R is for Resilience

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How would you define resilience?

This is the question that we get the students thinking about when we deliever our year 7 and year 8 resilience workshops. As part of the work of Phase, we deliver workshops to students in year 7 and year 8 looking at the topic of resilience, something that we are passionate about here at Phase!! A large number of the year 7 students that we work with know Phase from the year 6 workshops, this is such a great foundation for us to build upon and enables us to be that face of continuity from primary school to secondary school.

Resilience is foundational to good wellbeing and if we are able to help these students think about what resilience is, how they can continue to build it, then hopefully they will be a little bit more equipped when the storms of life come their way. We get the students looking at when they might need to show resilience, what are helpful and unhelpful behaviours for resilience. In Year 8 we build upon this and get them to apply their understanding of resilience to different scenarios that they might face.

Emily and I have just had the opportunity to join Hitchin Girls School (HGS) on their year 8 school trip. This involved lots of outdoor activities, including raft building, abseiling, the trapeze and archery. A number of these activities involve the students and us to step out of our comfort zone! It is when we step out of comfort zone that we learn resilience. During the year 8 workshop we are able to draw upon the experiences had on the trip and get them to reflect on times when they demonstrated resilience and what helped them be resilient. A key factor is support. In order for us to be resilient, we need often need the support of others, that encouragement, cheer of support to keep going, to give things a try when the easy option might be to stop.

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Last half term we had an exciting new opportunity with Hitchin Boys School (HBS) to develop and deliver 5 assemblies on resilience to around 240 year 7 boys. During this time, we were able to unpack with them what resilience is and the different types of resilience (Physical, Social, Emotional and Mental). We set them challenges each which they engaged really well with. One of the challenges was to design a poster on Resilience – the winning poster is shown below!

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Within the secondary school’s work that we do there is so much variety from teaching on resilience, mentoring, school trips, alpha there is so much opportunity and it is a privilege to be able to play a part in helping the young people develop good wellbeing and resilience.

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