“The aim is to make pupils feel that they are ‘recognised and have a voice’. “ – Good Schools Guide Review
Our Wellbeing Programme is integrated into student life at Halcyon. Our students thrive, academically and socially, in a learning environment that values, uplifts and nurtures every voice.
At Halcyon, the different aspects of Student life – our Student Council, leadership-oriented Extra-Curricular Activities, digital citizenship, safeguarding and personal learning – all combine to nurture the foundation for wellbeing. Our Wellbeing Team leads a dedicated programme of social and emotional learning to reinforce this positive approach to life and learning.
Wellbeing at Halcyon is more than a pastoral care programme. Our Student Wellbeing Team supports our students by teaching self, social and emotional understanding, guiding them to develop a toolbox of skills that enable them to navigate obstacles in academia and beyond with adaptability and self-awareness.
Our approach incorporates social and emotional learning with dynamic mindfulness to support students in developing these skills.
Social and emotional learning competencies are developed and reinforced not by programs but rather in the context of supportive environments, which lead to asset-building, risk reduction, enhanced health behaviours, and greater attachment to and engagement in school.Elias, M. (2008) et al.
Shaping a supportive environment of social and emotional learning means integrating our Wellbeing Programme into all areas of school life: everyone in our community shares an understanding that this is critical to academic engagement. This is supported through the IB Learner Profile, IB Approaches to Learning, parent wellbeing workshops and teacher feedback to the Wellbeing Team. Our curriculum, our PSHE programme, and our school Explorations Programme provide spaces for our students to understand the importance of agency, advocacy and civic literacy. These are skills that equip students to navigate their experiences and build resilience.
Our Wellbeing Team liaises with universities to research and develop practices that integrate social and emotional learning into all areas of student life. Halcyon is the only school in the world to lead a comprehensive programme of cognitive coaching, through which every student is assigned their own mentor – please read more below.
All our teachers are trained as cognitive coaches, and all students are assigned a teacher-mentor. Each student receives at least 15 minutes of private conversation with their mentor each week. Utilising the structured conversational strategies developed in their training, mentors guide their group of Grade 6-12 students to find their own solutions and areas for personal development.
“Even though the middle years of school might be tough, having a mentor helps everyone feel supported, and definitely creates a positive ripple effect across the community.” – Sofia, Grade 9
Personal, Social, Health and Economic education engages students in energetic school-wide activities to foster their collaborative and leadership skills. One activity involved learning to cooperate through political gameplay – please visit our blog on social and emotional learning to read more.
“Spending time together helps us see perspectives that are different from our own when it comes to our personal development.” – Nima, Grade 8
Mindfulness is “about allowing ourselves to see the present moment clearly.” We offer mindfulness as a Grade 6-10 Exploration option, and our teachers also embed mindfulness practices into classroom lessons to encourage effective and focused learning.
“You need to be in a good mindspace to study properly – at Halcyon, everyone understands that. It’s good to spend some time to refocus.”- Defne, Grade 8
Restorative Practice ensures that students never feel inclined to step away from our learning environment, inspiring students to take personal responsibility in resolving conflict and building healthier relationships with each other.
Read more about Restorative Practice.
Thoughts from our community and visitors on Halcyon’s Wellbeing Programme.
“Halcyon’s support to the wellbeing of students is exceptional. A definite strength of Halcyon is the extra effort, resources such as specialist staff and time that the Entire staff commit to not only the academic excellence of students, but their mental wellbeing as well.”
“Wellbeing is a priority, proactive and central to learning, which is rare in pressurised London. A friendly school that not only cares and supports but also energises pupils to strive, self-motivate, and learn.”
Key skills: social and emotional learning