Emotional Health and Wellbeing
At Otford, we are committed to supporting the emotional health and wellbeing of our pupils and staff. We know that everyone experiences life challenges that can make us vulnerable and at times, anyone may need additional emotional support. We take the view that positive mental health is important for everyone and that we all have a role to play.
At our school we:
• help children to understand their emotions and feelings better
• help children feel comfortable sharing any concerns or worries
• help children socially to form and maintain relationships
• promote self-esteem and ensure children know that they count
• encourage children to be confident and ‘dare to be different’
• help children to develop emotional resilience and to manage setbacks
We offer different levels of support:
Universal Support - To meet the needs of all our pupils through our overall ethos and our wider curriculum. We achieve this at Otford by creating an environment and school ethos where children are encouraged to talk about their thoughts, feelings, moods and emotions and by raising awareness of mental health across the school and what it means. We do this through Well-being assemblies which focus on 10 Ways to Happier Living (see link below), PHSCE sessions, Celebrating World Mental Day (10th October 2019) and raising money for Young Minds amongst other things.
Additional support - For those who may have short term needs and those who may have been made vulnerable by life experiences such as bereavement.
Targeted support - For pupils who need more differentiated support and resources or specific targeted interventions such as wellbeing groups or personal mentors.
All our teaching and support staff received Mental Health First Aid training in 2019 and we offered a workshop to parents run by Young minds which was well attended.
For more information about how to support your child’s mental health at home follow the links below:
Children's Mental Health Week
We are looking forward to celebrating Children’s Mental Health Week again this year. The theme is Growing Together.
Growing Together is about growing emotionally and finding ways to help each other grow. Challenges and setbacks can help us to grow and adapt and trying new things can help us to move beyond our comfort zone into a new realm of possibility and potential. However, emotional growth is often a gradual process that happens over time, and sometimes we might feel a bit ‘stuck’.
During the week, through assemblies, PHSE sessions and other activities, we will help children to explore what it means to grow together.
Children’s mental health is something we try to support all year round at Otford but this week provides an opportunity to shine a spotlight on children and young people's mental health and raise vital funds to ensure every child has easy access to mental health support. With this in mind, the Y6 Community Ambassadors would like to take part in the ‘Dress to Express’ day, on Wednesday 9th February, to raise money for a wider community of children, so they have the support they need.
Children (and staff) will be able to come to school use clothing and colour to express themselves, for a suggested voluntary contribution of £1 or £2 to support the amazing work of Place2Be! The Y6 Ambassadors will be putting up posters, collecting and counting the contributions and helping to promote a day where our community can come together to express themselves, whilst helping raise funds to help others. We hope that all the children look forward to getting involved and ‘Growing together.’
Thank you in advance for your support.
For more information for parents and carers:
If you are having particular struggles with your child ‘Parenting Smart’ offers parenting advice from Place2Be Child Mental Health experts, including practical tips to support children’s wellbeing and behaviour.
Children's Mental Health Week
The theme for this year’s Children’s Mental Health Week is ‘Find your Brave.’ During our Wednesday Well-being assemblies the children reflected on what bravery is, what can get in the way of being brave and how does being brave make us feel? We talked about if you have worries or are unsure about something it is brave to ask for help. There is more information for parents and carers at: