Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Positive Psychology in Schools

There's increasing coverage in the UK media of the so-called "Happiness Lessons" which are finding their way into the school curriculum, not all of it helpful in explaining how the application of Positive Psychology can be beneficial in schools.

This article from the Scunthorpe Telegraph describes a Centre for Applied Positive Psychology project called Celebrating Strengths which is taking the latest research on how people flourish and applying it to learning. What is particularly interesting about this project is that teachers are being trained first, so that they can use the new 'positive teaching' techniques with their pupils year after year.

This is also a crucial change management principle, i.e. ensuring that those people who are responsible for making the new approach work on the coal-face are involved and engaged in the project right from the start. Just think about the problems Jamie Oliver had introducing healthy food into UK schools, because he didn't get the school dinner ladies on board first.

Contrary to what it says in this article, however, there is plenty of other work going on in the UK in positive psychology (and using strengths in particular) in education, the private sector and not-for-profit, and this will increase as people see the tangible benefits it can bring to their organisations.


Thanks to my UEL MAPP colleague Viv Thackray for this article

2 comments:

Sherri Fisher said...

Hi--

For more information on how Positive Psychology is being used in schools read this excellent article by John Yeager, Ed.D.

http://pos-psych.com/news/john-yeager/20071010436

This approach has also focused on training teachers in PP techniques and is integrated into the academic, athletic, arts, residential and wellness aspects of the school.

For more information on bringing Positive Psychology to schools, see www.flourishingschools.com.

Bridget said...

Thanks for this information Sherri, I'll pass it on to my MAPP colleagues who are currently working on projects with Wellington College in Berkshire and The Chalfonts Community College in Buckinghamshire.