Children’s well-being and happiness is at the very heart of Burstow’s ethos.
Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health covers aspects of:
Work of this type in schools has shown to improve behaviour, learning, emotional literacy and mental health.
For these reasons you will find:
This is a very special room on site where children who need extra support in managing their emotional wellbeing can go to first thing in the morning to settle for the day in a calm, relaxed way. The room is full of soft furnishings and stimulating learning resources. Music and incense help children to relax and meditate. The room is also used at break and lunch times when children are finding the playground over powering.
Emotional Literacy Support Assistant
Burstow are lucky to have a few ELSA's (emotional literacy support assistants). You will be notified by the school’s SENCo should we feel your child would benefit from seeing an ELSA. Examples of work covered during their sessions are social skills, emotions, bereavement, attachment, social stories and therapeutic stories, anger management, self-esteem and friendships. In addition, targeted research based interventions such as Superflex and Lego Therapy are used to address these areas.
Every Thursday, Burstow are fortunate to have the support of a YMCA counsellor, Amanda. She is a creative arts therapist and trained counsellor. She helps children to think and talk about difficult things and big feelings and to use the arts to express them in a way that makes them a little bit easier to cope with. This is a bit trickier in these uncertain times and she always follows the school risk assessment to ensure the health and safety of all the children she sees. During these sessions, they also have fun just being together which is really important for emotional wellbeing and mental health. Ultimately, it is a safe and confidential space for children to just ‘be’.
The whole school have adopted the JIGSAW scheme of work to cover the personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) curriculum. Jigsaw, the mindful approach to PSHE, is just that: an original and comprehensive scheme of learning which integrates personal, social, health and economic education with emphasis on emotional literacy, mental health and spirtual, moral and cultural development (SMSC), especially spiritual development. Jigsaw aims to help children know and value who they really are and how they relate to other people in this ever-changing world. Classes have weekly JIGSAW lessons and each half term a new piece of the puzzle is launched in assembly.
We believe strongly in a Mindfulness based approach and so we follow the MindUp framework. Our staff have been trained by the Surrey Educational Psychology Service in order to increase their responsiveness to pupil’s needs. Mindfulness is about paying attention in a particular way – on purpose, in the present moment and without judgement (John Kabat-Zinn, 1994). It is not unusual to walk around our school and hear the sound of chimes and see teachers practising visualisation and breathing techniques with their classes.
Young carers/Well-being group
This children are invited to attend the group that runs fortnightly. The children with either have a caring role for a family member / be affected by a family member or be finding school/home life a bit tricky at the moment due to for example anxiety or bereavement. The group meets during the school day and the children access well-being activities and have opportunities to talk to staff about their worries.