2019 Wellness Day Recap

Eureka High School held it’s annual Wellness Day, Oct. 21. Students began their morning by going to an assembly where 2018 Miss Missouri, Tori Kruse, presented about the importance of mental health and ways to improve it.

“I enjoyed listening to her life story and how she started off with some major life struggles but ended up successful in the long run,” Kyli Smith (10) said. “She taught us if you keep your head up and keep moving forward, everything will be okay.” 

Later, EHS students went into their individualized breakout groups, which were chosen a week prior, to learn about ways to cope with stress and take a break from the day.

“I learned how to crochet,” Angel Payne (10) said. “It was a good way to get my mind off school and have fun with my friends.” 

Activities such as yoga and meditation were very popular, and students found that they were advantageous in helping with relaxation.

“To come in on a Monday and be able to do activities that I wanted to, especially yoga and meditation, they really helped to relax me,” Adam Carrasquilio (10) said.

A lot of people found this to be beneficial in helping with their mental health and emotional well being, which is administration’s purpose for the conference.

“I think it provided a lot of free time to calm down and prepare for the week ahead,” Miranda Olsen (11) said.

Additionally, people learned a lot of ways they can cope with their stress everyday, which will be useful in future situations.

“I learned being able to put your attention on something that’s not school, rather than just not doing nothing, is beneficial,” Malachi Brown (12) said. “Doing recreational things can destress better than resting sometimes. I was debating on skipping, but I’m glad I didn’t.”

A 2018 study by The Polaris Teen Center estimates that one in three high schoolers meet the criteria for an anxiety disorder. 

Such extreme stress levels from areas such as school, extracurricular activities, friends and parents can be detrimental to a student’s well being, both physically and mentally.  The idea of a wellness day was an attempt to combat students’ stress.

“About six years ago, the district started a push to focus on student’s social and emotional health, not just their academic well-being,” Jennifer Strauser, associate principal, said. “We saw a need where students might need to be exposed to different ways to relieve or handle stress.”  

While the idea of Wellness Day has been around for a couple of years, it is still relatively new, and the EHS staff is working to improve it for next year.  

“Were in reflecting mode on how we can make it better next year,” Strauser said.

Needless to say, many students consider Wellness Day an asset to their social and emotional health and are looking forward to next year.

“School has me stressed to an all time high,” Maddy Hollis (10) said. “It is very important to me that I take time to relieve that stress, and wellness day really helped.”