Mental Health - Jenby's in School
Dr Natalie Jewitt is a chartered clinical psychologist who specialises in children's emotional and mental health and a parent at our school. Working with Jenby's in Schools helps us provide a unique preventative package which allows us to better equip children throughout their primary years and beyond!
The Jenby's in Schools project is a whole school approach to promoting and improving children's emotional and mental health. We do this through whole school staff training and a bespoke curriculum which focuses on being healthy in every aspect. Children need to know that our feelings and worries are 'normal' and as a result know how to manage them. The Jenby's in Schools project creates a powerful platform for us to empower the next generation with the knowledge, understanding and tools to look after their mental health.
We benefit from continued supervision of two, fully trained group facilitators who provide the sessions to children throughout the year. There is such a buzz from the children about the sessions delivered so far which have focused on: Big Emotions and Managing Anxiety. Children have even signed themselves up to the programme because they have heard such good things.
Our aim is that every child in school will be able to access both the worry and anxiety and big emotions units during their time here, as everyone needs to learn how to look after their mental health.
Parent / Carer Online Workshops
Parent/carer involvement is crucial to the success of the Jenby's in Schools project. We have worked hard to ensure parents/carers can play an active role in their child's experience of attending a Jenby's in Schools group. A series of online parental workshops are available to access free of charge throughout the involvement in a Jenby's in Schools group. We provide a link to access these workshops.
Pre and post assessments are completed by the group facilitators for each group of children to examine the impact. In addition to this, each child is asked for their feedback as well as their parent/carer who completes a questionnaire. For the last group we ran, the results speak for themselves:
Jenby’s and Addingham Self-Regulation Chart
Emotional self-understanding and emotional self-regulation are important skills for us all to learn. Emotions can be confusing and overwhelming for many children, so it is important that we help children to understand their emotions and develop the ability to think about, monitor and control their behaviour both at school and home. The Jenby’s in schools project works on doing this through our facilitated groups, staff training and parent/career online workshops within the primary schools we are partnered with.
We believe that ALL children want to have positive relationships and interactions, it is our responsibility as the adults around them to help them to develop self-understanding and emotional self-regulations. Children do not exist in isolation they are constantly interacting with many different environments and relationships and therefore it is important for us to create opportunities to see beneath challenging behaviour and consider what this behaviour may be communicating to us. “Do they need additional support with learning” “Are they having friendship issues” is there a problem at home/after school club/at break” etc.
As part of our self evaluation we have been looking for a more compassionate behaviour system as an alternative to the traditional traffic light behaviour monitoring system. We have developed a new system that aims to come away from primarily monitoring and controlling behaviour to a system that helps pupils and teachers work together to make a more positive learning environment for all. The new system focuses on equipping children with the understanding and tools to feel more in control of their behaviour. Throughout the development of this project it has been hugely important that we are able to work together to create a behaviour policy / system that encourages a positive learning environment whereby pupils feel understood, valued and supported.
We have therefore developed the “train regulation chart” which we hope can achieve these aims. The train regulation chart is a visual system that has 4 stages: At the station; On track; Wobbling; and Off track. Under each stage there is two prompts that look at supporting pupils to identify what they feel using Jenby’s feelings flashcards and what they need (to get back on track/or stay on track). All classrooms will also have a “tools box” in their classroom to make it easy for pupils to access the tools they need.
Below is a brief summary of each stage along with some of the illustrations that will be used. The charts allow each class to work together to decide which feelings and tools should go in each stage – the 'I feel and I need' sections are attached by Velcro making them a tool that can be made bespoke for each class.
Children's Mental Health Week 2020