In kindergarten, the goal of the wellness program is for students to learn about themselves as how they relate to others. Homeroom time is set aside daily to address important topics such as sharing, advocating for one’s needs, conflict resolution, and accepting others’ differences. The Responsive Classroom Curriculum, a pro-social competency program, provides students with a structured, safe, and consistent environment in which they can develop communication, self-control, and interpersonal problem-solving skills. Students who successfully complete the kindergarten wellness program will have a solid foundation in:
Advocating for themselves
Independently problem solving with peers
Developing a vocabulary for conflict resolution
Practicing basic social skills such as greeting one another
In first grade, the goal of the wellness program is for students to learn about themselves as how they relate to others. During homeroom time, students address important topics such as sharing, advocating for one’s needs, conflict resolution, and accepting others’ differences. The Open Circle Curriculum, a pro-social competency program, provides students with a structured, safe, and consistent environment in which students can develop communication, self-control, and interpersonal problem-solving skills. First graders develop a foundation in
Sharing needs and feelings with adults when necessary
Understanding and identifying others’ feelings, and responding appropriately
Understanding the concepts of inclusion and exclusion and demonstrating willingness to include others in activities
Using mindfulness to recognize one’s own feelings and emotions and to calm one’s body and mind when upset
Mindfulness is the focus of wellness education in second grade. As a group, students participate in discussions about feelings, emotions, socializing, and confliction resolution. Students learn how to become more aware of their feelings, use calming activities to focus their attention, and slow their bodies down.
Students who successfully complete the grade two wellness program will be able to:
Advocate for themselves
Show self control
Identify and communicate emotions
Begin to decipher when adult intervention is, and is not, needed in peer conflict
Show empathy by responding compassionately to others’ struggles
Recognize and appreciate that differences such as race, gender, ethnicity, and sexual and gender orientation make a community stronger, not more divisive
Understand that people have differences of opinions and views on a variety of topics
Use mindfulness to regulate emotional and physical response to environmental stimuli, both positive and negative
Learning about yourself and the ways you relate to others is the focus of Wellness education in the Lower School. In grade three, classes address a number of important topics such as advocating for one’s needs, expressing emotions appropriately, resolving conflicts, mindfulness, and accepting others’ differences. Classes are structured, safe, and consistent environments where students can develop communication skills, self control, and interpersonal problem solving skills.
Throughout the year, fourth graders participate in a Wellness class that meets one time per rotation. Students address the issues of cliques, bullying, decision making, creating an inclusive environment, nutrition, problem solving, self-advocacy, mindfulness, and cooperation. The curriculum is tailored to meet the needs of the students based upon class social dynamics, school climate, and other issues that may emerge.
Sixth grade Wellness classes meet weekly and are taught in gender-specific classrooms. As students prepare for the social dynamics of the Upper School, Wellness classes begin to delve more deeply into topics relevant to adolescence, including peer pressure, time management, sleep, stress management, physical boundaries, responsible online behavior, nutrition, getting one’s self out of uncomfortable situations, and bullying.
Seventh grade Wellness classes are gender-specific. Topics may include sexual development, nutrition, accepting others’ differences, stereotyping, bullying prevention and response, mindfulness, conflict resolution, boundaries, cyber safety and responsible use of technology, keeping one’s self safe, stress management, and tobacco and alcohol awareness. The single-gender classes provide students the opportunity to feel comfortable exploring challenging topics in a way that is most relevant to their experiences.
Students in our co-educational eighth grade Wellness classes delve more deeply into a range of topics that includes sexual development, nutrition, accepting others’ differences, stereotyping, bullying prevention and response, mindfulness, conflict resolution, boundaries, cyber safety and responsible use of technology, keeping one’s self safe, stress management, and tobacco and alcohol awareness. Students also explore how outside influences such as the media affect decision making. Other topics include resisting peer pressure, dating and relationship violence, practical ways to address temptation to use substances and become involved in premature sexual experimentation, alcohol, marijuana and prescription drug misuse prevention, and the development of leadership skills. The relatively small, mixed-gender classes allow for discussion aimed to help students understand others’ points of view and to prepare students for the social dynamics of high school.
Students in co-educational ninth grade Wellness classes are treated very much as high school students. Students address a number of important topics related to the secondary school search process, drug and alcohol education (including drinking and driving, regrettable sexual acts under the influence, and the dangers of prescription misuse,), the legal implications of underage sexual experimentation, understanding teen depression, and bullying of various forms. Leadership is an important component of the ninth grade Wellness experience, and students participate in a leadership development trip at the beginning of the year to set students up for success. Each student learns about his or her own specific leadership style and how this style interfaces with other leadership styles. The students also participate in a multi-class ethics unit focused on critical and individual decision-making, as opposed to blind obedience to authority or the popular crowd. Lastly, Wellness class is the place where students begin to process the many conflicting emotions associated with leaving Fay School and starting anew.