The emotional health and wellbeing of all members of Kirklevington Primary School, including staff, children and their families, is extremely important to us. Our school values the importance of caring for each other and providing emotional support when it is needed. We recognise mental health and emotional wellbeing is just as important as our physical health.
We encourage all members of our school community, staff and children to be respectful and kind and to appreciate that each individual and contribution is valued. We recognise that everyone experiences life challenges that can make us vulnerable and at times, anyone may need additional emotional support. We aim to ensure that everybody is supported to reach their potential or has access to help when they need it.
In order to place Emotional Wellbeing at the heart of everything we do, we:
- Ensure Emotional Well-being is effectively taught across the school so children can successfully navigate their emotions and have the tools to be resilient, especially through times of challenge and change.
- Make Emotional Well-being an established and essential part of the PSHE and the wider curriculum. We ensure that key messages about Emotional Well-being are also reinforced through dedicated weeks, assemblies, homework and on the school website.
- Ensure a culture of acceptance around Emotional Well-being, so children, staff and parents have the space and confidence to freely discuss problems, concerns and worries.
- Ensure clear and consistent procedures are in place so that issues arising regarding Emotional Well-being are dealt with quickly and effectively.
- Ensure staff are adequately trained to feel confident identifying pupil needs and initiating early intervention strategies
Staff Well-being is fundamental to the successful running of the school. It is imperative staffing needs are considered, listened to and made a priority. We will ensure that:
- Staff feel appreciated, respected and valued.
- Emotional Well-being is high priority and regularly reviewed and monitored.
- Staff feel they have the support, tools and resilience to deal with stressful situations and times.
- The school culture surrounding Emotional Well-being is one of acceptance so that staff feel they have avenues of support when they are in need of help through peer support, SLT support and counselling programmes, if required.
- Staff have a clear framework of support in place when dealing with difficult situations involving pupils.
- Staff are made aware of the Emotional Well-being support that is available to them.
- The work life balance is a priority and that pressures placed on staff are continually monitored, evaluated and minimalised.
- There are spaces within the school for staff to talk and take ‘protected’ breaks (away from duties and looking after pupils) in a comfortable environment.
We take a whole school approach to promoting positive Emotional Well-being, aiming to help children become more resilient, happier and lead more fulfilling lives and to work in a pro-active way to avoid problems arising.
We do this by:
- Creating and applying consistent ethos, policies and behaviours that support positive Emotional Well-being and resilience, which everyone understands.
- Adhering to the Zones of regulation therapeutic approach to behaviour management.
- Having time to talk, encouraging all children to talk about things that are on their mind.
- Encouraging children to report worries or concerns.
- Helping children to develop social relationships, support each other and seek help when they need it.
- Promoting self-esteem and ensuring children understand their importance in the World.
- Helping children to be resilient learners, take risks and to manage setbacks.
- Teaching children social and emotional skills.
- Identifying children who have Emotional Well-being challenges and planning support to meet their needs, including working with specialist services and working in specialist groups, such as Lego Talk Therapy.
- Supporting and training staff to develop their skills and knowledge and their own resilience.
- Developing an open culture where it’s normal to talk about Emotional Well-being.
Through our curriculum…
- We identify and talk about feelings.
- We learn about how feelings effect behaviours.
- We teach children strategies to manage feelings and maintain a positive mental health.
- We learn about the link between mental and physical health.
- We learn about the importance of talking.
- We manage transition to secondary school.
- We aim to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health and wellbeing.
We promote a mentally healthy environment through:
- Promoting our school values and encouraging a sense of belonging.
- Promoting pupil voice and opportunities to participate in decision-making.
- Celebrating academic and non-academic achievements.
- Providing opportunities to develop a sense of worth through taking responsibility for themselves and others.
- Providing opportunities to reflect.
- Enabling access to appropriate support.
Small group activities:
- Lego Talk Therapy groups to focus on resilience, working together, talking and listening.
- Open culture, where children, staff and parents/carers can drop in and see a designated adult if they are anxious or worried about a certain situation/issue.
Parents and carers concerns.
Parents or carers should approach their child’s class teacher if they have any Emotional Well-being concerns. This will be cascaded to the PSHE Leader, Mrs Pattison who can support teachers in identifying strategies to support parents and children. In addition to offering support within school, we may also discuss with you additional support mechanisms available to you from the following agencies:
- Early Help
- CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service)
- Play Therapists
- Specific agency support such as bereavement services or domestic violence services
- Educational psychologist
Online resources to support Mental Health and Wellbeing can be found on the following websites.
