Educators have a very important role to play in promoting mental health and well-being at school. This resource is designed to support elementary educators (K-8) in this role by offering a repository of high-quality everyday mental health practices that can be easily incorporated into classroom routines. It is the result of a collaboration between the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) and School Mental Health ASSIST, with evidence/review support from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Provincial System Support Program. The Everyday Mental Health Classroom Resource has been informed by evidence and co-created with practicing educators to ensure that it will meet the needs of busy educators.
To learn more about this resource, you may wish to view this brief video from Jennifer Smolenaars, an Ontario educator who helped in developing and piloting the Everyday Mental Health Classroom Resource.
It is recognized that professional judgement is a foundational cornerstone of an educator’s work. On a daily basis, educators make many decisions about their practice using their professional judgement. This allows them to utilize their understanding of the context of their classroom and students, their professional knowledge and their training in order to facilitate learning in a meaningful way. It also allows them to select and utilize resources to maximize the growth of the students in their care.
Using professional judgement, educators can select from a variety of practices within the Everyday Mental Health Classroom Resource to enhance classroom conditions and build social emotional skills in ways that best meet the needs of their students. Each practice is described on an activity card that provides an outline, links to learning skills, links to related evidence, and instructions for implementation. In time, more practices will be added to the site. Your ideas regarding new practices are welcomed and are important to us. You are encouraged to use the Feedback page on this site and select Input to leave your ideas.
Mental Health Leaders (MHL) from school boards that piloted earlier versions of this resource contributed their knowledge to shaping and enhancing the practices included on this site. MHLs are also a resource to you as you engage with this resource.
Not sure who your board Mental Health Leader is? Consult this directory on the SMH ASSIST home site.
Want to learn more about how these Everyday Mental Health Classroom Resource practices can benefit you, as an educator, and also benefit your students? Click on the video below to hear from Jennifer Smolenaars experience.
The Everyday Mental Health Classroom Resource was made possible, in part, through funding from The J.W. McConnell Family Foundation and in alignment with the work of WellAhead. We are grateful for this important partnership.
One-in-seven (15%) Ontario students rate their mental health as fair/poor, with females being twice as likely as males to do so (21% vs. 11%).
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