace right now?

3. What was your last full meal, and have you been drinking enough water?

4. How have you been sleeping?

5. What have you been doing for exercise?

6. What did you do today that made you feel good?

7. What’s something you can do today that would be good for you?

8. What’s something you’re looking forward to in the next few days?

9. What’s something we can do together this week, even if we’re apart?

10. What are you grateful for right now?

The purpose of this activity is to self identify what your risk factors and protective factors are and to monitor them in order to help keep you on track.  Some people may do this mentally and self reflect by thinking; "I haven't been sleeping well, that's probably why my mood is off"  or  "the construction is making my commute to school even longer, I wonder if that's why I'm more irritable?'".  It's more likely that adults self-reflect on our behaviour than our students do, which is why this could be a great activity for them to monitor their mood.

There are several ways of doing this, from a simple paper and pencil check list, to a creative dot journal entry (see picture above, bottom left).  Students can even create a google form or a simple phone application that promps them with questions and tracks their answers.  Having diversity in the delivery of this self check will give student autonomy over which method resonates with them and increases their likelihood of using this as a self tracker or daily mood tracker.

Activity #2 - Student's Check in Buddy

The above activity was to teach student to monitor their own mental health and promote autonomy.  This activity will show students that it's just an important to support and help others, when help is needed. Even if someone doesn't personally have battles with their mental health, that doesn't mean they can't be involved in helping others heal and strengthen their mental health.  This video shows interviews of teenagers about their mental health, and that of their friends during the COVID pandemic and school lock downs. It's very relatable and can be used in conjunction with this activity or another one you have in your teaching arsenal.

Students will choose a SECRET check in buddy.  Your students will then create a digital journal and document when and how they helped their secret buddy. By secret, we mean that the buddy can't know they are writting a journal about how the student is helping them, or how the student is trying different strategies with this buddy. 

 

You may add a self-reflection to this assignment, because building empathy in students to open up and start the conversation about mental health and teach them how to have real conversations and build trusting relationships is very important

who

Students could pick anyone who they see on a regular basis (weekly)

what

Students will document how they have tried to help their secret buddy, what strategies did they used? and how it made them feel or their buddy feel.  Try to have students stay away from names, or specific stories about what their buddy is going through etc. as this is not the point of the exercise.

when

You decide, however, as this is a mental health issue and we can't predict them.  So we recommend having the student complete 4-6 journal entries over the course of the semester or term.

why

This journal will allow your students to keep track of how they helped their buddy, what worked etc. 

Digital Journal Templates

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MH Buddy Journal.png

Consolidation, depending on the grades you are teaching, could be anywhere between building relationships with friends to demonstrating how discussing mental health and physical health could benefit everyone.

The more we include mental health discussions into everyday conversations, the more we can educate people and break the stigma around mental health.

​​​​​

De-stigmatizing mental health in our classrooms is so important and it doesn't mean we have to talk about it all the time or turn the conversation to talking about a mental health disorder a child is suffering from.  It merely means allowing our students to be free to talk about their mental health without judgment from peers, teachers, family or friends.  As teachers we have a duty to help our students understand that being healthy includes everything, physical health, mental health, emotional health and sexual health.

Talking about Stigma

        he main reasons for (not) seeking and accessing professional help given by young people are those related to mental health stigma and embarrassment, a lack of mental healthknowledge and negative perceptions of help-seeking."

 

                                                                                                           Radez, J. et al. (2021)

"T

Activity - Article & Jamboard

A School-Based Intervention for Mental Illness Stigma: A Cluster Randomized Trial

ABSTRACT

Curriculum Intervention about Stigma

Exposure/Expert panel of youth living with mental health issues

Provided with printed material/achor charts about mental health

Jamboard- of course, every class is different and the classroom culture changes year to year, but your teaching and instructional design of your lessons remain.  Using these post - it notes, move them around to identity which event you would do first with your students, and create almost like a flow chart of how your would teach how to reduce stigma in yoru classroom.

 

There are no wrong answers, only collaborations!  As teachers we sometimes try things and fail, so it’s nice to share and see how others have succeeded and why so that we may adapt similar strategies. 

- pedagogy strategies, other things, smaller activities they would add etc.

NEED MORE HERE - ANOTHER ACTIVITY OR SOMETHING RELATED TO THIS ARTICLE

Activity - Video .....

