Brilliant Buddy Boxes

kerry

We are curious souls at Schoolwell, and recently a lot of pictures of presents started to appear in our timeline. Intrigued, we investigated a little further and found that teachers are taking charge of their own wellbeing and spreading a little happiness through the #teacher5adaybuddybox scheme. Maybe you have already heard about #teacher5aday?  It is a simple idea, run by teachers on twitter to improve wellbeing.

Teachers are encouraged to take part in challenges under 5 banners –

#connect

#exercise

#notice

#learn

#volunteer

Check out Martyn Reah’s blog  for the definitive explanation of this concept.

@MrsHumanities took up the #volunteer challenge and set up the #teacher5adaybuddybox scheme, which connects volunteer teachers with each other. She says “It’s quite simple. You sign up and get matched with a wellbeing buddy, you make contact with them. Swap addresses. You send each other ‘buddy boxes’ throughout the year. They receive their ‘buddy box’. You make them smile. Easy.  The hardest part is deciding what to send.”  Read more on her blog here.

@LFPassmore, an RE teacher from Hertfordshire recommends the scheme “I found out about the buddy box scheme through Twitter. I have enjoyed putting together the buddy boxes that I have sent and seeing the response on Twitter when they have arrived. The fact that I know a bit about who I am sending it to helps me find things that I think they will enjoy. I would recommend this to other teachers as it gives a boost to the term.”

Making up the box is clearly as important a part of this as receiving it. So much fun to be had searching out fun and inspirational things to put in! Teachers are putting a lot of thought and care into putting the boxes together – look at this lovely example from  @Miss_White_Hist 

miss white

@Clare2ELT, a teacher working in Germany, has signed up for the scheme. She is really enthusiastic about the project. “I am really amazed at what a difference it makes having a buddy.  I’ve always loved giving and sending presents – for me, the reactions are reward enough, even without receiving anything back. But I’ve noticed that I have my eyes open now when I walk through town, instead of hurrying through, head own… And why? Because I’m always on the look-out for goodies to out in my buddy box to sent to my buddy! What a great feeling being able to surprise someone and make their day!” Clare blogs on wellbeing issues.

Search #teacher5adaybuddybox on twitter and check out the photos, like this beauty from @booksrokmyworld

kerry

Who would not be delighted to receive a Unicorn pen?

@MrsHumanities says “I’m truly flabbergasted at the generosity of those taking part. Not only are they spending money on their buddy but they’re spending time thinking about them, connecting with them and volunteering their time and effort on someone that (in most cases) they don’t know in person. Very generous.

The hour or so I spend on a Saturday morning matching people up is definitely worth it, especially when I see the tweets from those that have received their bit of wellbeing snail mail and are truly delighted.”

This is such a great example of how a little positivity can go a really, really long way. We love it! Over 100 people have signed up for the buddy box scheme so far. You can join them here.

Many thanks to @MrsHumanities@Clare2ELT@Miss_White_Hist, @booksrokmyworldand @LFPassmore for their help in the writing of this post and permission to use their words and pictures.

Sam Collins

Sam is a primary school teacher and founder of schoolwell.co.uk. You can find her on twitter or staffrm or send her an email.

 

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