Health and Wellbeing
How to Parent Post Pandemic: navigating our own mental health as parents - Workshop Wednesday 9th February 8.00pm – 9.00pm.
Details: Join host Lorraine Candy as she discusses the mental health challenges faced by parents and how parents can support their children’s mental health whilst navigating their own at the same time. Lorraine will be joined by guests Kate Silverton, Carrie Grant MBE, Gurpreet Singh (@Sikhdad), Judah Racham (Place2Be Parenting Smart).
Audience: Parents and carers
It is Time to Talk Day on Thursday 3rd February 2022 which is run by Mind and Rethink Mental Illness, in partnership with Co-op.Time to Talk Day is the nation's biggest mental health conversation!
Pop down to the coffee morning between 10 - 11:30am for some fun activities and conversation. At My Place, 343 Dagenham park drive, Harold Hill, RM3 9EN.
This month's theme: Friendly February
We need each other more than ever right now! This month let's focus on reaching out to connect with others and doing our best to be a good friend. Our acts of kindness and connection ripple out and impact so many more people than we realise - and they also boost our own happy hormones too! In stressful times people around us may be feeling the strain, so let's try to keep calm, take time to listen and show compassion.
Action for Happiness: Friendly February, 2022
This month's theme: Happier January
ACTION FOR HAPPINESS: Happier January 2022
How can we start this new year happier? Things have certainly not been easy over the last year, and we are still in difficult and uncertain times. The best way to try to handle our difficult emotions and experiences is by focusing on what we can control. This month, we're encouraging everyone to focus on small steps to try to boost happiness - for ourselves and others around us - to spread kindness and hopefully inspire others to do the same.
A recent study commissioned by the British Toy and Hobby Association (BTHA) found many of the toys tested could choke, strangle, burn, poison and electrocute children. Out of the 255 toys that were randomly selected, inspected and tested, 88% were illegal and 48% were unsafe for a child to play with.
The toys tested were bought from a range of online sellers. Currently, there is no legal requirement for online marketplaces to check the safety of the products that other sellers are listing on their site.
The report itself includes a list of toys that researchers found were illegal or unsafe.
As we move towards the Christmas season, parents will be buying toys, and so the advice given in Appendix 8 of the report, Consumer Tips, could be especially valuable. You can find the report here: https://toysafety.co.uk/
Supporting traumatised children through the Christmas storm
For many children the second half of the autumn term is exciting as it includes many festivities and family get-togethers. Other children can find the next few months really stressful, not least autistic children or children coping with trauma.
Beacon House Therapeutic Services and Trauma Team have a special interest in repairing the effects of trauma and attachment disruption. Amongst their many resources is one with ideas for coping with Christmas: 'The Christmas Storm: Surviving & Thriving At Christmas'. Please see the images above for information or click the following link: https://beaconhouse.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/The-Christmas-Storm.pdf (This document has also been emailed to all parents / carers.)
Parenting Smart (Place2Be)
The children's mental health charity, Place2Be, has launched a new website aimed at helping parents with typical situations they can find themselves in with their children.
Advice can be found on over forty topics including:
- Understanding sibling rivalry
- My child is lying, what does it mean, what should I do?
- My child has trouble going to sleep
- My child says ‘I hate you!’
- Cultural identity: who am I?
The Parenting Smart website can found here: https://parentingsmart.place2be.org.uk/
This month's theme: Do Good December
This month, we're encouraging you to carry out small acts of kindness. This has been another difficult year of uncertainty and ups and downs for many of us. Kindness is contagious, and helping others has been proven to make us feel better too! Let's try to focus on being generous with our time and attention rather than money - it's free and better for everyone, as well as our planet!
December Kindness 2021
ANTI-BULLYING WEEK 2021 - Advance Notice:
Action for Happiness Calendar: New Ways November: This month, we're encouraging you to try something new! Learning something new or getting involved in an activity that really absorbs and interests us is great for our wellbeing. Keeping our brains active is not only good for us physically but it can help you feel you are flourishing as you see yourself make progress with a new skill, or just make you smile as you make a mess and decide to start again. :) Being playful and trying new things is important, as is remembering that it's OK not to get it right first time - change "I can't do it", into "I can't do it...yet!" This month's calendar is full of ideas to help you decide what to try next.
