Sparklers consists of 36 activities that teachers can use to help their year 1-8 students feel calmer, happier, and more ready to learn. The activities take between 10 minutes and 1 hour, are aligned with the school curriculum, and cover a wide range of wellbeing topics including managing emotions, living in the moment, being grateful and showing kindness.
Calmer, more focused learners
Dr Lucy Hone, research associate at AUT University’s Human Potential Centre and All Right? Advisory Committee member, says student wellbeing is strongly linked to learning.
“Students with high levels of wellbeing make better learners, find it easier to focus in the classroom and are able to build stronger and meaningful relationships,” says Lucy.
“Sparklers enables young people to learn strategies that improve wellbeing and build resilience. The activities are designed to help students feel good and function well, and improve their ability to cope with change and navigate the challenges life throws at them,” says Lucy.
Activities that are simple, easy, and proven to work
Dr Harith Swadi, Canterbury DHB's clinical director for Child Adolescent and Family, says Sparklers has been developed in response to requests from schools for more support to meet the wellbeing needs of Canterbury students post-quake.
“There’s a tremendous desire amongst schools to do more in the wellbeing area but up until now there hasn’t been a lot of practical guidance on how to go about it,” says Harith.
“We’ve piloted Sparklers in several Canterbury schools and the response has been amazing. Schools are incredibility enthusiastic about Sparklers and the activities are making a real difference,” says Harith
For all Kiwi kids
Although Sparklers had its genesis in recovery from the greater Christchurch earthquakes, its content is relevant to tamariki throughout New Zealand.