By Julián Gómez, HS Counselor
On Wednesday, March 24, Middle School and High School participated in our annual Health Day and it was super exciting and fun to see student engagement in all parts of the project. Each year, MS/HS Counselors have to plan a Health Day that targets those situations that might be important for our school community and, therefore, that need to be addressed and reflected on.
However, for the past couple of years, the National Honor Society (NHS) has played an integral role in the development of this event. This time, we met with the NHS several times to identify the main concerns of teenagers during the pandemic, such as: body image, concerns about life after COVID, the use of social media and missing out on social bonding. With these topics in mind, we decided to create six elective workshops from which students selected two according to their personal interests via a Google Forms. The names of the workshops were: “Today’s Use of Social Media”, “Body Image Reflective Session”, “Future After COVID”, “Cooperation Among Us”, “Body Positivity Goose Chase” and “Meeting New People”. Some of them were given by counselors and some others were given by advisors, but all of them were developed with the help and support of the NHS and the general ideas of the rest of the school community. Also, each one tackles specific needs of bonding and reflection very much needed in these times.
For example, “Cooperation Among Us” was a workshop in which students played the well-known game “Among Us'' with teachers. Through their participation, they reflected on the fact that cooperation is better than competition and they figured out who to trust and be friends with. In the same line but from a different perspective, the “Meeting New People!” workshop promoted student interaction by using short breakout sessions with specific icebreakers, which, in turn, created a friendly atmosphere of getting to know new people who are within the school but are isolated because of distance learning. All workshops created a reflective and critical thinking atmosphere which, as the feedback comments show, was very well received by teachers and students alike.
On top of these elective workshops we also repeated two ideas that have been successful in previous Health Day events, which are: to have a whole-wide school yoga and meditation session and a Talent Show that included students from MS and HS. The yoga and meditation session was developed with the help of two wonderful Peterson moms (one of whom is Tessi Gil) and they were a great addition to the event as they both promoted wellbeing in different ways. These sessions took place from 10:00 to 10:55 and included randomized same-generation students the advisors were in charge of.
Following these yoga and meditation sessions, students had their two elective workshops and, as a final activity, we had our virtual Talent Show via YouTube Live. This last event showed us the great talents and skills of our students and teachers. Dancing, singing, playing the piano, lip syncing and even playing Guitar Hero were some of the talents they showed us in the event and, as every year, we were amazed to see how talented our students are. I am sure this Health Day was an insightful, entertaining and reflective day for all students and teachers and we will continue promoting their wellbeing through these activities.
Below are a few pictures of the different sessions held during Health Day 2020-2021: