The Ideas for Action guide is meant to be a starting point, a resource to get you, other students, your teachers, and your whole school community started in planning activities in your schools. This guide provides key information about existing programs and resources, tips for getting started, things to consider, sources of support in Ontario, and activity ideas.

Feel free to change the activities to fit your school community. Each activity includes how-to instructions as well as ideas for getting more creative. Be sure to make each activity your own!

When selecting an activity, it’s important to think about whether it’s appropriate for your group. Things to consider include the age of your audience and whether you’re planning something for the whole school or a smaller group. Most of the activities in this guide can be adapted for different ages, experience levels, and group sizes.

If you’re not sure that an activity is a good fit for your school, talk to a teacher or another member of your school community about how you might change the activity to make it more appropriate or connect with your school board’s mental health leader who can provide guidance and support in this area.

Why use Ideas for Action: Mental Health?

We want you to use this guide to encourage you, the students, to start conversations about mental health in your school and community. This could look very different in different schools. And that’s okay - it’s up to you!

It’s important that your plan fit your school. Things to think about include the following:

  • Who in your school do you want to talk to? For example, do you want to communicate to all students, a specific grade, or a specific student group such as student council, a sports teams, or a club?
  • What teachers, school staff, or community members could you look to for support and partnership?
  • How many activities do you want to run? For example, do you want to run several smaller activities or one large activity?
  • When do you want to run activities? For example, do you want to connect an activity to a key date like end of school, plan a month of activities leading up to end of school, or perhaps run one activity a month for the whole year? Remember, the more you know about mental health, the better you are able to manage many aspects of daily living.