Promoting Positive Mental Health
To say that the last year in education has been a challenging one would be putting it lightly.
With the continuous transitions to online and in person learning, heavy public health restrictions in our schools and classrooms, ensuring the safety of our students and colleagues, and making certain that mental health is at the forefront, curriculum has most definitely taken a backseat. Nonetheless, establishing a normal routine for our students and doing our best to make school the enjoyable place it was is necessary.
A difficult adjustment to my teaching style (as well as my colleagues) has been the inability to allow students to physically work in groups. This has completely changed the way a lesson is designed and delivered, and has definitely taken some getting used to. A regular part of my mathematics classes entailed the use of the Wipebook Flipcharts, students thoroughly enjoyed working in groups together using these erasable charts; they were always a hit! One of my goals this year was keeping some sense of normalcy for my students; the ability to work with similar manipulatives or resources from previous years was one of these goals. The Wipebook Workbooks have been a perfect solution.
Establishing a strong sense of number fluency as well as the ability to manipulate numbers is key to success and confidence in mathematics. In order to develop number fluency I often begin my math classes with various games, my class’ favourite is 24. Students are required to create the number 24 using four numbers they are given. Each number may be used only once and any type of operation is permitted. In the past, students would use scrap paper or their notebooks to try and work through possible solutions, but now I have incorporated the Wipebook Workbooks. The students were so excited to use an erasable surface that was all to themselves. The students used whiteboard markers, highlighters and even washable markers. All worked well on the surface and wiped off/washed off easily.
Despite the fact that the landscape has greatly changed over the past year, the ultimate goal is promoting positive mental health in our students. Education is the consistent factor in each child’s life at the moment, therefore our impact as teachers is greater than ever. Excitement now comes from the smallest of gestures, actions or activities and we must be certain to look for any opportunity to encourage this. I encourage you to seek opportunities that allow you to fulfil some of the similar routines we once established in our classrooms.
Cristina Moscillo, Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic School, Toronto Catholic District School Board.
You May Also Like:
- Making Finance Personal with Wipebook Flipcharts
- Diving into Dependent & Independent Clauses
- You're Probably Using the Wrong Notebook