5 ways to help your child improve their character, confidence and wellbeing 

Pupils at Huddersfield Grammar School in Yorkshire playing and having fun in the playground.

Building a child's confidence and wellbeing creates the foundations for a brighter, more successful future. - Credit: Andrew Tivers

We all want the best for our children, and in a competitive, fast-paced world, you may be left wondering how you can help them cultivate a happy, successful future. 

We sat down with deputy head of Huddersfield Grammar School, Angela Fitzpatrick, who shared her advice on character building, mental wellbeing and the importance of developing well-rounded children. 

Below, she shares five things you can do to help your child improve their confidence:

1. Build transferable skills 

When children leave school, they should be equipped with the skills they need to be the best version of themselves. It’s common for young people to experience anxiety over the uncertainty of their future, and this can ultimately affect their confidence and belief in their own abilities.

Pupil smiling at Huddersfield Grammar School in Yorkshire.

The school is a part of 'Global Be Well Day', where schools across the world come together to promote mental wellbeing, teach children coping mechanisms and emphasise the importance of supporting their peers. - Credit: Andrew Tivers

Today’s working world is a challenging one, and it’s crucial to develop a child’s character through teaching transferable skills that will help them to thrive in the future and beyond the classroom. 

Huddersfield Grammar School have six core, character-based qualities, which they call the Huddersfield Grammar School Identity (HGS Identity): 

  • Resilience 
  • Self-awareness 
  • Self-belief 
  • Inspired learner 
  • Inclusivity 
  • Individuality 

By regularly discussing these characteristics with children, they will naturally begin applying them in everyday life. Nurturing children to become well-rounded, multi-faceted individuals is the key to improving their confidence and will help to uplift and celebrate their progress.

Every half-term we organise activities that focus on different characteristics and allow students to build their transferable skills. For example, local park-runs and escape rooms can be used to teach mental and physical resilience. We also host guest speakers who run workshops on recognising and developing different strengths.

Pupil enjoying a creative activity that builds on their transferable skills at Huddersfield Grammar School in Yorkshire.

Huddersfield Grammar promotes individuality and self-expression through integrated curriculum activities that build their strengths, allowing pupils to reach their full potential. - Credit: Andrew Tivers

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2. Celebrate strengths and progress  

Recognising when children have succeeded or demonstrated progress is vital to improving their overall wellbeing and confidence, both in and outside of school. Parents and teachers should actively acknowledge and reward their children when they have done well. 

At Huddersfield Grammar, we offer the opportunity to receive merits when a child has demonstrated any of our six identity skills, and send postcards home to acknowledge their progress. We also organise celebration assemblies and have identity award ceremonies three times a year to recognise their achievements. 

We’ve recently introduced wellbeing journals to raise the profile of character development, promoting an acknowledgement of each child’s individual strengths and skills. This allows them to take ownership of their own progress, where they can achieve accreditation by developing different characteristics and identity traits. 

We encourage pupils to make use of their journals outside of school; this will develop their understanding of how to implement their skills into everyday life and promote themselves in the future.

Student and teacher discussing mental health to promote a positive wellbeing at Huddersfield Grammar School in Yorkshire

The wellbeing of both students and teachers is a priority at Huddersfield Grammar, where mental health is regularly discussed to encourage an openness and honesty amongst the school community. - Credit: Andrew Tivers

3. Discuss mental health openly and honestly  

Encouraging openness about how we feel and sharing coping methods is crucial for establishing an awareness and acceptance of mental health. The goal is to prevent children suppressing their emotions by initiating healthy, honest conversations. 

Huddersfield Grammar is part of an international network of schools that celebrate and participate in ‘Global Be Well Day’. We follow a ‘be well’ charter, with activities that focus on positive mental health, as well as connecting with others. 

The primary school has wellbeing ambassadors who work with parents to maintain a supportive community for students. The senior school has an online wellbeing hub, where parents can check in on their children, and there are wellbeing champions who drive forward initiatives to increase mental health awareness. 

Pupils running in a physical education lesson to promote mental wellbeing at Huddersfield Grammar School in Yorkshire

Physical health is an important part of a child's happiness and wellbeing. Huddersfield Grammar educate their pupils on the importance of sleep, nutrition and exercise in maintaining a happy, healthy lifestyle. - Credit: Andrew Tivers

4. Focus on physical health 

There are a number of physical contributors that can have a significant impact on our mental wellbeing. These include: sleep, nutrition and physical activity.  

Children should understand the impact of these factors on how we think, react and feel on a day-to-day basis. Neglecting physical health can have a detrimental effect on mental wellbeing and their ability to perform to their highest standard and reach their full potential.

5. Get involved in supporting the community 

Supporting the local area and making a difference to those in need will help to promote team-building skills and encourage children to interact with the community. At the school, we arrange for pupils to write letters to the people in the area and organises charity events. Last Christmas, the children put together ‘winter warmer’ packages to support the local homeless foundation. 

Young people can find it difficult to understand their place and the place of others in the world – these projects give purpose and meaning to their character. It encourages them to consider others, and have an awareness of the difference they can make in the future.

For more information on the Huddersfield Grammar School ‘Identity’, visit huddersfield-grammar.co.uk/about-us/hgs-identity/. For information on admissions, visit huddersfield-grammar.co.uk/admissions-fees/admissions-procedure/

To contact the school, email admin@huddersfield-grammar.co.uk or phone 01484 424549.