Project Psyc: Preteen Mental Well-Being

Emotional Well-Being Survey:  https://goo.gl/forms/BTs8ok6ffFeSpFy82  

Topic: Adolescent Mental Health

ASPIRE2 LogoGrade7

Members: (Atom, Chica, Champion, Nerdie, Mockingjay,  Enviro and Chickadee)

ASPIRE Mentor: Matt Gilbert

Subtopics:

Research Questions:

Do students feel that school helps or contributes to depression anxiety and related behaviours?

Do students feel that the school environment has a positive or negative affect on their emotion and mental wellbeing.

Research Tools:

Google autocomplete: common questions related to mental health and school

  • Surveys (primary study method)
    • Having many options and an “other” sections
    • Anonymous
    • Open ended answers and grouping afterword

Experimental Design:

Survey Subtopics (In Progress!):

  • Peer relationships
    • Do peer relationships make you feel better or worse?
    • Does having friends help you cope with your feelings or do friends worsen the matter?
  • Types of learning (eg. tests, partner work, presentations and public speaking)
    • How do different types of learning (modes of instruction and investigation)` affect your learning
    • What elements (chalk and talk, worksheets, group work)  in the learning environment affect your learning negatively or positively?
    • How could these elements be modified to create the best learning environment?
    • Is a degree of anxiety / tension/ competition / cooperation / empathy / external accountability / reward important to promote learning?  Hockey example….
    • Do certain teaching methods cause more stress than others
    • Does group work make your learning easier or does it become more stressful.
  • Self Confidence
    • Others  (relationships with peers, teachers)
    • Tests and Evaluation
    • How important is the willingness to take on the risk of failure to developing self confidence?
    • How much does risk taking in learning produce anxiety? Is that good or bad?
    • Does talking on challenges help you build self confidence?
    • Activities (Clubs and sports, Lunch activities )
    • What is your greatest source of competition (others ….self)
    • Personal life
    • Social media
  • Sports and Social Events
    • Does competition help you and make you feel better
    • Do you enjoy social events
    • Does peer to peer conversation stress you out

Research Outcomes:
Recommendations
Mental Health Personified

DRAFT –Now we must refine our focus:

Rate the following factors as they happen in the school environment according to how you feel they affect anxiety, depression and related behaviours?
or
Rate the following factors/examples/situations in your school environment as to how you think they affect your emotional well being.

Discussed sub topics:

Ways or Modes of Learning

  • online learning
  • Discussion
  • Marks/Tests
  • Group work or Self / In dependendent work
  • Hands on work

Peer Relationships

  • peer pressure?
  • does it influence your emotional well being?
  • are you often with your peers?
  • rate how your peer relationships affect your emotional well being

Sports / Extra Curricular Activities

  • does competition help you de-stress?
  • do sports add extra stress on you? if so in  good or bad ways
  • does the team/work group of the activity make you feel good/safe/happy?

Self Confidence

  • do you feel good about your self confidence?
  • do things like school and peers affect this matter?
  • do you think clothing and the way you dress affect this matter?

Social Media / Media

  • How does social media contribute to your self confidence?
  • Do you enjoy social medias/ do you like them
  • Do you think social media is good? if so why?
  • What social medias have the biggest influence on you?
  • How do the social expectation effect your person thoughts?

Definition of Wellness

Negitive Emotional Wellbeing
Unwellness
Positive Emotional Wellbeing
Wellness
- cup is half empty
- mood swings, ongoing low mood
-low self esteem
-locking yourself away, withdrawing
-isolating yourself
-not caring about health
-low energy or motivation
-easily overwhelmed
-find it difficult to meet daily tasks
-irritable and restless
-cup is half full
-able to control emotions
-confident in your abilities
-hanging out with friends and family
-being involved
-keeping healthy
-have energy to get things done
-ability to bounce back
-able to meet daily challenges
-calm and intentive

Administering the Survey

Student participating in the Emotional Well-being Survey.The students each had a quiet private place to complete the online survey.
Survey 1 copySurvey 2

Emotional Well-Being Survey:  https://goo.gl/forms/BTs8ok6ffFeSpFy82  

Analyzing the Results

Analyzing the Data using Pivot Tables in Google SheetsAnalyzing the Data and creating Charts
Mental Health 2Mental Health1

Click the LINKS to see the results of our survey for each section listed below:

Peer Relationships ????

These questions focus on your emotional well-being when working, socializing, and interacting with your fellow students in and around the school.  A peer can refer to a friend, an older student, or simply the other students in your school you may not be friends with.

Social Media/Media ?

In these questions you’ll be asked about your connections and feelings towards social media and tabloids. (Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, TV/video, Newspaper, films, etc)

Types of Learning ✏️

Here we will be asking about the types of learning in your school environment and how it affects you. For example if you learn better doing group work does your classroom participate in such activities.

Extra Curricular ?⛹?

Here are some questions asking about the activities you participate in, and other school related events.

Resources??‍⚕️

In this section we are trying to understand wether or not you know of, or see resources in your school and community.

Findings and Recommendations

Peer Relationships ????

Our survey showed that the majority of Grade 7’s worry about what their peers think about them. This shows the importance of providing self-esteem building activities to students in grade seven. We think that having class discussions around making sure students feel positive about themselves and have a good self-worth is important. From our survey we found that most grade 7 have a positive effect on their peers. However, our survey did show that a few students do not feel supported by their classmates.  Discussion around the need for your class to know what it means to be inclusive may help the minority of kids that do not feel accepted. (Inclusivity – an intention or policy of including people who might otherwise be excluded or marginalized.)  Most students have experience positive peer pressure at school.  Our recommendation would be to use this strong point about our school and ask students to seek out, (be on the look-out for those students) classmates that might need positive support.

