Date Posted... Mar 2nd 2020
We have had a calm and relaxing week and weekend in Trennick, which ended with a day of raising awareness of and developing strategies for well-being and mental health, as the boys enjoyed attending four different well-being and mental health workshops on Sunday afternoon.
The first workshops were run by Ms. Vicky Fiol, who is the Head of Learning Support. We are lucky that Ms. Fiol works in boarding – she is the Resident Tutor in Pentreve House – and that she was able to share her knowledge of coping with exam stress. All the boys were able to take something away from this session, even if it was the simple message of remaining positive and planning ahead.
The boys then moved onto the second workshop run by Mr. Peter Thomson, who the boys know well as the Resident Tutor of Poltisco and teacher of music. Evidence suggests that doing social activities in the performing arts can boost mental health, so Mr. Thomson led a singing workshop to give the boys a taste of joining a choir. There is a special tradition of singing local folk songs in Cornwall, so Mr. Thomson taught the boys how to sing Trelawney (regarded as the Cornwall ‘national anthem’) and South Australia which is a song that commemorates the number of Cornish who emigrated to Australia in the 1800s. The boys will be performing the song in the Boarders’ Charity Concert next term, which we hope to live stream.
The third workshop was yoga and mindfulness. A local yoga instructor took the boys through various stretches, poses and breathing routines before encouraging them to relax and meditate. It was great to see them buy into the meditation and enjoy fifteen minutes of peace and stillness.
The last session was run by Mrs. Mulready, who helped the boys learn the art of mandala, which has been shown to be a very therapeutic form of drawing. Mrs. Mulready was pleasantly surprised by some of the beautiful shapes that the boys were able to produce.
It is hoped that the boys adopt some of the above strategies to help cope with the demands of teenage life. Next week their personal, social, health and economic education will continue with healthy eating week, when we will try to encourage them to eat more vegetables and fruit, and waste less food.