Teaching Y11s how to identify and manage exam stress....
A few weeks ago, I started my day with a drive through the Yorkshire Dale. And what a beautiful drive. Driving through the rolling countryside and leading up to Leyburn…a little village which is where the students were starting their school day. I couldn't wait to meet them...
The school had put together a day for the Year 11s to focus on revision techniques, wellbeing, reducing stress and getting into the mind of the examiner. What a great idea…. an entire day to work with the year group and prepare them for the exam period ahead.
I was invited in to deliver some stress awareness and coping techniques for the students. I took the students through a series of yoga postures to help reduce muscle tension and prevent injuries which can be caused with extended periods of sitting and focused on spinal mobility and hamstring flexibility…both of which were much needed. A huge part of the workshops was also breath work. We covered the effects that breathing has on our nervous system and its role in helping us to relax, reduce stress, focus, sleep and aid memory all of which are vital during revision and exam periods….and life in general.
The students were so receptive and really enjoyed the sessions. We had a giggle during our yoga sections and everyone was quiet and relaxed during the breathing and guided relaxation sections. I had set the room up in a circle, dimmed the lights and filled the room with a grounding aromatherapy oil using my diffuser and the students loved the calming environment.
Students took a Top Tips sheet home to share with their parents and were encouraged to teach their parents the breathing techniques to look after each other.
A staff member joined in with the students in each session and this was great because the students saw them getting involved and everyone learnt the skills together. The teaches commented on how beneficial the sessions were for them too and how they are going to consider a teacher’s wellbeing day which I offer as part of my corporate wellbeing packages. I would love to return and help the fabulous teachers of Wensleydale High school and sixth form
All in all, it was a lovely day. The teachers and students were welcoming, friendly and respectful. They embraced the sessions even though they were ‘different’ to what they normally do which was great to see and be a part of. I hope you all continue to practice and benefit from the body and breath work.
To help everyone continue with what we have covered, I have created several videos which are on my You Tube channel ‘Yoga with Yorkshire Yogi’ which include:
- Yoga for students during exam time
- Yoga for a study break
- Breathing exercises for students
- Yoga for schools (To play at the beginning of a lesson to focus students)
So, let me know what you think students and teachers. If you would like any more videos making or have any suggestions just ask.
I look forward to coming back to school to help both the students and teachers in the future but until then look after yourselves and good luck with your exams. And lastly, thank you to Wensleydale school for the opportunity to come in and meet you all.
Lots of love and Yorkshire puddings