C. Kelly

Nov 062012

Impact Arts are currently touring Kamikaze to High Schools followed by post show discussions with the young people.

The Tour dates are:

Thu 1st Nov – 09:30 Marr College Troon
Fri 2nd Nov – 09:30 Ayr Academy Ayr
Mon 5th Nov – 09:30 Loudon Academy Galston
Mon 5th Nov – 14:00 Doon Academy Dalmellington
Tue 6th Nov – 09:30 Kilmarnock Academy Kilmarnock
Tue 6th Nov – 14:00 Girvan Academy Girvan
Tue 6th Nov – 18:30 Westmuir High Glasgow (Carntyne)
Wed 7th Nov – 09:05 Cumnock Academy Cumnock
Wed 7th Nov – 13:25 Auchinleck Academy Auchinleck
Thu 8th Nov – 09:00 Stewarton Academy Stewarton
Thu 8th Nov – 13:45 Grange Academy Kilmarnock
Fri 9th Nov – 09:10 St Joseph’s Academy Kilmarnock
Fri 9th Nov – 13:30 James Hamilton Academy Kilmarnock

For more information see the website.

Oct 242012


The University of Edinburgh, in cooperation with the University of New Hampshire (UNH) Survey Center, is conducting a survey to be completed by teachers in primary and secondary schools. The survey seeks to obtain a picture of how teachers support learners on the autistic spectrum in Physical Education. The results will enable a workshop event developed by Andrew Horrell from the University of Edinburgh and Michelle Grenier from UNH to be focused on instructional strategies that support the learning needs of the pupils. It will also provide a comparative perspective on the use of technology that supports learning. 

If you wish to attend this free workshop on the 27th October 10-4pm. 

Then please sign up here. 


The workshop will take place at The University of Edinburgh, St Leonard?s land. More information about the venue and a programme for the day will be sent out via email to those who sign up. Places are limited. 

This survey will only be successful with your help. We know that you are extremely busy, but please take a few minutes to complete this confidential online survey. Your responses will not be connected to you in any way and will be compiled by the UNH Survey Center and reported to Andrew and Michelle in aggregate only. Please complete the survey by October 25th, 2012 for your responses to be included in the report. Simply click the following link to find out more and begin the survey. 


Thank you very much once again for your participation. If you have questions about this survey please contact Tracy Keirns at Tracy.Keirns@unh.edu. If you have questions about the workshop then please contact Andrew Horrell andrew.horrell@ed.ac.uk

May 282012

This week sees the launch of a new education pack which will enable secondary school teachers and other youth workers to address some of the issues around mental health and wellbeing.  ‘That’s Not Me…’ uses the medium of film to explore mental health through the eyes of young people.  The 12 minute drama was written and performed by young people with professional advice and input from adult health professionals and film makers.  The project was jointly funded by two projects within Scottish Borders, Choose Life which aims to reduce the rate of suicide and Voice of My Own (VOMO) which gives young people an opportunity to express themselves through the moving image.  The project also received input from Penumbra Youth Project, a community based mental health project working with 16-21 year olds in Scottish Borders.

The film was well received by young people, schools and health professionals as well as winning acclaim as an artistic endeavour in the wider world of film making.  Not surprisingly, it was felt that it was important to make it available to a wider audience and after securing additional funding, VOMO and Choose Life worked together to create this pack.

Robert Sproul-Cran directed the film and designed the pack. He said ‘The group which developed the project drew on personal experiences and emotions, which gives the film a real authenticity. The powerful performances by Perri Walsh as Rosie and Shelagh Hynd as her mother really strike a chord. I’m just delighted that we now have the chance to take this significant work to a wider audience, supported by the excellent material created by Haylis in the education pack. It may just be the most important project I’ve ever been involved in.’

The pack will be distributed to all schools and youth groups in Scottish Borders and is available to buy for other organisations across Scotland.  For further information, please contact Haylis on hmackay@scotborders.gov.uk tel 01835 824000.

Apr 272012

The healthy way to get to school – Travelling Green.

Travelling Green is a complete six-week programme aimed at P5 level; it comes with lesson plans and wall charts. It gives children and their parents the skills and confidence to walk to school. Walking to school is good for children’s development as well and their physical and mental health. Travelling Green has strong Health and Wellbeing Curriculum links covering topics like for example; the circulatory and respiratory systems.

For more information, see link below;


Recent research has shown that children who do Travelling Green are generally more physically active than children who do not. Increasing children’s daily physical activity is essential for tackling the obesity epidemic, one of the key challenges facing Scotland’s population as described in Scotland’s Chief Medical Officer’s annual report. We need to make active modes of travel children’s first choice and make physical activity an everyday habit for Scottish children.

It has been shown that active children become active adults. Physical activity has recently been made a national indicator in Scotland. Walking to school is an excellent everyday opportunity for children to get the recommended amount of physical activity which is vital for maintaining their health and wellbeing. In addition, active children do better at school. When asked children want to be more physically active and they want to travel actively to school. Travelling Green is a resource that increases children’s physical activity in small manageable steps.

The resource was popular with teachers; they gave the following feedback;

“Well thought out and children benefited from it, many changed their route and started walking together in groups”.

“Easy to use with lots of additional resources and support materials”

“Good resource, making cross-curricular links”.

The Travelling Green resources were developed in partnership by West Dunbartonshire Council and are available for free to all Scottish schools. 

