Positive Education

Our Vision

Park Ridge Primary School believes that all children can flourish when they are supported in their own learning, growth and wellbeing.

Positive Education

When we ask parents what they want of their children we usually get the response ‘I want them to be happy!’ At Park Ridge Primary we are committed to developing kind, grateful and positive students. Over the last few years, our school has been on a journey to embed Positive Education into the curriculum. This initiative brought together the science of Positive Psychology with best practice teaching to encourage and support individuals, our school and our community to flourish. Positive Education focuses on specific skills that assist students to strengthen their relationships, build positive emotions, promote a healthy lifestyle and enhance resilience, mindfulness and gratitude.

The Resilience Project

The Resilience Project – Hugh Van Cuylenburg & Maria Ruberto
Park Ridge Primary School participated in a whole school program which is designed to teach young people the skills that will build their resilience, in order to safeguard themselves from mental health problems. The sessions, run for teachers, students and parents, were emotionally engaging – a key to the success. Throughout the sessions students were taught to practice gratitude, empathy and mindfulness.

The Berry Street Education Model

Park Ridge Primary is currently implementing the Berry Street Education Model with Tom Brunzell. The Berry Street Education Model is a highly researched best practice approach to the teaching of Positive Education in schools in order to improve a school’s capacity to address the engagement of young people so that they can achieve their personal social potential through academic achievement. We felt this model
would help refine and strengthen our Positive Education program
at Park Ridge Primary.

The model is made up of lessons, strategies and brain breaks and is broken up into five key areas:

• Integrating body regulation into curriculum design and delivery
• Offering opportunities throughout the day for students to both co-regulate and self-regulate emotions, reactivity, and impulses
• Providing opportunities for mindful practice
• Rhythmic, predictable and consistent student routines

• Learning specific strategies to build relationships with students
• Staff/student connections built on attachment principles of unconditional positive regard
• Teaching social and emotional intelligence
• Nuturing friendship and teamwork
• Employing relational strategies to keep students on-task

• Strategies to build emotional intelligence, personal resilience, frustration tolerance and self-regulation
• Growing the stamina for attention and on-task behaviour
• Encouraging growth mindsets for academic learning and accomplishment
• Developing passion and persistence for learning

• Understanding the pathways to complete engagement through strengthening student willingness
• Addressing the fears that students bring to the classroom
• Broadening, building, and savouring positive emotions including motivation through healthy play and fun
• Curiosity and interest through real-world application, problem-solving and investigation

• Helping students articulate their own values
• Finding personal meaning in those values and extending that meaning to include others
• Understanding self and others in the context of culture and community
• Identifying personal strengths and practicing those strengths
• Exploring strengths through stories, narratives, metaphors, and heroes/paragons of particular strengths
• Understanding and employing character strengths for future pathways

We believe the Berry Street Education Model is strengthening our teaching as it focuses on educating the heart as well as the mind.


Taken from the book ‘Have You Filled A Bucket Today?’ By Carol McCloud

The book Have You Filled a Bucket Today encourages positive behaviour as children see how rewarding it is to express daily kindness and gratitude. Bucket filling and dipping are effective metaphors for understanding the effects of our actions and words on the wellbeing of others and ourselves.

Every week we award bucket winners and they are given to students who have shown kindness or gratitude. They are presented by our school captains at assembly.

Please follow the link below if you would like to read ‘Have you filled a bucket today? By Carol McCloud’