Advance Notice: Wear something YELLOW to school to continue our commitment to developing and nurturing positive mental health for all
Action for Happiness Calendar: Optimistic October When things are feeling a bit tough, it can help to set some goals. Making goals achievable and ensuring that you have a few short term as well as longer term, more ambitious goals helps us feel we're making progress. It doesn't matter if your goal for the day is something really small, the important thing is to give yourself the opportunity to feel like you've achieved something and to celebrate that! This month's calendar is full of ideas to help you think about how you can put this into practice.
Self Care September Green line Self-care isn't selfish, it's essential. No-one's perfect. But so often we compare our insides to other people's outsides. This month we're encouraging everyone to be kinder to themselves (as well as others), especially when things go wrong. Self-care increases our resilience and helps us get more out of life. It also helps us accept others as they are too.
Healthy and Fun activities to support physical and mental wellbeing throughout the summer:
Action for Happiness Calendar: Jump Back Up July; This month's theme is all about resilience and understanding how we can build skills that will help us to bounce back. We can't always predict or control what life throws at us, but we can build a range of skills and nurture our resources to help us respond flexibly, effectively deal with challenges, recover more quickly and even learn and grow as a result.
Action for Happiness: Joyful June - Calendar 2021
LBBD Carers' Newsletter, Spring 2021
Action for Happiness: Meaningful May, 2021
Action for Happiness Calendar, Active April 2021
Young Carers Action Day, formerly known as Young Carers Awareness Day, will be widely celebrated on Tuesday 16th March 2021.
We would love for you to get involved this year but understand how busy everyone is therefore we are doing things slightly different due to the difficult year we have all experienced.
How can you get involved and support your local Young Carers' Project?
* Tweet & Tag us on all social media platforms on Tuesday 16th March 2021 by simply sharing our Young Carers video - link below and attached poster. (Facebook: Thurrock Young Carers Twitter: BandDCarers)
* Share the attached poster with other colleagues so everyone knows about Young Carers Action Day.
* Help us reach 1,500 views on our YouTube video by taking a 5 minute break to watch it and learn a bit more about our project. ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c7QIMStRw-c&t=18s)
* Wear something Yellow on the day & take a selfie and add to Facebook or Twitter whilst tagging us. It can be as simple as some yellow socks or a hairband.
* Join us for one of our a LIVE Q&A's. ( With Charlotte & Carron - Young Carers Project Workers at 12.30pm Meeting ID: 899 0044 4397 OR at 5pm Meeting ID: 899 1741 7276 with some of our Young Carers. PASSCODE for both: YCAD2021 )
It would be great for you to let us know how you plan to get involved this year.
Please keep us updated and I look forward to hearing from you.
Young Carers Information & Support Worker
Carers of Barking and Dagenham
Registered office: 334 Heathway, Dagenham, RM10 8NJ
Please use our Online Referral Form
Like us on Facebook : Carers of Barking & Dagenham
Follow us on Twitter: BandDCarers
Company registration number: 3180671 (England and Wales) Charity registration number: 1063485
Let's take the time to pause, breathe and really take in what's all around us. This month we're encouraging you to take some time to look within. Learning to be more mindful and aware can do wonders for our well-being in all areas of life - like the way we eat, the things we notice or our relationships. It helps us get in tune with our feelings and stops us dwelling on the past or worrying about the future - so we get more out of the day-to-day. It can also help us identify what we're grateful for, which has been proven to help boost your happiness levels!
Action for Happiness Calendar: Mindful March 2021
Wholistic Mentoring Training Course and AQA accredited, for those interested in mentoring young people effectively
RAISE RESILIENCE London Parents: Helping Children Thrive Is More Important Than Ever
Raise Resilience Programme for Parents
Bounce Forward also have a Raise Resilience programme for parents. This programme helps parents support themselves and their children to build resilience within the home. Raise Resilience starts with personal resilience, helping parents learn how to look after themselves, building self-awareness about what might be getting in the way, and helping them notice what is going well and their strengths as a parent. Following each session parents are provided with downloadable materials to use at home with their children and help them structure the way they build resilience.
The programme is delivered as six 1-hour online sessions, below is an overview;
- Session 1: Introduction to resilient parenting
- Session 2: Optimism during uncertainty
- Session 3: Developing the mental muscle
- Session 4: Compassionate communication
- Session 5: Mindsets and Energy
- Session 6: Parenting to strengths
Since the start of the pandemic over 2000 parents have been reached with this programme. It has had a real significant impact and amazing feedback around how much it has helped parents in such a difficult time and certainly a time where it’s been needed more than ever.
