Published on: June 22, 2023
Year six pupils in West Lancashire have been given some useful strategies to help them reduce their worries and anxieties about moving to high school in September.
Supervising Practitioner, Adele Normington, said: “The aim of the workshop was to provide pupils with at least one strategy that could help them reduce their worries about going to high school.
“We used blow-up figures of aliens to think about how they would feel landing on a new and unknown planet. We then linked this to how the pupils were feeling about their transition.”
Adele engaged students in an open discussion, encouraging them to share their concerns and apprehensions about moving to a new school. They felt comfortable expressing their fears and uncertainties about starting a new school.
She talked about different changes that students may have already experienced, such as moving home, having a new sibling, losing someone they love and shared coping strategies. Pupils were reassured that they were not alone in their worries and that their peers shared similar feelings.
Adele’s top tips for changing schools
• Stay Positive: to try to look at all the good things they will get from the change, such as ‘I will be able to make lots of new friends.’
• Think about control: to ask themselves “what can I control?” If there are things they can’t control, let them go and move on.
• Look after yourself: to ensure they have time to do things they enjoy or help them relax. Hobbies are a great distraction.
• Try to keep routines: to try to carry on with routines or activities that can stay the same.
• Help others: to help their friends when they go through change or agree to support each other.
And she suggested that they visit their new school’s website, get a plan of its layout, keep a homework diary, work out the best way to get to and from school, get their school bag and clothes ready the night before.
Adele also looked at breathing strategies to help reduce worry. Adele said: “When we feel nervous, worried, or scared, we need to practice relaxing. Practising breathing techniques keeps our heart beating regularly, which stops the blood rushing round our body, which keeps our mind clear.”
Year six teacher, Loren Spencer at Cobbs Brow Primary School, Skelmersdale, commented: “The children were very engaged with the session and all took something from it.
“Adele made the session practical and had lots of resources. We will definitely book again.”