Wellness Week is something I have wanted to put together for many years, but as a full time teacher, time was very limited! I am passionate about offering an alternate/ additional curriculum to that offered at school. It is my belief that as they learn academic subjects, more emphasis should be placed on learning to be healthy and happy- what could be more important?
2016 took place between July 11th and 15th in Son Caliu. It was based around the key components of happiness identified by my research. These are: Exercise, relaxation and stillness, relationships, self esteem and positivity, time in nature, contribution/ community and leisure time. My aim was to introduce children to the importance of good self esteem, positive thinking, resilience and emotional intelligence.
12 children attended between the ages of 4 and 14. Here is a snapshot of what we got up to.
On day 1 we made a friendship circle to get to know each other, and the children were encouraged to look for nice things to say about each other at the end of the day.
Once the ice had been broken, it was time to stretch and awaken with a little yoga followed by a soothing and centering guided meditation.
Sufficiently ‘chilled’ by this point, it was time to think about the things that make us happy. Each of us (including me) came up with a bucket list which we decorated beautifully to display at home and tick off the activities as we achieved them (at the time of writing I have completed 5 of my 15 of my summer goals and have had great fun doing them!)
After a healthy lunch together we talked about the importance of positive thinking and the children were introduced to the idea of positive affirmations and how to use them. They went home with lots of personalised positive statements to put around their rooms, in their note books etc to repeat as often as possible.
What a great first day!
On day 2 we had a special visit from mindfulness teacher, Jess Lambert. She took the children on a ‘mindful walk’ and did lots of fun activities to help them to learn to live in the moment.
After break we looked at the meditative process of creating mandalas and created our own beautiful examples to take home.
The afternoon was all about happiness and how being kind to others can help us achieve it. What a great afternoon! We took to the streets giving out paper flowers and free hugs. It was great to see the children that were shy at first being keen to collect the most free hugs once they saw the positive public reaction!
Following the morning routine of yoga and guided meditation, we thought about all of the wonderful things that we wanted to manifest in our lives. The concept of vision boards was introduced and how they should be used, after which we set about creating our own.
The afternoon brought a surprise of the four legged variety! The subject was how animals can make us happy. We learnt about the healing powers of a cat’s purr, helping animals, animals working with autistic children and then 8 month old Fenway was introduced to the delight of participants!
In the morning we were joined by Nia teacher, Erika. Nia is an especially freeing type of dance. We crawled on the floor like snakes, threw some martial arts moves and drew what we envisioned in the music. The children loved it!
Project pamper me was next which saw girls and boys getting hand massages, trying face masks and generally looking, smelling and feeling beautiful!
In the afternoon participants make their own documentary on the subject of happiness and what they had learned over the week.
All good things must come to an end, so they say and Friday brought the last day of wellness week for this year.
After yoga and meditation, we discussed the week and the impression in had left on us, reviewed what we had learnt and how we could use it in our daily lives.
Later it was time to plan a party! The children chose the theme, music, games and food.
Before ending we gave every member of the group our individual thanks for their personal contribution to the week and celebrated new friends made, ready for a wonderful summer!
Thank you to all who took part for making this such a wonderful week. I will be planning similar events in future so please inquire if you are interested. More photos and videos can be seen on our facebook page:
See you next time! x