The Five Habits of Happiness – Start with Gratitude

How Growing With Gratitude is supporting schools across the world nurture happy, successful and authentic children.

1. An Attitude of Gratitude

Students are guided to regularly think about, discuss and record the things they are grateful for in their daily lives and environment.

2. Random Acts of Kindness

Students are guided to plan for and regularly complete small acts of kindness.

3. Positive Reflection

Students are guided to reflect on and record the things that they are grateful for and any positive experiences they have.

4. Wellbeing Warriors

Students choose to complete a minimum of 15 minutes of exercise, read five pages of a book, make healthy food choices, or complete a mindfulness activity or meditation each day.

5. Operation Home Service

Students are guided to plan ways they can regularly help out at home e.g. doing the dishes or cooking dinner.

It is an easy-to-implement way with simple, ready-made resources that teachers like you can implement immediately in the classroom and that are backed by powerful research. This program works and most daily activities are only 2-10mins long.

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Top 5 Teaching Tips I’ve Learned from Season 1

1. Be interested in your pupils and know their story.

2. It’s not just what you say but how you say it!

3. Be aware of what environment are you creating.

4. Build communities both within and outside of your school.

5. Look after yourself.


1. Even in a large class a teacher can have an incredible personal impact on their pupils. Knowing what interests each pupil has and how to relate a lesson to them in that regard can be so engaging. Your interest and direct communication will make them feel comfortable, welcome and important in your class. This confidence will shine through and even a knowing smile will boost their energy more than a 5 minute chat.

2. How you frame your lesson and create the story of what you are learning has a big impact.   This was so brilliantly illustrated by Andrea and Seth Gardner in episode 004 when they     talked about their ‘Power of Words’ viral video. Finding a way to get an emotional connection to those you are talking to is a game changer. Make it relevant to now. How does the subject make you feel, how could you use it today.

3. Be really mindful – how you are has an affect on everyone else around you.

Are you positive?

Are you excited about your day or the next lesson?

Do you share the good progress you have made?

Are people aware of the interesting hobbies or pastimes you have out of school?


Are you negative?

Can’t wait to gossip or share bad news?

Always talking about the day being nearly over?

Too much work?

Too tired?

Who would you rather be around?

If you are caught in a negative conversation how do you deal with it?

  • Shine the light on the opposing point of view
  • Walk away and don’t get involved
  • Avoid people who have a tendency to be negative.

I suggest just be more of yourself, whatever that is for you. There is nothing more powerful and engaging than someone being authentic.

Change the subject and ask questions that you think might encourage a negative person to engage differently.

As in number one it is not just pupils who want people to take an interest in them. We all do!

4. Find support in as many places as you can. I hope there are people within your school that are supportive and offer encouragement and help when you need it. But in this current world so many likeminded people can be found in online groups. You can be exposed to new ways teaching or a simple idea that changes your whole experience with a pupil.

Also remember you have valuable experience yourself. You presence in a group could be the thing that really helps someone else.

Be open and honest with people. That is true strength, not a vulnerability, as many people think.

5. Look after yourself. To be the best teacher for your class you have to be the best you.

Get the sleep you need.

Say NO to things and prioritise your time. It might give you more focus for your school related work or for something outside school. Either way balance is very important. You can’t inspire if you are dead on your feet and you certainly can’t if you are off sick.

Please share some things below that support you to be your best self.

I would love for you to leave a comment below with some groups that you recommend.

Eg On Facebook

Staffroom – resources and websites

Primary Teachers – Resources, ideas, stress relief

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A voice for education and society by Peter Cansell

At a time when education in this country is being chewed up by the machinations of the idealism of politicians, there is a need for a voice, a voice for educational reason, a voice for society, a voice for sanity.
We need to hear the views of real educators, those of us who have a grounding in giving children a chance to learn. Not just learning a very narrow spectrum of information that can be easily measured as to whether it has been remembered or not. Education is bigger than that. Not in a system that encourages schools to become silos, where reaching out to others is seen as anti competitive, but in a way that encourages the sharing of ideas and good practice, a way that allows us all to benefit from the best ideas, that encourages the development of good practice, that allows us to look at someone's innovative ideas and innovate further.
This Podcast is an opportunity to explore Education with peers and others, to look at creative ways of approaching children's learning, to learn ourselves about different ways of doing things, to see the success others have achieved and to share our ideas with others.
I know I will learn a great deal from the wisdom of colleagues who are exploring new, creative approaches and I hope to offer a view which reflects a realistic response, while always remembering that our responsibility is towards educating the children in our care.

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