Do you know that academic success is a  catalyst for mental health problems?

mental health problems

A report from the CDC revealed that In 2019, approximately 1 in 6 youth reported making a suicide plan in the past year, a 44% increase since 2009. Mental health month is such an important time to stop, reflect and take action.

Mental Health Awareness month is well underway and I wanted to share something that my friend Haeley (Chill Pill founder) has come across. One of the main attributing factors to impact mental health is academic success. Are students being too hard on themselves when it comes to grades? Looking back at my own experience, grades are a key metric I used to define my worth and future. It was my superpower as a student, so is it not surprising that this may lead to some kind of depression or anxiety? But how can we help students help themselves?

Mental health problems are prevalent amongst students and stress has been identified as a strong contributing factor. Research has documented that EQ is a protective factor for depression, anxiety and stress.

Now more than ever we need to build stronger relationships with students. We need to be able to take a pulse on their levels of anxiety and stress. Ensuring students are provided with human and instructional resources such as advisors, rubrics and clear expectations have proven to be helpful. Advisory helps to lower stress levels.

Each child should have one designated advisor to reach out if needed. Other ideas include giving students time for some accountable talk amongst their peers in small groups. Some students are too timid to ask questions in front of the entire class but small group discussions are less intimidating.

My colleague Dr. Dora Renaud, profoundly expresses that the recipe for academic success is relationships plus relevancy. Building strong relationships with teachers, parents and students to create a positive culture and climate in hand with relevant lessons is key to academic success!   

I had the opportunity to watch a panel of nationally recognized teachers talk about bringing students back “to a normal learning” environment. They each shared how they closed the door and let students express their worries and concerns about academic and non-related academic issues. One teacher shared the idea that rushing back or accelerating learning without focusing on strong emotional support could be detrimental to student success. 

Papaya tutors impact academic success. They are carefully selected for their high EQ to build relationships with students and provide the highest quality of STEM learning

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