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Pilot project « Well being workshops » - School year 2010-2011


Welcome, free expression, decryption of emotions, classroom fitting-out, dialog


school project (pilot project)


Pupils of the 1st class of secondary school and their teachers


Teachers of the Lycée Dachsbeck of Brussels, Deputy Burgomaster of State Education and Youth of Brussels, Professor Isidore PELC - Faculty of Medicine of the ULB.


Belgium - Brussels




Parents, Teachers, Young People.


Teachers of the Lycée Dachsbeck of Brussels, Deputy Burgomaster of State Education and Youth of Brussels, Professor Isidore PELC - Faculty of Medicine of the ULB (Université Libre de Bruxelles) who fights for a long time for the institution of the “well being workshops” in the schools.
This initiative lies within the framework of the education and health policy led in all the schools of the city of Brussels. It has been supported by the Houtman fund (Foundation created by the ONE in 1989 in order to support actions aimed to help children with physical, psychological, and social difficulties).
The workshops are voluntarily led by teachers.
The project is framed by a Committee made of three teachers of the school, one social worker of the PMS Centre of Brussels, and Professor PELC.
The committee is in charge of organising the different trainings (analysis of the issues linked to well being and human development) intended to the voluntary teachers. These teachers constitute a network of referent teachers informed of the problems that the young teenagers are confronted to.

The aim of this experimental project is to foster the students’ and teachers’ well being and human development, in order to contribute to “Living Better Together at school”.
« The instigator, Professor PELC, answers that it is very simple. Il is not about to add courses or seminaries to the programme, but to benefit from what is done at school as place of life, keeping in mind that the child sometimes spends as much time at school than in family. At school, we can detect or identify a child who seems more violent, more disinterested or more depressed than the others.
It started at the time of the new school year 2010 and it concerns the 155 pupils of the 1st secondary class (who have just experienced an important change that can generate stress, doubt and loss of confidence) and their teachers.

Four actions have been implemented :

1. Great start of the new school year: it is about the 1st year pupils’ welcomed by a teacher acquainted to mental management, a PMS member and some voluntary rhetoricians.

Instead of the official session where the rules and the administrative speech are usually and essentially evoked, the pupils benefit from the discovery of their new environment, take part in the school rules development, learn relaxation and concentration exercises.

During the school year, the activities go on every 15 days and go together with individual interviews.

The parents have also their own “Great start of the new school year”. Regular exchanges take place between them and the teachers. Role playing games are also organised in order to underscore what the school expects of them and inversely.

During the school year, meetings take place in order to reinforce the links between the different partners without evocation of the school results.

The objectives are to have a positive contact and to establish a confidence relationship between all partners while working on concrete situations.

2. Free expression sessions are organised on different themes such as friendship, link, opening, information, meeting, authority…. in order to improve human relationships and to establish a climate of confidence within the school.

3. Decryption of emotions: the objective of this workshop is to allow everyone to determine his/her own needs, to learn to express them clearly and to implement means to answer these needs or to manage his/her frustrations.

4. School environment: in order to allow the pupils to take over their school and their learning framework, they are led to take part in their school’s fitting-out and decoration.


The expected long-term results are :

  1. The identity construction in school environment.

  2. The improvement of the school climate.

  3. The development of assertiveness among the sudents and teachers.

  4. The sudents’ motivation.

  5. The academic success.


Parent training/meetings, Classroom management, Teacher training, Duration for children (at least one academic year).


This initiative allows to act in front of the increasing complexity of the imperatives, not only the teaching imperatives but also the educative ones that in fact impose themselves at school :

  • the school population and the teenagers have changed. The mission of education is not only the acquisition of the knowledge and the social skill anymore but it also have to target education to citizenship;

  • the PMS centres note the emergence of school phobia and scapegoats within classrooms;

  • the way in which violence has become a feature of everyday life is in progress. Jostling each other, beating each other, insulting each other just for fun gradually become the standard;

  • the academic failure can induce a feeling of exclusion of some pupils. Their loss of motivation is also sometimes “contagious” and can contribute to a deterioration of the learning climate within the classroom;

  • finally, the learning framework, if not optimum, stresses disaffection, to be understood here as the decrease of the pupils’ positive investment towards the school.

In order to remedy these observations, the pedagogical team has carried out, during the school year 2009-2010, a reflexion on “living better together at school”. A pedagogical day, led by Professor PELC, has been organised in that way and several teachers have taken part in the international seminar “At the school of well being and of sustainable human development” that aims to indentify all the things that daily contribute to the pupils’ blossoming and help them to develop keys to manage and face the difficulties.

The « well being workshops » have been set up while being at it (school year 2010-2011) pages

Article from the newspaper « La Libre » on the Professor PELC’s militant activity in favour of the “well being workshops”






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