Simon Benn from Jack Cherry Ltd suggests there are essentially three ways to improve your pupils’ SATs results
- Improve their ability – the one everyone concentrates on with practice tests etc.
- Increase their confidence – the one that the majority of teachers work on.
- Improve your own mindset, resilience, confidence etc. – the one most teachers neglect despite its critical importance. Because pupils are like sponges, they suck up all the stuff going on around them. They copy how you are and what you do, not what you say. They have internal lie detectors so they know if you’re stressed even if you say you aren’t.
There’s a physical as well as an emotional and mental side to stress. Set yourself up for success by staying calm, focussed and relaxed through the physical stress-busters that appeal to you from this list:
- Go for a run, for a swim or just dance around your kitchen in-between marking!
- Enjoy a treat to keep you going through SATs, you deserve it.
- How much caffeine do you drink? We know it’s appealing but too much after lunch could stop you sleeping.
- Stay hydrated. Use a water bottle to keep track of what you’re drinking. Aim for 2 litres a day.
- A 10 minute brisk walk can help clear the head and boost endorphins – could you fit this into your day?
- To relax instantly, breathe in for 7 and out for 11, the longer outbreath puts your body into rest mode.
- Break times are short but try to stop and enjoy your food. If will help you digest and relax.
- Find a colleague who deserves a hug – hugging releases feel good hormones, we need them right now!
- What are you dancing to? Music helps us to relax and de-stress, it lowers heart rate and BP.
- Eat a banana for snack time and potatoes for lunch! Potassium lowers BP and relaxes you.
- Take your own advice! We tell pupils to do their best and relax but often berate ourselves.
- How are you making your classroom relaxed and fun? Helping kids de-stress will help you too!
- Don’t forget to laugh! Laughing releases happy hormones so when all else fails – find the funny side!
- Did you know stretching releases dopamine? Stand up, lift your arms above your head and de-stress.
- The news can be very negative, especially towards education. If it is stressing you out, turn it off.
- Do you have a pet? Stroking an animal is calming. If you haven’t got one, borrow one (but ask first, lol).
- Are you making time for a bubble bath tonight? If not, why not? You deserve it!
Find out more about Jack Cherry’s Remarkable Recipe for SATs Success
Simon will be presenting his Recipe for SATs Success at Hales Valley Teaching School, Halesowen on 4th April. The course includes a valuable resource to stop worry, nerves and stress harming pupils’ performance in Year 6 and the SATs.