What is a Mental Health Questionnaire?
As the name might be giving it away, a Mental Health Questionnaire is a tool that can help with monitoring the Mental well-being of someone. Mental Health check-in questions are often used by counsellors, teachers, mental health representatives and such, to determine whether a person might be struggling in any area of their lives.
The Importance of a Mental Health Check-in
The importance of Mental Check-ins lies in the fact that they can prevent and solve well-being problems that people might be dealing with. Not everyone has a therapist to talk to or parents that have time to listen – and thus anyone who has access to mental check-in resources should feel responsible for checking in with their peers, students, and family regularly.
The benefits of performing Mental Check-ins are pretty obvious. By conducting a mental check-in on our students, for example, we are first of all putting them in touch with their inner selves, giving them a chance to open up, helping them release pressure and making them feel heard. They can also be an effective relationship-building tool to get to know students.
10 Fun Mental Health Check-In Questions
If you are a teacher, parent, or even student looking to keep a tab on someone else’s mental well-being, here are 10 questions that can help you in your quest:
What’s the best thing that happened to you this week? What about the worst?
Checking in on the best vs. worst things that happened to someone might give them a chance to open up about certain events. These can be events that they are happy about, for example, a chance to get some validation for an achievement. Or they can be not-so-good events, like failing a class or having someone in our family get sick.
In the past week, how often have you felt: sad, angry, happy, joyful, proud, etc.?
Identifying patterns or lasting feelings can be a very good insight into the general well-being of someone. There are apps that can help us track our emotions (follow along, we will talk about those as well later on) or even something as simple as journaling can help us get an idea of the general state we’ve been having lately.
How have you been sleeping lately? How have you been eating?
In our article about Exam Stress, we talked about the fact that burnout and stress can be easily identified based on some common well-being factors like sleep quality or eating habits. By following these simple aspects, we can observe whether or not someone is affected by a constant state of anxiety, stress, or so on.
What got in the way of your learning today?
If we are stressed or struggling with something, our attention or undivided focus will not be at its maximum potential. This check-in question can help us establish if there is anything our students are struggling with on a personal level, that might be a blocker in their learning process.
What are you looking forward to today/this week?
By looking forward to something, we are talking about a person’s goals – be those personal, professional or academic goals. If a person has no goal, that is fine – we all have periods where we just sort of drift by and let life happen. But if this is a general thing that might be a bit concerning.
For us to be enjoying life to the fullest, we should always have something to look forward to. A thing that sparks our ambition to live and makes us want to wake up every day.
What’s taking up most of your headspace right now?
By asking this question, we can find out what is the main preoccupation of the student at that moment. And if we are in a position to offer any sort of help, we should do so. This does not have to be a negative thing – we can very well be taking up headspace with positive things that we’d love to share with someone.
What have you been doing for exercise?
Taking care of our physical health goes hand in hand with taking care of our mental well-being – we already learned this in the previous blog posts. If we are trying to get an idea of the lifestyle of a student, we can start with this question. If we notice that physical activity is lacking in their lifestyle, we should always encourage them to try and be more active.
What are you grateful for right now?
Often lots of day-to-day issues or small inconveniences get in our way of seeing the beautiful part of life. However, if we are to hear others (who might even be less fortunate than us) being grateful for the things we take for granted, it can act like a wake-up call and have a positive impact on the way we perceive life.
Do you have a way of coping with feelings of stress or anxiety?
This is a very good question to ask if we want to learn more about our students’ coping mechanisms and the way they handle stress. Not everyone has the same options available when it comes to blowing off steam and we need to make sure that our students turn to healthy coping habits.
Do you have someone to turn to when you’re feeling down?
If we want to be there for the most vulnerable people in our lives and classroom we should make sure that they always have someone to rely on. It is very important for people who are feeling down or overwhelmed to know that they are not alone and that they always have someone to turn to for support.
Types of Mental Health Assessments
Apart from the Mental Health check-in Questions, there are other types of Mental Health assessments that can help us monitor the mental well-being of our students. Here are some of them:
Emotional Well-being Questionnaire
Emotional well-being questionnaires offer us a valuable opportunity to gain insights into our emotional state and overall well-being. By answering thought-provoking questions, we can develop a deeper understanding of our emotions. We can also identify areas of strength, and uncover potential areas for growth.
Psychological Well-being Questionnaire
These questionnaires aim to provide a comprehensive assessment of our psychological well-being. It explores vital aspects such as resilience, self-esteem, relationships, and overall life satisfaction.
Social Wellbeing Questionnaire
The Social Wellbeing Questionnaires are dynamic instruments designed to reveal the complexity of our social connections and interactions. They offer a comprehensive assessment of our social well-being by exploring various dimensions such as relationships, support networks, sense of belonging, and community engagement.
Tools for Mental Health Check-ins
For the smooth management and safekeeping of our students’ recurring mental health check-ins, there are lots of useful tools that can make life easier. Such tools can be:
Mental Check-in Charts
These are charts that measure the Mental well-being of students and can be easily made as a DIY project. When using the check-in chart, students are encouraged to grab a Post-it, write their name on the back and place it next to the statement that best matches their feelings for the day.
Some examples of Mood options can be: “I’m great”, “I’m okay,” or “I’m meh,”. Or “I’m struggling,” “I’m having a hard time and wouldn’t mind a check-in” or “I’m in a really dark place.”
Google Forms can easily take the place of a DIY Mental Check-in Chart in a digitalized world. By creating a simple Google Form that asks the same question as the Mental Health Check-in Chart, we can get the same results. This might even work great for hybrid or online schools. Google Forms can also be customized to include multiple questions & resources for the students to go through.
There are also apps that can help us monitor and record the feelings of our students. One of these Apps is “How We Feel”, for example.
The way it works is that you sign up, and you automatically get a reminder each day to add the way you feel at that moment. The app usually asks you twice a day how you feel, and you can register friends and track emotions together. The app also offers resources like podcasts and videos about emotional well-being.
What are some other apps that you know can help track emotions?
How do you address mental health in the classroom?
We can address mental health in the classroom in multiple ways. One of the easiest ways to keep track of students’ mental health is to regularly check-in on their mental health.
Why is mental health screening important in schools?
Mental Health screening is important in schools as students should always feel safe to ask for help. By conducting mental health screenings in schools, teachers are actually encouraging open discussions about well-being, and getting students used to the idea of tracking their emotions and asking for help when needed.
How do you measure a person’s well-being?
You can measure a person’s well-being by using Mental Health check-in questionnaires, Google Forms, Apps that track emotions, or by conducting class discussions or closed group talks.
What is social and emotional well-being?
Social and emotional well-being are part of our whole well-being as a person. Social well-being represents our social connections and interactions – like relationships, support networks, sense of belonging, and community engagement. Emotional well-being, on the other hand, offers us insights into our emotional state and overall well-being.