Welcome Michael Naughton
We welcome our new Mental Health Practitioner Michael Naughton who commenced at Lowanna College in term 3.
Michael has many years of experience working with young people in various roles. The wellbeing team are thrilled to have Michael’s expertise in mental health awareness so we can continue to support our students to strengthen their wellbeing.
Michael has qualifications and training in Social Work, Psychology, Child Advocacy, Family Therapy, Mental Health in Families and Family Violence specialised education.
Michael has extensive work experience in clinical mental health settings, agencies specialising in trauma, facilitating adult education, working as a part of the behaviour support team within education, supporting Victims of Crime clients and currently has his own private counselling practice.
Please join us in welcoming Michael and feel free to introduce yourself if you see Michael around the school.
Breakfast Club Update
A reminder that Breakfast Club is available to students each Tuesday and Thursday morning from 7.45 am to 8.20 am. We encourage students who have not had a bite to eat to come along and get some toast and hot milo.
The breakfast club team of helpers is also looking for anyone who would like to volunteer their time, one or both of the days we provide breakfast club. Please let the Wellbeing team know if you can help out. We also love donations to go towards Breakfast club – Margarine, Cheese Slices, and Milo are the things we would greatly appreciate.
Respectful Relationships Update
We have continued to build on our Respectful Relationships implementation team at Lowanna College. To strengthen the team we have staff from various areas – Principal class, Wellbeing, Teaching, Education Support and Mental Health expertise. We will be looking at student and parent voice in the coming weeks and in to term one.
While Respectful Relationships is a whole school approach and includes discussions, training and awareness events, there is also a curriculum with year level based activities to support the work and message of Respectful Relationships. In 2022 Lowanna will begin to look at incorporating this work into classrooms.
Achievement Program Update
Mental Health Benchmark
We are close to finalising our Mental Health benchmark for the achievement program. This year Emma and I have attended some classes and presented interactive sessions on mental health. The Wellbeing Team have been attending various webinars about supporting young people and their families. I will be working closely with our Mental Health Practitioner Michael Naughton to provide additional training to the Wellbeing Team and staff as we move in to 2022.
We have some exciting programs and initiatives planned for 2022 which will continue to support student mental health and there will be various events and awareness days held next year that will support this important topic and work we will be doing. Student voice will play a big part in the promotion of our planned activities for next year. At Lowanna, we value what students have to say about their own mental health and how it can continue to be improved.
Once our mental health benchmark is finalised, we will be working on our third benchmark – Sexual Health.
The Achievement Program is aligned to the World Health Organization's model for Health Promoting Schools and Healthy Workplaces.
Mindfulness- Smiling Mind
Managing our emotions and supporting each other can be challenging at the best of times. Therefore, now more than ever, we all need to be doing our best to regularly pause, take a breath and be proactive in looking after ourselves and others.
We know that this isn’t always easy, you need to find different practical things you can do to take care of your own wellbeing.
When we are mindful, we become aware and conscious of things around us and within us. Mindfulness is the intentional act of paying attention and being completely engaged with whatever is happening around us. Simply put, mindfulness is living in the now, or in the present. In doing so, it gives us more choice about how we respond to challenges we may face and the ability to choose where we place our attention.
So, a great place to learn about mindfulness is with the FREE Smiling Mind program.
Smiling Mind offers a variety of online meditation sessions and other daily meditation activities suitable for children, young people and adults.
The app can measure progress and skills, as well as set daily meditation reminders. As your meditation skills develop, the sessions become more advanced. Smiling Mind is an easy to use app that will help reduce stress and improve wellbeing.
The app is free and can be downloaded from the Smiling Mind - Apple App Store and Smiling Mind - Google Play Store. This is a great tool for students to use at night, early in the morning before school and on weekends.
Parenting Support Programs
Anglicare Victoria’s ParentZone are running free online programs to assist families in supporting young people and looking after yourself and your families. Below are two wonderful options to choose from (you can even book in to both).
Bookings are essential – Contact ParentZone Gippsland on 5135 9555 or email them firstname.lastname@example.org
Bullying: Building a Toolkit to help your Child.
Do you want to understand what bullying is? Recognise the signs your child is being bullied, know how to support your child, help your child build resilience and learn protective behaviours.
When: Thursday 9th December
Where: Online via Zoom
Time: 1.00pm - 3.00pm
Making time for self-care – Do you want to feel less overwhelmed and deal with anxious feelings? Want to improve your confidence and self-esteem? Build resilience for yourself and your family? Take time out for yourself?
When: Friday 10th December
Where: Online via Zoom
Time: 10.30am - 12.30pm