Promoting Mental Wellness
Overall physical wellness promotes learning and growth, so it is easy to see that a child having an asthma attack, suffering from a high fever, or having an allergic reaction would experience significant barriers to learning.
The same is true for mental wellness. A child experiencing anxiety, depression, substance abuse or other forms of mental distress, will also experience significant barriers to learning.
Symptoms of mental illnesses in children can include disruptive behaviour, lack of effort and truancy, but mental illness may also manifest as the quiet child in the back of the class who never makes waves.
And while we tend to think of mental illnesses as rare extremes, they are as common as asthma, fevers and allergies in children. In fact, one in five people, children and adults alike, may be experiencing mental illness at any given time. And like all illnesses, if left unchecked, symptoms can become more severe and treatment more difficult.
Childhood and adolescence are vulnerable times of both mental and physical growth, but the good news is that many forms of mental illness are preventable, by building safe and caring environments for children, teaching them and having them practice mental wellness strategies, and identifying problems early, so specialized or community supports can be provided where needed.
All Rocky View Schools students are involved in social and emotional learning programs. To learn more, click here.