How are you? The little question that started the whole YouHue journey in 2016, has never been more relevant. Many emotions have been logged since then by students all over the world and here at YouHue, we are happy to be a part of improving wellbeing in education.
How are you?
As adults, how many times have we answered ‘Fine, thanks’ when asked how we are? Perhaps today, you have already asked someone how they are, or answered that you are doing ‘good’. Although is good the honest answer or an automatic response? Do we really want to divulge our internal feelings to a passing colleague, and do we want to hear honest answers? We may not always want to disclose our feelings, but it is important to reflect on why this could be.
Children learn to quieten certain moods and feelings from a young age too. We have all seen little toddlers screaming in the supermarket — expressively making their feelings known! But as children grow, they can begin to conform to typical social norms and to expectations set out by adults. Without being taught explicitly about the importance of understanding our feelings and emotions, children can internalise and stifle certain feelings and emotions, sometimes to their detriment. Others may not be so comfortable outwardly vocalising how they feel — and that is ok too. However, there must then be another opportunity in place. Being a young person has many pathways to navigate, and one of them should be learning about their feelings and emotions and how to express them in a way that feels safe.
Emotional literacy is essential for young people in today’s world, especially during the current recovery phase after the global pandemic, and it is our job as educators, parents and carers, to give students as many opportunities as possible to express how they feel. Supporting children to check in with themselves and really notice how they are feeling helps them make sense of situations as well as understand how they experience the world. Giving them a safe space to do this is imperative, whether it be at home, in the classroom or via YouHue.
Very often, when asked how they are feeling, young children can say either ‘happy’ or ‘sad’; developing emotional literacy helps them articulate themselves with more depth and explain their inner landscape in more detail.
Where does YouHue come in?
Here at YouHue, we give the children nine moods to choose from on the log screen when they sign into the app. Our emoji faces are simple and accessible for all ages. Our exciting new updates enable the students to click on a further mood within the feeling they have chosen. For example, when a student chooses ‘happy’ — they can then decide to share a further element of happiness they are experiencing, from ‘joyful’, ‘proud’ or ‘confident’. Students can also log which area they are experiencing this mood in, such as family, friends, health, school or other. Our new features give the children more opportunities to share in more depth — so we can celebrate with them or support them should they need it.
The celebrations and support start within the YouHue app. Now, educators can send a response to the student; each log sent to the adult has the option of three responses to choose from. There is also space to write a response of your choice. With this new feature, students know you are there and aware of how they feel before you arrange a time to have a conversation together at a time that suits the educator and student alike.
Our Insights tab on the dashboard has a variety of ways for you to monitor the day-to-day moods of the students. You can click on one specific mood to see how many students have expressed that specific mood, or you can spot any arising trends. Keeping note of when you ask the students to log can also be particularly helpful with getting a feel for the general mood at particular times, for example, before assessments or after a PE lesson. Not only will you be able to analyse your own class data, YouHue has your back too; when specific flagged words or phrases from our flagged library are logged by the students, you will receive an automatic email bringing the particular log to your attention, even if you haven’t checked your dashboard. Exported reports of overall data can be invaluable for parent teacher meetings when discussing the social emotional health of the students and as part of data triangulation when educators are working alongside school inclusion and safeguarding teams.
We are really delighted to have so many schools asking ‘How are you?’ through YouHue and we look forward to many more of you signing up with us. Some schools have very kindly offered to share their experiences — which we can then share with you through forthcoming blogs and articles.
Future case studies will give us huge insights into the plethora of ways YouHue can support the measurement, tracking and emotional literacy of students in schools all over the world. These shared experiences will deepen our understanding of the emotional nuances experienced by children. When we are continuously improving opportunities for flourishing — what better way to start than ask ‘How are you?’ with YouHue.