Totally free for parents in London to register, on a first come first served basis. They have up 250 spaces on each course available. For further information please see the attached flyer.
London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, Trauma Awareness Training
Ways to help children who are struggling, through lockdown:
Action for Happiness Calendar: Friendly February 2021
Action for Happiness Calendar: Happier January 2021
Action for Happiness calendar: Kindness Calendar - December 2020
Action for Happiness Calendar, New Ways November, 2020
World Mental Health Day 2020
Source: NSPCC Learning
Date: 08 October 2020
World Mental Health Day takes place on 10 October 2020. To mark the day the NSPCC Library has created a reading list which includes resources on children and young people’s mental health.
Access the resources: World Mental Health Day 2020
See also on NSPCC Learning
> Child mental health
Action for Happiness Calendar: Optimistic October
Action for Happiness Calendar: Self-care September 2020
Wonderful Walk of Kindness in order to raise funds for the British Red Cross
Action Calendar: Altruistic August, 2020
Have loads of fun this summer in our local area with lots of sport and physical activity opportunities:
Action for Happiness: Resilience Calendar - Jump Back July, 2020
Action for Happiness Calendar: Joyful June (even in difficult times) 2020
Mental Health Awareness Week, May 2020 information from KOOTH
KOOTH 5 Steps to Wellbeing
KOOTH Parents and Carers Information
ACTION FOR HAPPINESS CALENDAR: Meaningful May, 2020
Understanding Relationships and Health Education in your child's primary school: a guide for parents
As the nation is currently coping with the stresses of the Coronavirus pandemic it is not possible or appropriate to schedule parent/carer information events regarding the statutory changes to the Relationships and Health Education curriculum (which forms part of PSHE). However, we wish to reassure all stakeholders that we will be conducting consultation events so as a school community we can agree as to how and when the content of the statutory guidance should be delivered. Also be reassured that teaching of the content of the Relationships and Health education will be reflective of the chronological and emotional age of the pupil.
Further information will be shared in due course.
Advice for Parents During Coronavirus from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH)
NSPCC suggested books for children who are worried or anxious:
The NSPCC Library and Information Service has created a reading list of books for children who are worried or anxious. I have selected a few from their list which I believe will be of great help generally, but particularly while our nation is in 'Lockdown'. Please refer to the NSPCC website for their full reading list.
Keep well and stay safe.
1. Something Bad Happened: A Kid's Guide to Coping With Events in the News, By Dawn Huebner
When children learn about something big and bad - even when they hear only bits and pieces - their brains get busy trying to make sense of it. Where did it happen? Why did it happen? And especially, will it happen again? Something Bad Happened guides children ages 6 to 12 and the adults who care about them through tough conversations about national and international tragedies. The non-specific term "bad thing" is used throughout, keeping this a flexible tool, and so children are never inadvertently exposed to events their parents have chosen not to share. Fear, sadness and uncertainty about the "bad thing" all are normalized, and immediately usable coping tools provided. For children and parents to read together, this one-of-a-kind resource by child psychologist and best-selling author Dawn Huebner provides comfort, support and next steps for children learning about troubling world events.
2. Starving the Anxiety Gremlin: a cognitive behavioural therapy workbook on anxiety management for children aged 5-9, By Kate Collins-Donnelly
Workbook for parents and practitioners to use with children aged 5 to 9. Based on cognitive behavioural principles, it uses activities to teach children how to manage their anxiety by changing how they think and act. Includes: stories, puzzles, quizzes, drawing and writing games.
3. Super coach Arty vs. the shadow: taking the fear out of failure, By Lorraine Thomas:
Presents a creative way for children to help them to manage their own worries. Includes practical guidance for parents and teachers on how to use the book and specific coaching activities. Aimed at children aged 8-12 years.
4. The Panicosaurus: managing anxiety in children including those with Asperger syndrome, By K.I. Al-Ghani
Illustrated storybook for younger children, including children with Asperger's syndrome. Uses simple storylines and the character of the Panicosaurus to explain how the brain works to produce anxiety. Shows children how they can manage and take control of their own level of anxiety.
