Boarding and Day · Co-ed College Prep · Grades 6–12 & Postgraduate · Hebron, Maine

Prioritizing Fun for Student Well-Being to Mitigate Pandemic Stress

Prioritizing Fun for Student Well-Being to Mitigate Pandemic Stress

Hebron has successfully been weathering the storm that is the global pandemic by staying up to speed with latest recommendations to mitigate the deterioration of youth mental health that is attributed to increased stress and social isolation from COVID and public health protocols. The following recent study from 2/2021 documents that over 70% of youth have experienced set-backs in at least one area of their mental health due to the pandemic. The recommendations in this study support Hebron's approach to place student well-being and fun social connection on the forefront of all of our programming.  To fight back against social isolation we have embraced a variety of exciting outdoor programming such as dog-sledding, ski-jouring, nordic and alpine skiing,  ice climbing, snow sculpture, horseback riding, canoeing, fishing, disc-golf, and much more spring fun to come!  We are celebrating community service week, giving back to others less fortunate, practicing gratitude exercises, and sharing mindfulness moments as a community,  As an interdisciplinary team, we have put the well-being of students first and embraced a body, mind, and spirit approach to supporting the whole student within our learning community.  We have ignited new passions, prioritized fun and connection, honored important milestones in creative ways, and facilitated students finding a greater sense of their purpose as they learn tools to face adversity and build resilience. By thinking outside of the academic box, we have creatively nurtured a positive shift in our collective identity.  We are grateful for our health, for a safe school, and for the opportunity to provide both in-person and remote learning that is balanced with fun extracurricular opportunities.  As we forge new ways to meet our students' needs for personal enrichment and social connection,  we are witnessing our students transforming from victims of COVID to resourceful thriving students. Student leaders have emerged and they are embracing a higher consciousness that comes from staying connected and supportive of one another.  Through this shared challenging experience, we are proud of how we protect student mental health and wellness by promoting character growth while prioritizing joy! 

Amanda Miller
Director of Mental Health and Wellness