There is robust evidence showing that social and emotional learning (SEL) is foundational to well-being, leading to improved attitudes about self, others, and school, increased prosocial behaviours, improved academic performance, and serve as a protective factor against conducting and internalizing problems and subsequent problems. MHL provides the necessary foundation for mental health promotion, prevention and care and has been shown to decrease stigma and facilitate help-seeking behaviours and early identification of mental health problems. The High Five curriculum was developed, piloted, and revised over 2+ years of formative research working towards feasibility, acceptability, and sustainability of the program across diverse contexts.
High five was developed by the Child and Adolescent Mental Health working group, department of public mental health at the National Institute of Mental Health, Czech Republic. Stakeholders were involved in drafting project aims and objectives, strategic planning, implementation, piloting of the teacher training and lesson plans, and revising of the program. The curriculum and teacher training has been developed in cooperation with experts in child and adolescent mental health and further revised according to stakeholder feedback and suggestions provided by piloting teachers.
High Five was developed and intends to operate in alignment within Positive Youth Development (PYD), which supports young people in developing their full potential, and building resilience, and focusing on human strengths and potentials. The program curriculum, teacher training, and manual are developed with PYD at the core of the content – aiming to focus on the positives in both teachers and students to promote mental health and wellbeing.
This program was developed to be integrated in diverse cultural, structural, and school contexts. It is best to implement the curriculum within a subject that meets these criteria. High Five encourages and supports schools and teachers towards ensuring successful implementation by providing context specific instructions and resources to inform of the curriculum within the appropriate educational framework.