Day of Wellness allows underclassmen time to de-stress

Many advisories decided to play games on the Great Lawn during their Day of Wellness time.

Tesa Stark

Many advisories decided to play games on the Great Lawn during their Day of Wellness time.

Noura Jabir, Staff Writer

During Day of Wellness, students stepped out of their comfort zones and took part in everything from competitive spikeball to instructor-led yoga to hot-potato with water balloons.

Day of Wellness began last year along with the new schedule in an school effort to decrease student stress. On Sept 28, freshmen and sophomores were allowed free dress and participated in a relaxing activity for forty minutes during advisory and tutorial time.

Advisories picked their activity from a provided list of suggestions. Some advisories headed out to the Great Lawn to play frisbee, while others stayed indoors, snacking and watching Netflix.

“The lessons to me have always been interesting, and the options have always been fun,” advisor Barbara DiPaolo said about the Day of Wellness agenda. DiPaolo added that she appreciates advisors being given the choice to choose the activities which would most benefit their students.

Advisors and students alike saw the benefits in instituting such a day.

“Managing stress is a very important life skill, whether you’re in kindergarten, an adult in your career, or in school,” said Tesa Stark, Director of Clinical Services and advisor.

Stark says that Day of Wellness is a good step in improving student health because it brings a new awareness to the issue.

“Wellness has always been at the top of the list to take care of each student and faculty as a whole, and our new change in schedule has finally allowed us to work this into our day,” Stark said.

Freshmen and sophomores appreciated the reduced stress of their day.

“[Yoga] was a nice quiet atmosphere, and it was a moment to not think about anything but your breathing,” freshman Reese Ramirez said about her advisory activity.

Ramirez says that she is not surprised that the school is dedicating time to relaxation, especially considering the school’s reputation as academically rigorous. She appreciated the consideration, especially during her first year at SJS.

“It’s a really nice mental health break to get away from the stress of St. John’s,” sophomore Lindsay Gobillot said.

Many students enjoyed the Day of Wellness activities. Some even hope to see it become a full-day event next year.

“I don’t think Day of Wellness [should be] a 40-minute time slot because we still had homework, tests and quizzes, so it wasn’t necessarily the most stress relief,” Ramirez said.

Juniors and seniors will have their Day of Wellness on October 10. According to Stark, they will take part in activities similar to those the freshman and sophomores participated in.