How important is a teacher's wellness?


We keep talking about how important health, hygiene and overall wellness of a student is and how one must achieve it. The education system ensures that students, from a young age, are instilled with the idea of taking in proper balanced diet and having a healthy lifestyle. Hence, the students' wellness has found its way into academic textbooks and in the school’s extra curriculum.

 
But have you ever wondered about teacher’s wellness? Do teachers need a wellness program too? Will this impact the students in any manner? Will it benefit the school overall? If yes, how?
 
A teacher's wellness gets reflected on the students' wellness. Let us know how.
Teachers are likely to be the first role models any student would have. Students tend to walk on their role model’s footsteps and imitate them. Teachers, who establish a healthy work/life balance, have more energy and serve as healthy lifestyle role models for their students. Healthy children are fast learners.
 
Healthy and aware teachers promote healthy behaviours and practices among students, who then emulate these behaviours into their own lifestyle and engage in more health-promoting activities. Hence, one sees a simple two step chain with the philosophy, that whatever the teacher or role model does is easily adopted by the students.
 
Healthy employees are a crucial component of a happy and progressive school. A healthy and stress free workplace makes for satisfied and high performing employees. Such school employees are more likely to be happy in their position of work and tend to stay longer. They display good attendance records and take fewer leaves, thus providing the stability and continued development which is very essential for educational success.
 
It is very beneficial for schools to carry out workplace wellness programs that covers all school staff. By creating a culture of healthy lifestyle - from being more physically active to eating healthier foods and carrying out hygienic practices, wellness programs improve employee morale and increases an individual’s focusing ability, among many other benefits.
Regular physical activity improves brainpower. Incorporating physical activity into the classrooms not only engages students in their free time but also results in energized students who will learn better. Such students have positive attitude towards school and studies, better academic achievement and attendance.
 
Stress management is an important aspect that a workplace wellness program addresses. Schools are dominated by female teachers who have to devote time and look after students in schools and back home to their own families. Hectic lifestyles leave employees with no time to look after themselves.  Hence, wellness programs step in to address issues like lack of physical activity, stress management, etc.  The adoption of healthy behaviours results in reducing risks of life threatening diseases and their associated costs. Also, by reducing the frequency of workplace injuries and employees falling ill, worker’s compensation claims and medical costs are reduced, all thanks to the wellness programs.
 
With the ample benefits that a wellness program offers, the teachers ought to look after their wellness to become catalysts in changing schools and communities for the better. 

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