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New resource supports teaching students about mental health

Those teaching school students about resilience, mental health, interpersonal skills, and wellbeing will welcome a new resource from NZCER Press.

Mental health education and hauora: Teaching interpersonal skills, resilience, and wellbeing was funded by the Beeby Fellowship, a joint initiative by the New Zealand Council for Educational Research (NZCER) and the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO.

Lead authors Dr Katie Fitzpatrick and Kat Wells were co-recipients of the 2016 Beeby Fellowship (now called the Beeby Award).

‘Health education in schools has often focussed on community health issues, such as alcohol and drug use, but the New Zealand Curriculum actually encourages engaging young people in the study of health,’ Dr Fitzpatrick said.

‘This resource supports teachers to plan and deliver lessons that will help students develop knowledge about their identity and wellbeing, their relationships and communication, about social issues and social justice, and about health promotion and action,’ Dr Fitzpatrick said.

Dr Fitzpatrick is an Associate Professor in health and physical education in the Faculty of Education and Social Work at the University of Auckland. Ms Wells is the head of Faculty of Health and Physical Education at Lynfield College in Auckland.

The pair worked with other experts to produce a comprehensive and practical resource for teachers who deliver health education within the New Zealand Curriculum. The complete writing team included Drs Melinda Webber, Gillian Tasker, and Rachel Riedel.

The resource will be launched in Wellington this afternoon.

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