    As we dive deep into mental health, student's emotions may be raised which gives us the perfect opportunity to speak and share about our stories and struggles.  Reminding students that there is a big difference between empathy and sympathy and as stories are shared we need to be open to listening and be empathetic to what each of us have gone through.  Everyone’s live journey is different but most of us have experienced similar emotions, which may be on different levels but you can be empathetic to each other by connecting through those shared experiences.

    Talking about mental health, the emotional side of things, the chemistry in your brains and the attitudes towards is could help a lot of people, students, co-workers etc. Students are already going through so many physical, physcological and emotional changes as they grow up and can often feel overwhelmed but don't udnerstand what those feelings are.  Educating ourselves and arming your students, so that if and when you or someone we care about is feel this way, you know and understand what’s really going.  Those feelings/thoughts could be taken care of by either talking to a friend, a therapist, or by engaging in activities that could be identified as one of your protective factors (which we will discuss in the next section).

Since every class is unique, this activity is meant to open up the conversation about menatl health, and although the work sheet, provided below, is directly related to Kristen Bell's video, it could be adapted towards any of the following videos. 

Activity - Celeb Videos with Worksheet

    There are so many public figures such as; Selena Gomez, Tom Holland, Kevin Love, Clara Hughes, Demar Derozon, Naomi Osaka, Carey Price, Simone Biles.  They have come forward to speak about their mental health struggles, how they got through it and how they continue to carry on and manage their mental health without it derailing their goals in life.  It's so important that students understand that just because we discuss it now, doesn't mean you have to be vulnerable and discuss it every day.  But they should know that if and/or when negative feeling arise, the sooner they deal with it, the sooner they can carry on!

Worksheet Q & A
Download

    In consolidation, you may want to look at several mental health campaigns that have arise over the years such as Bell Let's Talk day and the CAMH Mental Health Week.  Encourage your students to see the Pro's and Con's to such campaigns.  Should we only talk about mental health for only 1 day or 1 week a year?  How would they change the campaign? Are there better ones out there that should be more mainstream so that students their age could resonate and seek help if they need it? Having them go through these exercises will help reduce the stigma, but it will also help them become advocates, open listeners and shoulders for people in their lives that may need them.  Just because we may not suffer from these issues ourselves, doesn't mean that one day we may not need to help someone we care about get through a difficult time.

 

Building Protective Factors

    Developing protective factors in our lives is one of the best ways to stay healthy physically and mentally.  Being involved in hobbies, social engagements and having a support systems of family and friends is not only good for our students by good for us.  As teachers we could have a difficult time keep a balanced lifestyle which is why managing our stress and identifying our own protective factors are equally important.

Risk Factors and why Protective factors are important - Pre and Post COVID

The relationship between protective factors and your mental health cannot be ignored as they have a direct relationship to one another.  As physical & health education teachers we already know the importance of this topic for our students and you probably already have activities that you use with your students to help them identify their protective factors.  THERE WILL BE A SECTION BELOW TO SHARE THESE ACTIVIES WITH ONEANOTHER....  EDIT THIS

Over the last few years, with the shut down of schools and sudden change in lifestyles because of the pandemic, several risk factors for students became more prominent such as peer victimization, isolation, cyber bullying and lack of peer socialization.  Alternately, protective factors such as building relationships with your students and helping them develop their personal resilience can go a long way for some students that are prone to living with poor mental health.  The images below discusses a few of these topics.

 

pexels-keira-burton-6147121.jpg

peer victimization

Increased with virtual school and higher technology usage when student exchanges aren't monitored or reported
siblings (6)_edited_edited.png

Overwhelming
Responsibilities

youth or siblings acting in place of a parent can increase stress and anxiety and take away childhoods
pexels-pavel-danilyuk-8423077.jpg

Student-Teacher
Relationships

strong relationships decreased peer victimization in elementary schools and you can act as a positive support in a students life
pexels-tobit-nazar-nieto-hernandez-3087286.jpg

Personal
Resilience

identifying personal strengths, coping mechanisms and good social supports can build resilience and confidence in students
pexels-alena-darmel-7710205.jpg

Peer
Socialization

social emotional learning strategies, team building, group resolution and having students solve problems on their own will build these skills

thinklink, explain everything, canva, mural, prezi, coggle, mind node, lucid chart