There are also free Travelling Green flipcharts for interactive whiteboards available from Promethean Planet (see included step by step guide). We also include a guide for the Travelling Green resources and a flyer to circulate to your schools.

To get the resources sent to your school contact;

cecilia.oram@sustrans.org.uk 0131 346 9777

Mar 072012

The Princess Royal Trust for Carers, Young Carers Mental Health Toolkit is now available online for anyone working with young carers.  The toolkit was developed in direct response to worker requests for more resources around promoting positive mental health and wellbeing.  The toolkit also addresses requests made by young carers for more information and help in dealing with emergency situations and building support.  The toolkit was developed by Young Carers Mental Health Development Coordinator from Princess Royal Trust for Carers, in partnership with Scottish Young Carers Services Alliance and funded by The Scottish Government. You can access the toolkit here.

 Alternatively it can be found on www.youngcarers.net click on Professionals page and then on subheading Health and follow the links to the toolkit.

In addition The Princess Royal Trust for Carers website has excellent information and resources for anyone working with Young Carers.

Feb 202012

The presence of friends mitigates negative experiences, study proves

“Stand by me” is a common refrain when it comes to friendship; however, new research from Concordia University proves that the concept goes beyond pop music: keeping friends close has real physiological and psychological benefits. 

The presence of a best friend directly affects children going through negative experiences, as reported in the recent Concordia-based study published in Developmental Psychology. The study was conducted with the collaboration of researchers at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and the University of Nebraska at Omaha.

Feelings of self-worth and levels of cortisol, a hormone produced naturally by the adrenal gland in direct response to stress, are largely dependent on the social context of a negative experience.
“Having a best friend present during an unpleasant event has an immediate impact on a child’s body and mind,” says author William M. Bukowski, a psychology professor and director of the Concordia Centre for Research in Human Development. “If a child is alone when he or she gets in trouble with a teacher or has an argument with a classmate, we see a measurable increase in cortisol levels and decrease in feelings of self-worth.”
A total of 55 boys and 48 girls from grades 5 and 6 in local Montreal schools took part in the study. Participants kept journals on their feelings and experiences over the course of four days and submitted to regular saliva tests that monitored cortisol levels. 

Concordia psychology professor William M. Bukowski | Photo by Concordia University
Although previous studies have shown that friendships can protect against later adjustment difficulties, this study is the first to definitively demonstrate that the presence of a friend results in an immediate benefit for the child undergoing a negative experience.
These results have far-reaching implications. “Our physiological and psychological reactions to negative experiences as children impacts us later in life,” explains Bukowski. “Excessive secretion of cortisol can lead to significant physiological changes, including immune suppression and decreased bone formation. Increased stress can really slow down a child’s development.”

According to Bukowski, when it comes to feelings of self-worth, “What we learn about ourselves as children is how we form our adult identities. If we build up feelings of low self-worth during childhood, this will translate directly into how we see ourselves as adults.”

The study builds on previous research at Concordia that has shown multiple friendships inoculate against negative outcomes such as bullying, exclusion and other kinds of aggression.
About the study
 The paper, “The Presence of a Best Friend Buffers the Effects of Negative Experiences,” published in the journal Developmental Psychology, was authored by William M. Bukowski of Concordia University in Canada, Ryan E. Adams of the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, and John Bruce Santo of the University of Nebraska at Omaha in the United States.

Feb 132012

Health and Wellbeing Award

This category recognises schools and pre schools that are developing a holistic approach to health and wellbeing of children and young people, involving knowledge and understanding, skills and attributes necessary for mental, emotional, social and physical wellbeing.

To nominate a school:  http://www.scottisheducationawards.org.uk/index.asp

Feb 072012

Centre for Confidence and Well-being

New Events

The next Centre for Confidence and Well-being event is with Jo Swinson MP who will talk about both her role as Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary group on Well-being at Westminster as well as the Body Confidence Campaign which was set up in response to the growing concern that photoshopped media images are affecting people’s confidence – particularly young women’s feeling about themselves. This FREE event is on Wednesday 15 February from 5pm to 7pm in the Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow. Please get in touch to register your interest as places are limited.

The Centre is also planning an event called Wanting, Watching and Well-being at the Aye Right! Book Festival on Wednesday 15 March at 7.30pm at the Mitchell Library in Glasgow. The speaker is Professor Agnes Cairn who wrote the recent UNICEF report on young people’s well-being in the UK which suggested that materialism may be a major reason why the UK scores much lower in child well-being than other countries. Tickets available through Aye Right!

Jan 232012

Walk Once a Week – WOW – Badge Design Competition

2012’s WoW badge design competition is here, and we’re delighted to confirm that the theme is ‘AROUND THE WORLD‘. We are inviting schools to get their pupils’ creativity flowing and design what could be one of the official WoW badges for 2012/13.

Each winner will have his or her design transformed into the monthly WoW badges worn by hundreds of thousands of children across the country, and will be invited to an awards ceremony and fun day out in London in May 2012.

Our annual WoW badge design competition is one of the UK’s biggest art competitions, with over 150,000 primary school children taking part to design badges for a specific theme. Each participant school is invited to submit three entries for consideration. In 2011 our judging panel viewed over 1,800 fantastic entries on a Sport theme; our biggest competition yet! The deadline for receiving entries will be 16 March. 


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