Taradale Primary School teachers learn mindfulness techniques to help children cope with Covid pressure

Mindfulness facilitator, Daniel Devcich from Auckland, giving exercises to teaching staff at Taradale Primary. Photo/Warren Buckland

Taradale Primary School is preparing for Omicron’s arrival in Hawke’s Bay as the children return to school and try to make the first few weeks in class a little less stressful.

He has joined more than 230 schools across the country, embracing the mindfulness-based wellness curriculum, Pause, Breathe, Smile.

The primary school wanted to be ready to support the mental well-being of its students as much as possible as they begin to return to class.

A key force behind bringing Taradale Primary School into the program, teacher Raelene Hill said the program is another way for the school to add to its hauora.

Pause, Breathe, Smile is a New Zealand developed, researched and internationally recognized mindfulness based wellness program for schools. It aims to give children the mental skills to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing, uncertain world.

With summer vacation coming to an end, the uncertainty of Covid is making some students anxious to know what to expect.

On Thursday, teachers from Taradale Primary School returned to school for a training day, led by Southern Cross.

The program teaches skills such as how to regulate emotions, develop self-awareness, and build positive relationships with others.

Principal Marty Hantx said it was a great day and the staff got a lot out of it.

“Our staff are one of our great resources, when they are calm and happy, our children are calm and happy,” Hantx said.

A Southern Cross spokeswoman said 73 per cent of parents of young children were worried about their ability to cope with the current environment.

Southern Cross’s involvement enables Pause, Breathe, Smile to be made available free of charge to any elementary or middle school nationwide.

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