The movement of Positive Psychology has been growing in response to the need of shifting our thinking from how people survive to how they can truly flourish in life. Positive Education has been growing in its development and application in schools, which provide the key environments to educate the whole child. Specifically, Positive Education seeks to combine principles of Positive Psychology with best-practice teaching (with educational paradigms) to promote optimal development and flourishing (positive mental health) in the school setting (Norrish, Williams, O’Connon & Robinson, 2013). Teaching wellbeing to students so they can flourish in life has a direct impact on academic success and needs to be the focus of every educator whose role is instrumental in helping each student grow and develop.

Wellbeing is based on the science of Positive Education

  • Positive Education seeks to combine principles of Positive Psychology with best-practice teaching and with educational paradigms to promote optimal development and flourishing (positive mental health) in the school setting (Norrish, Williams, O’Connon & Robinson, 2013).
  • Student wellbeing is central to learning and has a direct impact on academic performance (Durlak, Weissberg, Dymnicki, Taylor, and Schellinger, 2011).
  • Skills and mindsets that promote positive emotions, positive relationships, resilience and character strengths can be explicitly taught and assessed by schools (Green, Odes and Robinson, 2011).
  • A core proponent of all conceptualisations of 21st century schooling is the need for education to develop the ‘whole student’ through social, emotional, moral and intellectual development (Cain& Carnellor, 2008; McCombs, 2004; Noddings, 1995; Palmer, 2003).
  • Schools play an increasing important role in assisting youth to develop cognitive, social and emotional skills (Waters, 2011).
  • Optimal wellbeing is a multi-dimensional and holistic concept, and included both hedonic (e.g., positive emotions and emotional stability) and eudaimonic (e.g., self-esteem, growth, meaning) components (Norrish, Williams, O’Connon & Robinson, 2013)