Stress Awareness Month

Sweaty palms, racing heart, feeling a bit sick? These are symptoms of stress.

Stress used to be extremely helpful to us all but, in a modern world, stress can do more harm than good.

Back when human beings lived in the wild we needed stress. If a big, scary, human-eating animal jumped out at us stress helped keep us from harm. Stress gave our bodies the energy and instinct to either stay and fight, or to run away as fast as we could; this is the fight-or-flight response.

The problem with our fight-or-flight reaction is that our bodies are not always able to tell the difference between a big hairy beast and an exam. So our body reacts to the idea of an exam in the same way as it would have done to a monster!

Next month we are celebrating Stress Awareness Month. It is an opportunity to learn how stress affects the body, and share ways to deal with it. More young people are stressed about exams. Read our article below to find out how you can use exam-stress to your advantage.

Deep breaths, exercise, getting enough sleep and laughter all help if you are feeling stressed. This week, get prepared for April. Put time aside to relax and beat stress. Our activities will help get you into a stress-free zone.

Read Our Story

Assembly

Watch this short film from the BBC about how to manage stress.You could also use this week as an opportunity to talk about how mindfulness techniques can help when we feel stressed. TES have some great mindfulness resources.

Activities

  1. Stress Awareness Month is the time when we can make a special effort to be nice to people who are stressed and anxious and, most importantly, look after yourself! Try a relaxing mindfullness film in your class. Films are available for early years and for older children.
  2. Write a list of activities you do which help you feel less stressed. Share these with a partner. What did you learn from their list?
  3. Kat finds life very stressful, Ferdy does not. Read their character profiles by clicking on their names. Now design a short cartoon strip telling the story of Ferdy helping Kat overcome her worries.
  4. Challenge yourself to do a different de-stressing activity every day. Write a list of seven things you want to do. This could be anything from cooking, practising a musical instrument, playing sport, making a card for a friend or playing in the park. You could use the list you made with a partner from the activities above. Tick the activities off each time you complete one.