Introduction to Skills for Life

Littletown’s Emotional Support Programme: Skills for Life

Over a lifetime, we develop our ability to understand and manage our emotions, through every meaningful relationship and experience. In dealing with challenges such as moving home or school; falling out with friends or family; feeling ill, or facing loss, change or bereavement; our behaviour will usually change in the short term, which is to be expected. However, if it becomes difficult to manage behaviour over the longer term, then a bit of extra support might help.

We strongly believe in helping children develop good emotional and social skills. Educating our children, staff and families about emotional development helps us to create the caring, supportive school community we all enjoy. No one can be expected to teach, care, or learn well, if they are experiencing emotional difficulty. We want to work closely with families, because we know that each child’s ability to learn is based on the support that each parent and carer provides.

Therefore, working together, we aim to identify what a child’s emotional needs might be, share simple strategies for support, and track your child’s progress over time. We use a simple checklist to help clarify what level of need a child is experiencing, by observing their behaviours over time. This is best completed by both the staff and family, to give as clear a picture of a child’s needs as possible.

Possible approaches might include: checking in with the child daily with a smile; spending a bit of time each day sharing simple, everyday activities, such as cooking; reading a story together, or playing simple games, in school and at home. The basic aim is to help your child to feel secure, build confidence, think about feelings, actions and consequences, and explore their world safely.

There are different levels within our Skills for Life Strategy. You will see that there are descriptions of the roles of the child at different stages and how adults support a child’s emotional development. Linked to each stage, there are different levels of support. Active family involvement is vital at each stage. If, over time, your child needs further help to make progress, we can develop a Behaviour Care Plan together, or we can refer to child development courses or other professionals, when helpful.