Term 3 newsletter themes

Looking for content to share with your school community about student mental health and wellbeing? Here you will find information to use in your regular newsletters including direct links to ReachOut.com.

This will help you to:

  • Design newsletters with fresh and engaging articles
  • Inform your school community about the importance of young people's mental health 
Woman talking to boy with iPad

1. Failing & mindsets

Learning from failure is fundamental to student achievement and motivation at school. Failure is a part of life that everybody experiences. It is how you deal with failure that determines how much you grow and learn through your experiences. In a school setting it is common for students to feel like they are competing against each other. This can make failure very hard for some students at they may compare themselves to a friend or another student who has done better than them and feel as though they will never be able to succeed at the same level. It is therefore important that teachers and parents promote failure as a positive and necessary step to improving. When a students does not achieve a result they were hoping for, let them know that it’s not because they can’t do it, it’s just that they can’t do it yet. This will encourage them to adopt a growth mindset and see failure as an opportunity to do better next time and not a final determination of how good/bad they are at something. 

ReachOut.com Fact Sheets

What is a mindset?

Everyone makes mistakes

Failing a course or subject

 

2. Mental fitness

One in four young Australians live with a mental health difficulty and 75% of people with mental health difficulties will experience it’s onset by the age of 24. It is therefore very important that we practise preventative measures in the school environment to provide young people with knowledge and support around mental fitness and wellbeing. There are a number of ways parents and teachers can support student’s wellbeing and mental fitness within the school community.

  • Encourage students to seek help if they feel they are not coping. This can be online help (e.g. ReachOut.com) or face to face help (e.g. speaking to the school counselor).
  • Set aside time to do short activities that promote mindfulness.
  • Focus on student’s strengths.
  • Talk about mental health and wellbeing with students. Talking about mental health and wellbeing reduces the stigma around mental health difficulties and gives students permission to talk about their state of mental health without the fear of being judged.

By incorporating some of these actions into everyday school life teachers and parents can help encourage mental fitness in students and prevent serious mental health difficulties.

ReachOut.com fact sheets

 What is mindfulness

Self talk and self awareness

Relaxation training

Where to get help

What is mental health?


3. Staying fit and healthy

High School can be a stressful time for some students. Some factors contributing to this stress include relationships, friendship groups, school work, puberty, family life and peer pressure. With all these factors (and more) to navigate, it can be hard to prioritise staying fit and healthy. It's therefore important that teachers and parents encourage students to form healthy lifestyle habits and support them in having a healthy body and mind. Within the school community teachers and parents should promote healthy eating, sleeping and physical activity habits through

  • Talking about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle
  • Setting a good example
  • Providing students with knowledge on how to create healthy habits
  • Encouraging and supporting students to break bad habits

ReachOut.com fact sheets

What is healthy eating?

Benefits of healthy eating

All about getting active

Creating your own exercise routine 

Health at every size

How to get a good night’s sleep

Having trouble sleeping


4. Body Image

Nobody is perfect, however because of the photo shopped images of people that we are shown every day through media you would be forging for thinking otherwise. High School is a time when many young people develop their sense of self and their body image has a big part to play in this. Students who are comfortable in their bodies are more likely to have high self-esteem and stronger mental fitness. It is important that teachers and parents promote a positive body image mentality in the school community to counteract the photo shopped models young people see every day in the media. Having conversations about photo shopped images and talking about the beauty in diverse bodies is important (how boring would it be if we all looked the same!). It is important as well that teachers and parents encourage students to talk to someone if they suspect they are struggling with their body image.

ReachOut.com fact sheets

 What is body image

Guys and body image

Causes of negative body image

What is body dysmorphic disorder

Health at every size


5. Depression

Depression is a serious mental disorder. The word depression often gets used to describe moments or periods of time when people were felling down. However the official use of the word depression, which is often diagnosed as 'major depressive disorder', is used if feelings of sadness persist for longer than two weeks and start to get in the way of everyday life. Depression can also only be diagnosed by a health professional. It is common for young people to go through periods of ups and downs. It is important that teachers and parents know the signs and symptoms of depression so they can be aware if a student may be at risk of depression. Some sign and symptoms of depression are

  • a lower than average mood level for more than two weeks
  • loss of interest in activities that used to bring pleasure
  • inability to concentrate
  • low energy levels
  • feelings of guilt
  • thoughts of self harm or suicide
  • feelings of hopelessness
  • trouble with memory

Teaching students that depression is more than feeling sad can encourage them to look out for one another and seek help if they are worried for themselves or a friend. Depression can be managed and overcome. The sooner help is received, the faster symptoms of depression will go away. 

Reachout.com fact sheets

Depression

Helping a friend with depression

Treatments for depression

Key services for help with depression

Self-help strategies for depression

Myths about depression


6. Life Choices for students in year 12

At the end of Term Three year 12 students will be finishing high school. When students reach the end of their final year of school they are facing making some big choices and career decisions. This can be very overwhelming, but with the support of parents and teachers these choices can be made easier. It is not uncommon for students to feel that the choice they make at the end of year 12 will determine their entire life. This idea can cause anxiety and stress and make students feel they are under a large amount of pressure to make the right choice. It is important that parents and teachers provide support and understanding to students through this time. Put time aside to listen to students and what they want and assure them that if what they choose to do after High Schoolch doesn't work out there will be another pathway to success.

ReachOut.com fact sheets

Graduating from high school

Finished with school

Taking a gap year

Moving away to study

Managing study and work


Next steps


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