The Rise of the Machines: how education can meet the challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
Our current education system is becoming more narrow due to government accountability measures that could have a devastating impact on levels of employment and mental health in the face of an artificial intelligence driven Fourth Industrial Revolution. Fundamentally, this blog posits that any contemplation exercise such as meditation, yoga or mindfulness alongside a educational curriculum that includes a strong emphasis on creativity, entrepreneurship and digital technology is the solution to sustaining strong employment, a stable economy and high levels of mental well-being in the UK.
Back to School – Improving Pupil Health and Well-being in the Light of Ofsted: a Whole School and Classroom Approach
In the light of the new Ofsted criteria which assesses schools’ commitment to mental well-being, Yoyogasoul looks at some whole institution and classroom based approaches in developing character, resilience and emotional well-being.
As an ex-teacher who suffered severe burnout ten years ago with chronic fatigue, which after a period of absence from school led me to greater self-care by incorporating yoga and mindfulness into my daily routine, I fully understand how poor mental and physical health due to workload is one of the biggest issues in education with stress being the single biggest reason for days taken off by teachers.
Though I am not denying that the responsibility of workload and stress rests with the DFE and school management team, the start of the academic year, whether you are an NQT or seasoned teacher, is your time to set good, healthy intentions to mitigate against teacher burnout by putting your health first. Here are a few suggestions – many are fairly commonsense, and do take some effort to implement, but try to do what works best for you.
The Light on the Yoga Sutra of Patanjali (Iyengar, 2002) is relevant to the role and practice of an effective teacher if we translate them to a different and more modern context of teaching within schools and colleges….
As a way to understand the needs of my new students at the start of an academic year, I asked them to share with me, confidentially, something about themselves by completing the sentence, ‘I wish my teacher knew…’ which they then dropped in my ‘student voice’ post box.
“Now students sit down, breath deeply and get ready to Cat Cow” is not the usual last minute advice for pupils preparing for assessments. However, for a growing number of stressed students it is exactly the guidance needed before heading into an examination room, which many fear will shape the rest of their lives.