I hope that ‘back to school’ has gone well for you all after the Christmas break.
Like you I’m sure, I find myself sitting with fingers crossed and bated breath hoping that the peak of the Omicron variant is finally over and that a full return to normal is indeed imminent. It has been a long haul, for each of us as individuals but in particular for all of you as teachers. I’ve said it before but I am nonetheless going to say it again – you have been amazing and you have our overwhelming respect and appreciation for all that you have done!
In light of what I have just said, the focus of our work at Making Me this year is to do what we can to support you in school as you seek to support the children in your care.
We are hearing from many of you that children are really starting to show signs of the impact of the pandemic, particularly in terms of their emotional resilience and overall emotional maturity.
Given this, we would like to offer you the opportunity to re-visit our core Emotional Literacy Programme. In practice, this means the following:
Please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like any or all of the above.
Also, don’t forget that all our resources are available on this website and can be downloaded for free using your school login details. These include lots of additional resources you can print off to use in the classroom to help embed the concept of resilience, as well as updated Feelings Flowers (or Feelings (Head) Phones for the older children), age specific versions of the KIPSY stories as well as video recordings of all the KIPSY stories read by some fabulous young 6th formers from local schools.
Children’s Mental health Week: 7-13 February
The theme of Children’s Mental Health Week this year is ‘Growing Together”. To this end, we have developed a package of resources for KS1 and KS2 children that you can download and use to structure any work that you may wish to do within your school during this week. Not surprisingly KIPSY and KIPSY’s garden feature strongly and we would love to see as many different wall displays using our resources as possible. If you send us through your photos and indicate whether or not we have your permission to use them, we would love to post as many works of art as possible on our social media sites.
In the meantime, please access our Children’s Mental Health Week resources (all free to our lovely schools) by entering your login and password via the ‘Login to Resources for Making Me Schools’ tab; please contact us if you have any questions.
A few final thoughts
Some of you may be aware that, sadly, I had to have my beloved dog, Hattie, put down a couple of weeks ago. She had been our family pet (and I’m not ashamed to admit, my fourth baby) for almost 10 years and her illness and death were very sudden. Losing Hattie was a shock, and her loss has left a big hole in my family. Part of the process for me has been allowing myself the space to feel the pain and sadness that I felt immediately after her death (and continue to feel at times). My team at Making Me have been fabulous and without a moment’s hesitation they immediately rallied round to allow me a few days to ‘not be available’ and really grieve. Their ongoing support and understanding has been tremendous; it has allowed me to wobble when I have needed to but also to get back up and dust myself down when I have felt strong enough to do so.
The experience of losing my dog has highlighted a few truths for me:
As I said at the beginning of this Newsletter, responding to the COVID pandemic has been a mountain that each of us has had to climb. As we (hopefully) near the summit, some of you may be feeling that your legs are weary and your resources almost completely diminished. I hope that, should the need arise, you will feel able to admit your moments of vulnerability and, in so doing, you will know the strength and beauty of community and friendship.
With our very best wishes,
Liz and the Making Me Team