- Read this article and create a mind map of how things connect (from the article and from your experience)  you can use these suggested categories or create some of your own...  1) Risk - peer victimization, home stress, responsibility burdens, family pressures / 2) Protective - social support, coping strategies, exercise

- could look at all things that contribute to poor mental health, substance abuse, eating disorders, violent behaviour, delienquency, gangs, drugs, crime

Roles of Resilience, Peer Relatioships on Mental Health.png

Article and Mind Map Activity

Risk Factors and why Protective factors are important - Pre and Post COVID

    The relationship between protective factors and your mental health cannot be ignored as they have a direct relationship to one another.  As physical & health education teachers we already know the importance of this topic for our students and you probably already have activities that you use with your students to help them identify their protective factors.  THERE WILL BE A SECTION BELOW TO SHARE THESE ACTIVITIES WITH ONEANOTHER....  EDIT THIS

    Over the last few years, with the shut down of schools and sudden change in lifestyles because of the pandemic, several risk factors for students became more prominent such as peer victimization, isolation, cyber bullying and lack of peer socialization.  Alternately, protective factors such as building relationships with your students and helping them develop their personal resilience can go a long way for some students that are prone to living with poor mental health.  The images below discusses a few of these topics.

 

pexels-keira-burton-6147121.jpg

peer victimization

Increased with virtual school and higher technology usage when student exchanges aren't monitored or reported
siblings (6)_edited_edited.png

Overwhelming
Responsibilities

youth or siblings acting in place of a parent can increase stress and anxiety and take away childhoods
pexels-pavel-danilyuk-8423077.jpg

Student-Teacher
Relationships

strong relationships decreased peer victimization in elementary schools and you can act as a positive support in a students life
pexels-tobit-nazar-nieto-hernandez-3087286.jpg

Personal
Resilience

identifying personal strengths, coping mechanisms and good social supports can build resilience and confidence in students
pexels-alena-darmel-7710205.jpg

Peer
Socialization

social emotional learning strategies, team building, group resolution and having students solve problems on their own will build these skills

Article and Mind Map Activity

Roles of Resilience, Peer Relatioships on Mental Health.png

As you have probably experienced, protective factors can vary drastically from one person to another and what one person prefers isn't what is is going to help the next, in a sense, they are not a one-size-fits-all.  However, there are certain categories that many of them can be organized into such as; relationships, social/communication, hobbies, activities/physical movement, preventative behaviours and location or spacial environment to name a few.

This article examines the relationship between certain risk and protective factors (personal resilience, peer socialization and student-teacher relationships etc.) and the role they play in students building resilience.

ASK Them to think about questions

- how do the factors connect?

- are they influenced by the same things?

- can you categorize them?

- Read this article and create a mind map of how things connect (from the article and from your experience)  you can use these suggested categories or create some of your own...  1) Risk - peer victimization, home stress, responsibility burdens, family pressures / 2) Protective - social support, coping strategies, exercise

- could look at all things that contribute to poor mental health, substance abuse, eating disorders, violent behaviour, delienquency, gangs, drugs, crime

Read the article and make connections between risk factors and protective factors gathered from your personal experience, from the article or one you suggest to your students.  Categorize the factors and create a mind map to show the connections between them, which ones can be considered risk and protective factors and how they are related.  This can be a personal mind map to be used a a self exploration exercise to tie together all your protective and risk factors or create one to use as a demonstration for your class.  There are many mind-mapping software available for free and below is a curated list of our favourites, feel free to try a new one or use one that you are comfortable with.

 

POST MIND MAP SOMEWHERE?????  to prove they have finished it??  GIVE SAMPLE??

mural-logo.png
thinglink logo.jpeg
mindnode logo 2.png
explain everything logo.png
mind-meister-logo.png
coggle logo.png
Canva-New-Logo.png
lucid chart logo.png

Additional Resources

In addition to the above mind map activity for students, showing this video (for elementary audiences) could help teaching students about how to be resilient and manage their emotions.  As well as help them identify what protective factors they have in their lives and when to use them.  The video talks about finding healthy ways to deal with stressful situations and gives the example of petting your pet and talking to someone.  This is a great video on it's own or coupled with the above activity.

Article: Self-Image as Risk factor

       elf-image plays an important role in every stage of development and is particularly important during adolescence, a time when individuals extensively reorganize their self and relationships."

 

                                                                                                   Di Blasi, M., et al. (2015)

"S