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Surviving and Thriving – For parents and carers

Mental health is on a continuum. Everyone has mental health but there are times when we are at different places on the continuum and, depending where this is, we may need more support than at other times. Being able to recognise when we, or our children, need this help is absolutely crucial.

We hope that the links on this site will aid you, as parents/carers, to support your own wellbeing and that of your children during these challenging times.

Our site is still under development but if there are areas that you would like to learn more about, then please email basecamp@ske.uk.net so we can share further resources.

Here are resources covering:

Please seek help from a professional or a support organisation if you find you are struggling.
King Edward VI Foundation Birmingham are not responsible for the content of the resources linked from these pages

Techniques to help your child

Breathing Techniques

Deep breathing with your bodyCoping skills for kids has a series of breathing exercises aimed at children, many of which may help adults too.
Grounding techniquesWorksheet from Therapist Aid describing four skills for controlling intense emotional experiences and regaining mental focus. Grounding techniques work by focusing attention on the present moment, and bringing attention back to reality.
Helping your child back to schoolInfographic from the Charlie Waller Memorial Trust
Breathing TechniquesTechniques from Mindful Healthcare:

SQUARE BREATHING

  • Start at the bottom right of the square
  • Breathe in for four counts as you trace the first side of the square
  • Hold your breath for four counts as you trace the second side of the square
  • Breathe out for four counts as you trace the third side of the square
  • Hold your breath for four counts as you trace the final side of the square
  • You just completed one deep breath!

VOLCANO BREATHS

  • Pretend your hands and arms are like lava flowing from a volcano.
  • Start with your hands in front of your heart, with palms touching.
  • Keeping your hands together, reach straight up and breathe in.
  • Separate your hands and move your arms down to your side and breathe out.

BREATHING USING YOUR IMAGINATION – COLOUR BREATHING

  • Breathe in and imagine a calm, happy, positive colour.
  • Breathe out and imagine a colour that represents stress, anxiety, etc. leaving your body.

COUNT TO 10 BREATHING

Count to 10 breathing in and out on each second.

1 = breathe in,

2 = breathe out

3 = breathe in

4 = breathe out and continue to 10……

SMELLY SOCKS BREATHING

Imagine a pair of smelly socks! Take a big sniff in of the smelly socks & then a BIG breathe out releasing all the air from your lungs.

 

Toolkits for general wellbeing

7 ways to support children and young people who are worriedAnna Freud National Centre for Children and Families guide, written by clinicians, which identifies seven ways to respond to help children and young people who may be experiencing anxiety.
Mindfulness calendar: daily five-minute activitiesA two-week calendar with daily mindfulness activity suggestions which can be done at home or in school.
Covid-19: Looking after yourself, looking after your childrenGuide from Wiltshire Council including tips for coping for long periods at home, example timetables, talking about Covid-19 and links to more resources.
Supporting young people at home: what helps young people with their mental health and wellbeing?HeadStart Heads Up Policy Briefing from the Evidence Based Practice Unit (EPBU), June 2020 explaining the social support and activities that young people find useful.
Tips for talking with young peopleMental Health First Aid England poster (linked) and animation (below)
Supporting the Wellbeing of Children and Young People in Harrow during Covid-19Signposting resources; the majority are not specific to Harrow.

1. General guidance
2. Tips for supporting children’s wellbeing, in different languages (English, Arabic, Farsi, Gujarati, Pashto, Polish, Romanian, Somali, Tamil and Urdu)
3. Talking to children and young people about Covid-19
4. Your wellbeing (links for young people)
5. Your wellbeing (links for parents and carers)
6. The wellbeing of children and young people with additional needs

You’re never too young to talk mental healthShort booklet full of tips about talking for parents and carers, from Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families.
Talking mental health with young people at secondary schoolAdvice for parents and carers from Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families about how to make conversations about your child’s feelings part of everyday conversation.
Support through COVID-19The Parents’ Guide to How to support your child’s study with school closures and exam cancellations.
Time for UsActivities to get adults and children talking about their feelings from Mental Health Foundation Scotland.
Resources and toolkits from Mentally Healthy SchoolsAnna Freud Centre Resource Library: resources to support children’s mental health related to the coronavirus pandemic.

To support you

Understanding what influences your mental health and wellbeingPDF from Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust which aims to help you to

  • note important events or relationships
  • consider what may set off difficulties
  • understand what the key mental health issues are
  • recognise your personal strengths and the support around you
  • find out what can help or hinder your day to day wellbeing
  • look at ways forward and next steps: What would help you to
  • make changes?
Working from home: Your wellbeing action planPDF workbook and video from The Charlie Waller Trust, created for use during the Covid-19 pandemic. Includes questions, tips, and things to avoid.

Inspired by Mary Ellen Copeland’s Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP); an evidence-based system used worldwide by people to manage their mental health.

Deep breathing with your bodyCoping skills for kids has a series of breathing exercises aimed at children, many of which may help adults too.
Grounding techniquesWorksheet from Therapist Aid describing four skills for controlling intense emotional experiences and regaining mental focus. Grounding techniques work by focusing attention on the present moment, and bringing attention back to reality.
Recognising and responding to anxietySummary of things to look out for and ways of responding, two-page PDF from Trauma Informed Schools UK.
Can your food change your mood?BBC Two examine the scientific links between food and wellbeing.
Self-care tips to help protect against stressPoster from Mental Health First Aid England.
Compassion and compassion fatigueCompassion fatigue occurs when we are overwhelmed by the job of caring for others. UCA suggest some strategies to help.