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Exeter children study the power of positive thinking

By Exeter Express and Echo  |  Posted: March 22, 2014

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CHILDREN at an Exeter academy have been learning about how to be brilliant – by learning new habits of positive thinking.

Year five and six pupils and the staff at St Michael’s Church of England Primary Academy in Heavitree have taken part in a series of The Art of Being Brilliant Workshops to learn about how positive thinking can impact on their lives.

The workshops are designed to help children think positively, be happier and transform their lives for the better and are run by the author Andy Cope and inspired by his book of the same name.

He said: “The Art of Being Brilliant is basically all the best bits from my PhD research. I’ve been studying ‘happiness’ and ‘flourishing’ (basically, I’ve been seeking out happy people and bottling their secrets) and some simple principles were crying out to be shared.”

Headteacher Gill Kendrick said: “We want happiness to be valued by the children as a life skill, so that they consider learning and achievement in a much wider context rather than just in terms of exam results.

“We’ve already noticed from the workshop, much improved attitudes of many children towards their learning and life in general. We are now working towards the ‘Being a Brilliant School Award’ as the older children run the programme out across the rest of the school.”

Year five pupil Grace said: “The art of being brilliant has changed my life for ever!” while fellow student Izzy said: “It is all about being brilliant, happy and positive. We have the opportunity to seriously change our lives for the better.”

Sarah Durkin, the Year Five teacher at St Michael’s said: “Andy’s workshops were inspirational. We have already noticed that children are looking for the more positive aspects in their lives. As a teacher, I feel that we now have a shared language of ‘positivity’ which we can use every day in the classroom.”

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