A big welcome back to all those starting a new school year!

Well, here it is. The new term. Starting so soon after our biggest break in the year … where we saw sun, felt

freedom, participating in play and as one wag said – we were actually human beings and human doings!

I’ve already faced that initial Sunday feeling. Twice. I worked in schools in Glasgow mid-August and in

Omagh at the end of August – as both Scotland and Northern Ireland go back before us. And I am thrilled this year – cos I’ve actually managed to reframe my thinking (long may it last) and hold on to my summer resolutions. Having been a teacher since 1972 it’s engraved onto my soul to feel dread, loss and a sinking of spirits – but this time, as I already had a minor health scare late July I was so pleased to feel well that I was determined to maintain this state of positive equilibrium. It’s a little bit like cognitive behavioural therapy, you have to recognise and catch your negative thoughts and replace them with a clear mantra.

Mine was ‘I am well. I want to stay well. I am going to ‘well – come’ all the new experiences ahead’.

By repeating it endlessly it has embedded. In Glasgow it was hard work but I concentrated on how lucky I was to be able to tackle it and the privilege it is to inspire and have a laugh with goodhearted teachers and TAs. All the children in their care really need them to be on top form.

In Omagh, where I was completing a two part in-depth course with post primary, primary and early years practitioners, speech therapists, psychologists and clinicians – it was more complex – but I concentrated on the joy of being able to run the whole course in an actual circle as there were only 30 on the course (normally to save schools money I take huge numbers in rows and in this situation I can only work with the children in circles). The circle itself, with it’s clear ground rules ‘holds’ people’s hopes and fears and when people are emotionally safe they can relax, share, laugh and support each other. I well-comed what went well on their course and concentrated on promoting their well being as they would soon be giving their ‘all’ to children.  And it worked – we all had a wonderful time.

Just re-reading the above I know it sounds a bit rose-tinted – but life’s too short not to concentrate on the roses and the moments where we are mindful of all we already have. If you have been on my courses before then keep practicing those Golden Moments immediately within the school day too. If you haven’t, and can’t get to one of our workshops locally to you then I do have a little desk resource called ‘Golden Moments’. Meanwhile good luck.  Throw a blanket over any spiky comments people make to you with an internal statement “Ah, it’s just an ambush” – and then run off to have another Golden Moment.

Website Manager Notes

  1. If you need a little inspiration for your Golden Moments, do look at our resource Golden Moments desk top resource here –GOLDEN MOMENTS.
  2. We also have Golden Inspirations which you can put round the school (or home!) and you can find them here GOLDEN INSPIRATIONS.
  3. Jenny runs open courses all round the country to promote positive behaviour management, lunchtimes and playtimes and boosting social and emotional skills. To see our forthcoming list and to book places, please look here – OPEN COURSES