As part of the Getting It Right For Every Child (GIRFEC) programme established by the Scottish government, emotional and mental wellbeing is an increasingly important part of the curriculum. It is necessary that children are aware of the wellbeing indicators and have the right support and strategies in place to ensure they get the help and support they need. This means that as well as adults having the responsibility, they have ways of handling different real-life scenarios themselves (Scottish Government, 2014).
Additionally, members of the subject class have expressed worries and concerns about their current academic status as well as other anxieties. To help them adapt and cope in these situations, it is important that they are explicitly taught strategies to ensure they are able to adapt and cope. Having witnessed many disputes among the subject class it has been noticed that their focus and concentration have significantly been affected. Therefore, it is important that at this stage, in preparation for their transition to secondary school, children are secure in managing emotions and have strategies to maintain their wellbeing. These can support them to embrace change and challenge with optimism, develop emotional resilience in dealing with challenging situations and aid their concentration (Scottish Government, 2006).
A recent poll has found that children living in low income households are three times more likely to suffer mental health problems than their more affluent peers (Audit General for Scotland and The Accounts Commission, 2018). Within the education system every child and young person should have access to mental well-being support in school. This is core to the curriculum and is the responsibility of all staff within schools. It is expected that school staff ensure children and young people are included, engaged and involved in their education as this is fundamental to achievement in school (Healthier Scotland: The Scottish Government, 2017). In a document by Smarter Scotland, it highlights the belief of the Scottish Government that through achieving better outcomes for children and young people in Health and Wellbeing it should contribute to improvements in literacy and numeracy (Smarter Scotland: The Scottish Government, 2018).
Through this practitioner enquiry the aim was to establish if carrying out mindful pausing in the classroom impacts on the focus and achievement of the pupils in the subject class. By implementing this technique at the beginning of the day and throughout if necessary. Particularly when the children need to refocus their energy. It was to be established if they could begin and/or return to their classwork refreshed and ready to learn.