STUDENT WELL-BEING IN SCHOOL: LISTENING TO STUDENT VOICES OF THEIR EMOTIONAL EXPERIENCES
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The impotance of importance of student well-being in school has been contended by studies of positive psychology in determining student outcomes. School well-being is a related construct and defined in terms of levels of school satisfaction, frequency of positive and negative affect, and useful in framing research focused on student experience. This paper reports on student emotional experiences of primary school students in Jakarta-Indonesia through two different approaches. A questionnaire identified levels of school satisfaction together with positive and negative affect in general, while focus group interviews explored specific situations in which students experience positive and negative emotions in school. Despite students generally feeling well in school, a few students indicated low levels of well-being while students who reported the highest level of satisfaction were not necessarily free from feeling bad in school –they still expressed dissatisfaction with their school experiences. Among several factors associated with student well-being in school, teacher behaviour is a crucial factor. Apart from issues arising concerning the quality of instruction, students pointed out that teacher behaviours, such as favouritism and grumpiness, are sources of negative feelings in school. In contrast, students reported that peer interactions in school are a factor that underpinned their intentions for going to school. Investigating the sources of student emotions in school through listening to their voices has provided valuable data that can assist in understanding the necessary conditions to optimise student well-being in school.