K-12 Lesson Plans to Recognize
World Mental Health Day

World Mental Health Day is observed on October 10 every year, with the
overall objective of raising awareness of mental health issues around the
globe. The World Federation for Mental Health (WFMH) is focusing its entire
2018 campaign on “Young People and Mental Health in a Changing World”.

The WFMH recognizes that children face serious struggles worldwide,
including human rights violations, wars, natural disasters and epidemics.
Even in the best of circumstances, childhood and adolescence can be a
difficult time period because of stressors at home and in school, and in
developing meaningful relationships. This is compounded by the expanding
use of online technologies which can add additional pressures. In some
cases, if not recognized and managed, feelings associated with these
stressors can lead to mental health problems.

Worldwide, young children and teens need more information and awareness
about mental health if they are to grow to be healthy and resilient.
Building life skills in children and adolescents, and providing them with
psychosocial support in schools and other community settings can help
promote good mental health across the globe.

World Mental Health Day 2018 is a great opportunity to share lesson plans
with a global mental health perspective. The School Mental Health Training
and Resource Center at the Mental Health Association in New York State,
Inc. (MHANYS) has developed four lesson plans for different grade levels
and disciplines that teachers might consider using in class.

To download, visit www.mentalhealthEDnys.org
Teachers and administrators may also be interested in reviewing the WFMH
resources assembled for this year at wfmh.global

Among other things, these include:

– A testimonial by an adolescent who designed a free lunch planning app
called Sit With Us that helps kids find safe places to sit at lunch. The
app has over 100,000 users worldwide (page 7-8)

– An article on how to respond to school violence and bullying, along with
a tips sheet for students about preventing and responding to cyberbullying
(pages 9-13)

– An article for administrators about how they should respond to mental
health concerns following a man-made or natural disaster (pages 18-22)

– An article about stigma and the NYS mental health law written by MHANYS

The School Mental Health Resource and Training Center is a project of
Mental Health Association in New York State, Inc. with funding from the New
York State Legislature and Executive.