Welcome to The Sleep Connection.
Improving the Sleep Health of your school is the simplest way to improve your school’s overall health, resilience and performance
Over 30% of primary school children and 70% of teenagers are sleep deprived. In fact as a group Australian adolescents rank as the third most sleep deprived in the world.
Focusing on sleep health in schools is vital as we become increasingly aware of the relationship between sleep deprivation and poor academic outcomes, psychological problems, reduced school attendance and increases in risk-taking behaviours.
Good quality sleep helps:
- Optimise learning, memory and concentration
- Support our emotional health and wellbeing
- Promote positive behaviour and decision making
- Improve energy levels and promotes healthy growth, metabolism and immune system
Read below to learn more on the effects of sleep deprivation in the school environment and the options to empower you to play a role in helping students improve their sleep health.
Sleep for Children and Teenagers
Click here to read more about:
- Why sleep is important
- Amount of sleep required
- Signs you may be sleep deprived
- Effects of Insufficient Sleep
- Sleep thieves- causes of insufficient sleep
- Common Sleep problems
To learn more about the options for improving the sleep health of your school, see below.
Whole School Approach
- “Sleep to be a Smarter Happier Healthier you” program for students, teachers and parents.
Invite The Sleep Connection in to your school community to implement the “Sleep to be a Smarter Happier Healthier you” program.
The program can be tailored to all age groups. From a preventative perspective, the most effective age groups are Stage 3 Primary School and Year 7 & 8 Secondary School.
The Aims of the program include:
- Create awareness of the current level of sleep deprivation among students and the effect this is having on all aspects of their lives
- Empower participants with the knowledge, practical strategies and tools to make informed decisions regarding their sleep health.
- Deliver information on pathways to treatment for those who require professional help.
For a program overview including options for teachers and parents visit – Program Overview.
- 8 Steps to becoming a Sleep Smart School – coming soon
Teachers & Student Welfare
Solutions you can implement now
1. Identify sleepy children in the school environment.
Key red flags include:
- Tired body language
- Behaviour: Younger children can exhibit symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), becoming excitable, hyperactive, disagreeable and engaging in extreme behaviours like tantrums or aggression
- Difficulties concentrating, poor short term memory, declining grades
- Moody and stressed
- Late for school
For other signs see “Signs that children are tired”
2. Create a culture of sleep awareness.
Talk to parents and students. Ask them:
- About the amount of sleep the student is getting. Parents often underestimate this. Ask for sleep time/ awake time and if the student has long sleep-ins on the weekend.
- If the student has difficulty waking up and getting going in the morning
Encourage parents and students to:
Staff Ongoing Education: Woolcock Institute
Adolescent Sleep Health Seminar for Educators-coming early 2016
This comprehensive half day sleep education seminar is presented by Adolescent & Paediatric Sleep Physician, Dr Chris Seton and Adolescent & Paediatric Sleep Psychologist Dr Amanda Gamble from the Woolcock Institute.
This seminar will teach you all you need to know about adolescent sleep, and empower educationalists & parents to help students optimise their sleep. It will outline how to detect problems, implement practical assistance to your sleepy students, along with information on detailed treatment pathways for those students who require professional help.
Further details on the seminar outline and professional development points will be posted in the very near future.