- NSPCC – Recognising the signs that a child may be struggling with their mental health and wellbeing can be really hard. NSPCC have got advice to help you support your child who may be experiencing depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts or self-harm. https://www.nspcc.org.uk/keeping-children-safe/childrens-mental-health/
- CAMHS – A really helpful website which includes, downloadable self-help activities, information guides, information and more. https://www.camhs-resources.co.uk
- YoungMinds – This website offers advice for you to help your children and a free telephone service. Call the Parents Helpline: 0808 802 5544 (Monday to Friday 9.30am – 4pm, free for mobiles and landlines). https://youngminds.org.uk/resources/
- Anna Freud – This charity is dedicated to providing training and support for child mental health services. https://www.annafreud.org/
- Public Health England and the NHS – Offer advice on how to take simple steps to look after their mental health, improve their mental wellbeing and support others. https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/
- Mind – This is a charity which offers advice and support, especially around the ‘5 ways to wellbeing.’ https://www.mind.org.uk/workplace/mental-health-at-work/taking-care-of-yourself/five-ways-to-wellbeing/
- The Samaritans – This charity offers confidential support for people with feelings of distress. https://www.samaritans.org
- The Great Dream – Ten Keys to Happier Living – Is a movement of people from all over the world taking action to build a happier and more caring society. Through extensive research, the charity have identified 10 Keys to Happier Living that consistently tend to make life happier and more fulfilling. Together they spell: “GREAT DREAM”. https://actionforhappiness.org/10-keys
- Winston’s Wish – The leading childhood bereavement charity in the UK, offering practical support and guidance to bereaved children and their families and professionals. https://www.winstonswish.org/
- Harbour – This charity provides assistance to families and individuals affected by domestic abuse. https://www.myharbour.org.uk/
Supporting your child during the coronavirus outbreak
- Public Health England – Guidance for Parents and Carers on Supporting Young People’s Mental Health and Wellbeing during Covid-19. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-supporting-children-and-young-peoples-mental-health-and-wellbeing
- Young Minds – Covid-19 and Mental Health. https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/looking-after-yourself/coronavirus-and-mental-health/
- ‘Many ways to share a hug’ – Social Story. https://www.childhood.org.au/app/uploads/2020/04/hug_HR.pdf
- Ten tips for talking to your child. https://youngminds.org.uk/blog/talking-to-your-child-about-coronavirus/#ten-tips-from-our-parents-helpline
- How to tell children and young people that someone is seriously ill. https://www.winstonswish.org/telling-children-young-people-serious-illness
- A lovely, printable 14 day mindfulness activity challenge. https://www.elsa-support.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Coronavirus-home-challenge.pdf
- A coronavirus story. https://www.elsa-support.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Coronavirus-story-for-children-1.pdf
- Dr Chris and Dr X are here to tell you why the coronavirus might not be as scary as it sounds. https://www.bbc.co.uk/newsround/51342366
Calming Activities, Mindfulness, Breathing, Yoga Videos and More…
- GoNoodle – This site has hundreds of ‘braincercise’, dancing, strength and mindfulness videos – as well as videos for fun! https://app.gonoodle.com
- Childline Calm-Zone. https://www.childline.org.uk/toolbox/calm-zone
- Cosmic Yoga – https://www.youtube.com/user/CosmicKidsYoga
- An activity for grounding and calming. https://kristinamarcelli.wordpress.com/2015/07/14/hold-a-sense-of-inner-peace-with-you-wherever-you-go/
- Just Breathe – A video aimed at children to help them feel calmer. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RVA2N6tX2cg
- 150 Sensory Learning Ideas. https://inclusiveteach.com/2020/03/20/150-sensory-learning-ideas
- ‘100 positive things every kid needs to hear’. https://raising-independent-kids.com/100-positive-things-every-kid-needs-hear
Apps for Wellbeing and Mental Health
- A list of apps complied by Dorset Young Minds. http://dorsetmindyourhead.co.uk/minding-my-head/apps-for-wellbeing-and-mental-health
- Smiling Mind App – A great app with age specific mindfulness resources, including a new resource, ‘Thrive Inside’. Thrive Inside is a special program to help you stay psychologically healthy while you’re spending extended periods of time at home. https://www.smilingmind.com.au
- Cosmic Kids Yoga and Mindfulness App – This app often has a two week trial available. https://www.cosmickids.com
The discomfort you’re feeling is grief. https://hbr.org/2020/03/that-discomfort-youre-feeling-is-grief
Samaritans – If you need to talk to someone, the Samaritans can help- they offer emotional support and a listening ear 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. This is a free phone number that can even be called from a mobile that has no credit. Your call will not appear on the phone bill. Call 116 123 or email firstname.lastname@example.org (24 hours a day, 365 days a year)
Childline – Comforts, advises and protects children 24 hours a day and offers free confidential counselling. Call 0800 1111 (24 hours)
NSPCC Helpline – If you’re worried about a child, even if you’re unsure, contact our professional counsellors for help, advice and support. Call 0808 800 5000 or email email@example.com
CALM Helpline – Confidential support for men, 7 days a week, 5pm to midnight, free Call 0800 58 58 58. https://www.thecalmzone.net/
National Domestic Abuse Helpline – Free, confidential, 24 hour helpline. Call 0808 2000 247 www.nationaldahelpline.org.uk
Women’s Aid – Information and support for women experiencing domestic violence
Live Chat https://chat.womensaid.org.uk
Citizens Advice – Providing advice on issues such as debt management and welfare benefits, housing, immigration and asylum, employment, consumer complaints and landlord-tenant disputes. Due to increased demand for this service Citizens Advice advise people to use the website first. www.citizensadvice.org.uk Call – 0344 411 1444
Winston’s Wish – Supports bereaved children, young people and their families. Call 0808 802 0021 https://www.winstonswish.org
Advice for parents/carers
The government has produced a useful webpage listing sources of advice and support for keeping children safe. The guide includes information about:
- Protect children from domestic abuse
- Teenage relationship abuse
- Child sexual abuse and exploitation
- Sexual assault referral centres
- Crime, Criminal Exploitation and County Lines, violence and gangs
- Protect children from radicalisation
- Online child safety
- Mental health