We are pleased to announce that two of our lovely learning support assistants, Miss Ashby and Miss Kubicki, have successfully completed the ELSA programme and are now fully fledged ‘Emotional Literacy Support Assistants’.
This ELSA intervention was originally developed within Southampton by Educational Psychologist, Sheila Burton. It was designed to build the capacity of schools to support the emotional needs of their children from within their own resources. ELSA acknolwedges that chidlren and young people learn best when they feel happier and their emotional needs are being addressed.
ELSA intervetnions support children with a range of emotional needs:
The majority of ELSA work is delivered on an individual or group basis. Sessions are fun and use a range of activities such as: games, role play, arts and crafts. ELSA sessions take place in our very own ‘Pod’ which provides a calm, safe space for the child to feel supported and nurtured.
Whilst high quality teaching and our universal mental health and wellbeing strategy supports most chidlren, three will alwaays be children in schools facing challenges that detract their ability to engage with learning. Some will require greater support to increase their emotional literacy than others.
If your child has been identified as needing additional emotional literacy support, your child may be offered an opportunity to engage with this intervention in school. Your class teacher, Miss Ashby or Miss Kubicki will then send you a letter inviting your child to the programme. Children will usually be referred to ELSA support by their class teacher via myself as the Inclusion Lead. I will discuss the referrals with the pastoral team and identify and prioritise which children require a weekly programme. There is also a number of activities and strategies on the school website (with more to follow) where you can support your child at home to develop their emotional literacy and mirror what we are doing in school.
Please remember that ELSAs are not their to fix chidlren’s problems. They provide emotional support whilst building warm, respectful relationships with the chidlren and to provide a reflective space whereby they are able to share honestly their thoughts and feelings. Training, development and supervision of the ELSAs is an ongoing process and wisdom is required to recognise when issus are beyond the level of expertise that could reasonably be expected of an ELSA. In these cases, the ELSAs will share their assessments with the pastoral team and we will endeavour to support with referrals beyond school with the support of our Educaitonal Pyschologist.
Please continue to look at the ‘parental top tips’ for lots of support and advice covering many key areas of parental concern, and continue to check in under the ELSA section on the website for specific ELSA activities. Thank you.