Findings and Recommendations

Social Media/Media ?

As part of our survey students were asked, “Do you ever get bullied on social media?”  Thirty-two out of forty-one grade sevens responded that they had never been bullied on social media. Although this definitely indicates that the majority of students do not get bullied on social media, we were still concerned that eight students have experienced bullying in the “rarely” to “often” range.  The results also showed that one person had answered “Always”. Since this was an anonymous survey it is impossible for us to directly help this person, however we believe it is still very important to look into. The teachers could lead class discussions on what is feels like to be bullied.  I think the school should try to make people/kids feel comfortable and tell them that there are counsellors in the school that they can go and talk to.  There was a lot of “never bullied” reactions. This would be good to look into to make sure that all them were answering as truthfully as they possibly could. Saying, “I do get bullied” is hard to say. We could make sure they feel like they are in a comfortable environment, so they can truthfully talk about it.

Findings and Recommendations

Types of Learning ✏️

After analyzing the data for the “Types of Learning” section of our survey, we have come to the conclusion that there are several possible recommendations to do with the learning environment at school.  When giving instructions to assignments, teachers could give more than one option for project style and or type. For example, giving students the options of using power point or a written assignment. Another recommendation is putting people into partners who they normally don’t talk and or interact with.  It may also be better to instead of so much group work do partner work; its much less stressful and students tend to be more cohesive. We recommend that although we are in the 21st century and MacBooks are very helpful, give students the option to use other resources. Our last recommendation is that when preparing for a test try not to use the exact word “test”. This word tends to be stressful and “scary” to most people and studies show when students aren’t under so much pressure they work better.

Findings and Recommendations

Extra Curricular ?⛹?

Many grade 7’s only sometimes felt involved with their peers during extracurricular sports and activities. A good thing to do might be giving students a chance to be on their friends side or team instead of purposely separating them during PE.

About sixty percent of grade 7’s said they sometimes or rarely participate in school related social events.  We feel it is important is to treat grade sevens, like grade sevens, and not grade fives.    There needs to be plan that would ease the transition from the elementary school into the high school. Part of this plan would mean that grade 7’s would have different rules, consequences and expectations.   (For example, giving grade 7’s freedom to leave dances and events without a note and phone call.)

Most students felt little anxiety when participating in sports activities, though there are some that get anxiety from these sports.  We should pay attention to those students.

Findings and Recommendations

Resources??‍⚕️

From the results of our survey it appears the majority of students know the counsellor in our school and that many students are comfortable with sharing their feelings with her. In the beginning of the year she introduced herself and said that anyone was welcomed to see her.  However, a surprising number of students said they have no idea we have mental health resources in our community. Very few students knew about our mental health resources in the area.  Our recommendation is to invite mental health care professionals to our school at the beginning of the year.  The could speak to the grade 7 students about the community resources in the area. Another recommendation we have is even set up an online hotline with people to talk to without having to be face to face. There are some existing online resources that could easily made available to students through the R.L. Angus Website or on posters in hallways.

Canada
The new Canada Suicide Prevention Service (CSPS) enables callers anywhere in Canada to access crisis support using the technology of their choice (phone, text or chat), in French or English:
Phone: toll-free 1-833-456-4566
Text: 45645
Chat: crisisservicescanada.ca

Connecteen (Youth in Alberta)
Talk on your terms. If you need support, we’re here for you. If you’re worried about someone overhearing you, or it’s too hard to say out loud, you can write it down in chat, email or text. Text 587-333-2724  (Monday to Friday, from 3pm – 10pm and Saturday and Sunday from 12pm)

YouthSpace (30 Years of Age and Under)
Youthspace.ca is made up of a community of volunteers who are here to support you – whatever you are going through.  Text 778-783-0177 (6pm – 12am PST)

Sources:

BC’s New Curriculum. The Grade Seven Physical and Health Education (PHE) Curriculum, 2018. https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/physical-health-education/7

BC’s New Curriculum. The Physical and Health Education (PHE) Curriculum: What’s New, 2018.

McCreary Centre Society. NORTHEAST  Results of the 2013 BC Adolescent Health Survey, 2014.   http://www.mcs.bc.ca/pdf/AHSV_Northeast.pdf   (pages 14-18)

Mental Wellness – Fraser Health   http://www.fraserhealth.ca/health-info/mental-health-substance-use/mental-wellness/

BC Ministry of Children and Family Development.  Dealing With Depression Antidepressant Skills for Teens  https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/health/managing-your-health/mental-health-substance-use/child-teen-mental-health/dealing_with_teen_depression_writable.pdf

Environ Health Perspective. 2007 Aug; 115(8): A404–A410. Environmental Connections: A Deeper Look into Mental Illness  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1940091/

National Institutes of Health. Your Healthiest Self: Wellness Toolkits
https://www.nih.gov/health-information/your-healthiest-self-wellness-toolkits

National Institutes of Health Supplement Series.  Information about Mental Illness and the Brain  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK20369/

 

Feedback:

Hey Mental Well-being group!

The main page and the analysis pages look great. It was encouraging to see your engagement and sustained interest in such an important topic over the course of this year. I’m really impressed with your independence in creating and administering the survey and even more so by your thoughtfulness and maturity around a delicate and at times controversial subject. Your analysis and interpretation of your survey results generated some valuable and novel information about the experiences of students at RLA. In particular, your project serves as a strong reminder to educators (including myself) that we need to listen to and learn from individual students if we want to create truly inclusive and effective learning experiences for all students.

All the best at FNSS next year,

Matt Gilbert