What is EARLY Minds?
EARLY Minds is a model for mental wellbeing taught in primary schools.
It introduces patterns that underpin good mental health that will help children for the rest of their lives. EARLY Minds teaches children, their teachers, support staff, parents and carers to identify their emotional needs and find healthy ways to get these needs met.
Who is it for?
- Includes the whole school community
- Not just a few children – it’s for every child in every class
- Teachers and school staff
- Parents and carers
- Inclusive and age-appropriate from Reception to Year 6
EARLY Minds enables both children and adults to learn to talk about and take care of their own mental health and to better understand how to help those around them.
What will children learn?
EARLY Minds introduces skills and knowledge that lay the foundation for life-long mental wellbeing through whole class workshop sessions.
As well as our core (age appropriate) lessons that include ‘Understanding emotional needs’, ‘How to be free from worry’ and ‘How to calm strong emotions such as anger or fear’, our focused topics also include:
- flexible thinking
- increasing focus and motivation
- building relationships
- resisting peer pressure
- preventing bullying
- coping with new situations and challenges
In our core lessons children will learn how to:
- identify and speak about their feelings
- change unhelpful thoughts into helpful ones
- practise skills to calm strong emotions helping them to become free from worry so they can relax, engage and learn. Children will learn how to 7/11 breathe as you can see below:
How is EARLY Minds delivered?
90 minute sessions are delivered by qualified trainers from Suffolk Mind who creatively engage children using developmentally-appropriate stories, exploratory questions, activities, games and movements as well as hand illustrated cards to aid many different learning styles.
Each year group lesson plan works alongside the curriculum and is linked to the Suffolk Mind Emotional Needs and Resources model.
- Age appropriate anecdotes and stories about characters in challenging situations
- Teaching made relevant by opportunity to share recent experiences (eg, Covid-19 concerns, lockdown & being back in school)
- Inclusive approach to meet children’s needs and ability
- Stories with metaphor to reinforce or lay down new learning patterns
- Kinaesthetic movements to embody concepts and learning
- Creative activities to explore and reinforce
- Rhymes to aid memory of the learning, language and model of mental health
Here’s a video you can use to explain the emotional needs and resources to children to enable them to stay mentally well.
How to book
If you’d like to inquire about a session, email [email protected] Alternatively you can give us a call on 0300 111 6000.
Sammy the Sea Squirt
Our Head of Education, Ezra Hewing has written a fun, psychologically informed storybook, showing the benefits of exercise on mental health. It’s called Sammy the Sea Squirt, and every Reception aged child (four-to-five-year-olds) in Suffolk is receiving a copy. We want to teach children at a young age how to look after their mental health, which is extremely important, especially at the moment.
Support for your secondary school
If you’re secondary school needs support, please contact us on [email protected] and we can discuss the options available to you.