5. What To Do When You Worry Too Much: a kid's guide to overcoming anxiety by Dawn Huebner and Bonnie Matthews
Self-help book to guide 6 - 12 year olds and their parents through the cognitive behavioural techniques most often used in the treatment of generalised anxiety. Uses metaphors and humorous illustrations to explain difficult concepts. Includes drawing and writing exercises to help children to master new skills related to reducing anxiety. Provides an introduction for parents and caregivers. Looks at what a worry is, how a worry gets started, making worries go away; spending less time on worries; talking back to worries, re-setting your system and keeping worries away.
6. Difficult Days for Dinosaur Douglas, by Heather Maisner and Alex Godwin,
Picture book featuring Dinosaur Douglas and friends, who experience stress in everyday situations and learn to deal with them. Concerns child brain development and in the impact of stress. Written in consultation with Alberta Family Wellness Initiative, NSPCC, and FrameWorks.
7. Monkey Mind and The Mountain: mindfulness for 8-80 year olds (and older). By Cheryl Rezek
Introduction to mindfulness for children including practical relaxation activities aimed at reducing stress and anxiety. Discusses why difficult feelings are experienced, the reasons for and situations when these occur and how best to respond to them. For children over 8-years-old. Can be used by parents and carers with younger children.
Action For Happiness: Active Coping Calendar for April, 2020
Children’s Commissioner’s Briefing: Health Inequalities in Childhood, March 2020
Wellbeing at Leys Primary School
At Leys Primary School, we take mental health very seriously - as seriously as physical health. Every class regularly engages in a wide range of activities that develop competencies and strategies for strong mental health through both the PSHE, and PE subject curriculum, as well as developing sensibility and empathy through our school Buddy, and Wellbeing Champions systems.
Wider school experiences, such as school trips and sporting fixtures, along with a multitude of creative opportunities such as assembly performances, class presentations, and participation in borough and national competitions, galas and festivals for poetry, writing, and singing, develop our pupils' confidence, awareness of self and empathy for others; all of which contribute to a clear awareness of their own and others' wellbeing.
As a school we are proud of our achievements in evidencing our commitment to this area of personal development through our work to achieving the accreditation of: Wellbeing Award For Schools which we secured in July,2019 (please see the accreditation logo above). Our commitment to continuing excellence in this area is unwavering.
Congratulations to our Leys Primary School Wellbeing Champions
Children: Maaz, Lacey, Priscilla, Jake, Ruby and Kaiden
Staff: Mrs Rogers, Mrs Gough, Mr Gormer, Mrs Hampson, Miss Ashby, Miss Fagan and Mr De La Cruz
Governors: Dame Anna Hassan DBE
Parents/Carers: Mrs Oluwasaseun Anintolu-Amao, Ms Sadia Shaikh, Mr Rob Lawrence and Mrs Sandra Lambert
Details of requirements of the Wellbeing Award for Schools
Promoting positive well-being and mental health for the whole school community
At Leys Primary School, we are excited to be working towards the Wellbeing Award for Schools, administered by Award Place, in partnership with the National Children’s Bureau.
We have signed up to this award to further develop our work to promote positive wellbeing and mental health for the whole school community and gain accreditation for the work we have already done. It also ties in with our school motto of Resilience to Achieve – Aspiration to Succeed, as we firmly believe that both a healthy mind and body are prerequisite to achieving the best versions of ourselves.
About the award
There are eight objectives to achieve within the Wellbeing Award Framework, containing several Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) set out within each. The award focuses on ensuring effective practice and provision is in place that promotes the emotional wellbeing and mental health of both staff and pupils. Many of these are already in place. The award will enable us to develop these practices where necessary and help us to ensure that wellbeing is rooted in the long-term culture of our school. It will help us to create an ethos where, like safeguarding, mental health is regarded as the responsibility of all.
With this award, we will demonstrate our commitment to:
- Promoting mental health as part of every day school life
- Improving the emotional wellbeing of our staff and pupils
- Ensuring mental health problems are identified early and appropriate support provided
- Offering provision and interventions that matches the needs of our pupils and staff
- Promoting the importance of mental health awareness
- Capturing the views of parents, pupils and teachers on mental health issues
There have been a number of ways in which you have contributed to helping us work towards this award:
- taking part in the well-being homework activity set over the last Christmas holiday
- by attending our popular coffee mornings
- workshops, which are sometimes run in conjunction with the Adult College.
- by participating in the parent and carer surveys - the results of which can be seen below:
Leys Primary School Emotional Health and Wellbeing Strategy Document
RESULTS: Parent Questionnaire and Parent Questionnaire Comparison Sheet
Our Links to external agencies
for further information and advice: