Student Wellbeing

“The best few days for art, photography and improving our mental health & wellbeing. We’ll be back!”

Sophie Bellars, Salisbury Sixth Form College

Learning Away has shown that a residential learning experience provides opportunities and benefits that cannot be achieved in any other educational context or setting.

With students effectively confined to their own neighbourhoods for the better part of 2 years the benefits of getting away, already significant, are likely to have an even greater effect post-pandemic.

In this section

Improving mental health | Sustained engagement and achievements | Blue Health

Improving mental health

(and not just for students)

The Institute of Outdoor Learning research shows that people benefit from outdoor learning in all areas of life.

  • At a global level it fosters a connection to the natural world
  • At a societal level it leads to greater engagement with the community, in this instance fellow students and teachers
  • At the interpersonal level it provides a safe and supportive setting to enhance social skills; appreciating and valuing difference
  • At the intrapersonal level it leads to a greater sense of wellbeing

St Ives offers you all those opportunities with relevant, curriculum focused activities in a variety of settings – both outdoors or in unusual and interactive indoor environments.

Sustained engagement and achievements

Residential trips offer all round development for students and staff

Learning Away studies show that there are clear signs that residential experiences promote deep engagement, including among previously disaffected students and those with challenging behaviour.

They also showed that students enjoy collaborative approaches to trip planning including problem solving and ‘learning through doing’. Students found huge satisfaction in different ways of experiencing success; whether it was through finding their way to a new place by map reading, participating in a workshop or assisting a fellow student or teacher.

It’s not just about the student either. Learning Away studies found that the staff experience was just as important – leading to clear professional development, confidence and improved relationships with students.


Blue Health

Linking blue spaces to mental wellbeing

Blue Health is a pan-European research initiative that investigated the links between urban blue spaces, climate and health.

They found that access to beaches delivered better social cohesion and wellbeing. They also found that those who don’t have access to blue spaces still benefited from virtual coastal walks… so just imagine the benefits of a real one!

Blue Health found that in Europe, the health of the poorest in society benefit most from being near water, especially where blue spaces provide accessible opportunities for physical activity.

St Ives combines the best of learning with the best of health benefits, access to great and experienced educators and unique environments as well as all round access to blue spaces outside of formal learning times.