Advice on preserving children’s wellbeing is the focus of the latest leaflet to come from the partnership between school leaders’ union NAHT and the charity Family Action.
The latest in the series of leaflets aimed at offering simple suggestions for parents on keeping children healthy, happy and ready to learn at school each day, focuses on easy ways to boost self-esteem and promote physical wellbeing.
Research from several sources including the organisations Public Health England, The Children’s Society and Young Minds, shows that a child’s wellbeing is directly linked to their ability to learn.
The new leaflet encourages parents to remember the importance of simple things such as telling their child that they love them every day and provides tips on positive behaviour.
The leaflet also offers pointers for encouraging healthy eating and fitness by letting children help prepare family meals and supporting children to take 30 minutes of vigorous exercise each day.
Bernadette Hunter, NAHT president 2013-14 said: “Modern life is so highly pressured for parents that it can be easy to forget to do the little things that can make a real difference to a child’s self-esteem. For instance, sometimes we assume our children know that we love them but children need to hear the words.
“If children feel happy and healthy at home then they come into the classroom free from worries and ready to learn. I believe parents are the best partners schools can have in helping pupils make the most of their education.”
Ms Hunter added: “The leaflet talks about the importance of helping a child to persevere with tasks and reassuring them that it is ok to make mistakes. Trying out some of the suggestions can go a long way to giving children a sense of wellbeing which will give them a good starting point for school life.“
The campaign recognises that most parents automatically link wellbeing at home with school learning. However, Family Action and NAHT hope the leaflet will give all parents a gentle reminder to discuss emotions and self-esteem with their children.
The new leaflet is being distributed to NAHT’s 28,500 members who will in turn be encouraged to share it with parents. It is the fifth in a series produced by Family Action and NAHT. Previous leaflets provided tips on getting children ready to learn, on speaking and listening and relating literacy and numeracy learnt in the classroom to simple tasks at home.
The Ready to Learn Every Day campaign is aimed at promoting the vital role of parents in their children’s learning, as well as supporting teachers in their relationships with pupils and their families. Parental engagement is especially important for children from disadvantaged families, who include those supported by many of Family Action’s services.
David Holmes, chief executive of Family Action, said: “We are delighted and hugely honoured that NAHT has chosen Family Action as its charity of the year for the second year running. Over the last year the partnership has enabled us to highlight some important messages to parents on how they can support their children to get the most out of school. We deliver services to lots of different families across the country and while these messages are basic there is substance to them too.
The emotional wellbeing of children really matters. We all want to see children that are healthy, both emotionally and physically, and ready to learn. If the practical advice in this simple leaflet makes a parent pause just for a second and reflect on the wellbeing of their child then it will have done a good job."
This year’s incoming NAHT president, Gail Larkin, will take up her post at the union’s annual conference from 02 May to 04 May 2014.
Notes to Editors
- Family Action has been chosen as NAHT Charity of Choice for a second year.
- The two organisations are planning a range of awareness and fundraising activities over the year and a series of five assembly plans has been created to support the Ready to Learn Every Day campaign. For more information visit www.family-action.org.uk/naht.
Family Action transforms lives by providing practical, emotional and financial support to those who are experiencing poverty, disadvantage and social isolation across England. The charity has been building stronger families since 1869, and today works with over 45,000 families and children through 120 community-based services. Thousands more are supported with financial assistance through education and welfare grants programmes. Family Action’s innovative services include early years care, help for children and families and adult mental health support. Reaching out to those in need, we strengthen families and communities, build skills and resilience and improve the life chances of children and adults. www.family-action.org.uk
Page Published: 30/04/2014