PSHE at White Court School
Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) at White Court School is an important and necessary part of children’s education. Our PSHE provision is designed to equip children with a sound understanding of risk and with the knowledge and skills to make safe and informed decisions. Our PSHE curriculum builds on the statutory elements of the National Curriculum: Sex education, drugs and alcohol, financial education and the importance of physical activity and diet for a healthy lifestyle. We intend for our children to be taught in a safe atmosphere where they can express their feelings and explore sensitive issues. Children will develop the skills to empathise with others and develop their own identity, values and beliefs.
Personal, Social and Health Education at White Court is taught using a mindful approach through the Jigsaw scheme of work. This embraces emotional literacy, social skills and spiritual development. Children have one lesson per week through varied teaching strategies and differentiated approaches to suit all children. This is a whole school approach with all year groups working on the same theme (puzzle) at the same time. This is launched by an introductory assembly, generating a whole school focus for adults and children alike. We are also using the REST (resilience and engagement scale tool) materials to enhance children’s resilience, which enhances their ability to learn equipping them for life. Emotional resilience can be taught, practised and developed through a series of lessons and activities. This tool provides the school with an effective screening and measurement tool to determine children’s level of resilience and emotional well-being and offering interventions to develop the 10 resilience building descriptors.
The mindfulness aspect to the curriculum helps address the emotional health and behaviour issues which often can create barriers to learning. Children will become aware of their thoughts and feelings as they arise and will be able to focus their mind on what they chose to focus on. Mindful children can more readily choose their responses to situations rather than react while caught up in the thought-flows and emotions, saving behaviour issues from happening, helping concentration and lessening stress and anxiety.
The Jigsaw Programme
This is made up of six puzzle pieces which correspond to units of work.
Autumn Term 1 Being me covers a wide range of topics, including a sense of belonging, welcoming others and being part of a school community, a wider community, and a global community; it also looks at children’s rights and responsibilities, working and socialising with others, and pupil voice.
Autumn Term 2 Celebrating difference focuses on similarities and differences and teaches about diversity, such as disability, racism, power, friendships, and conflict; children learn to accept everyone’s right to ‘difference’, and most year groups explore the concept of ‘normal’; bullying – what it is and what it isn’t, including cyber and homophobic bullying – is an important aspect of this Puzzle.
Spring Term 1 Dreams and Goals aims to help children think about their hopes and dreams, their goals for success, what personal strengths are, and how to overcome challenges, via team work skills and tasks. There is also a focus on enterprise and fundraising. Children learn about experiencing and managing feelings of pride, ambition, disappointment, success; and they get to share their aspirations, the dreams and goals of others in different cultures/countries, and their dreams for the world.
Spring Term 2 Healthy Me covers two main areas of health: Emotional health (relaxation, being safe, friendships, mental health skills, body image, relationships with food, managing stress) and Physical health (eating a balanced diet, physical activity, rest and relaxation, keeping clean, drugs and alcohol, being safe, first aid) in order for children to learn that health is a very broad topic.
Summer Term 1 Relationships has a wide focus, looking at diverse topics such as families, friendships, pets and animals, and love and loss. A vital part of this Puzzle is about safeguarding and keeping children safe; this links to cyber safety and social networking, as well as attraction and assertiveness; children learn how to deal with conflict, their own strengths and self-esteem. They have the chance to explore roles and responsibilities in families, and look at stereotypes. All Jigsaw lessons are delivered in an age- and stage-appropriate way so that they meet children’s needs.
Summer Term 2 Changing me
Each Puzzle has six Pieces (lessons) which work towards an ‘end product’, for example, The School Learning Charter or The Garden of Dreams and Goals. The whole school works on the same Puzzle at the same time, meaning that each Puzzle can be launched with a whole-school assembly and learning can be celebrated by the whole school in a meaningful way.
Statutory Sex Education
The Jigsaw programme provides a comprehensive PSHE Programme which covers all the requirements of the government guidance and outcomes, and more. The Relationships and Healthy Me Puzzles (units) cover most of the aspects in the guidance but these are enhanced, revisited and foundations built throughout the Jigsaw Programme.
Jigsaw’s philosophy starts by building positive self-image, a sense of identity and a healthy relationship with self, and from that starting point helps children grow healthy relationships with others.
Health Education in Jigsaw embraces not only physical health but has a strong focus on mental health and emotional literacy throughout, and empowers children to be aware of their own thoughts and feelings and know how to manage and regulate these (e.g. using Calm Me (mindfulness techniques). Jigsaw values every child and so takes inclusively as a given, promoting acceptance of individuals for who they are and who they will become.
Our philosophy is to grow resilience and positive self-esteem and confidence in children, so they can recognise when they feel uncomfortable in a situation and know who to trust and how to speak up for help. They respect themselves and their bodies and know what healthy relationships feel like. We take children’s safety and well-being very seriously, trying to empower them to speak up and get help if needed and to know how to keep themselves safe.
The Learning Environment
Jigsaw aims to meet children’s needs in this ever-changing world and does not skirt around the most sensitive issues like bereavement and family change.
Therefore, establishing a safe, open and positive learning environment based on trusting relationships between all members of the class, adults and children alike, is vital.
To enable this, it is important that ‘ground rules’ are agreed and owned at the beginning of the year and are reinforced in every Piece - by using The Jigsaw Charter. The first lesson plans of the Being Me in My World Puzzle enable this.
PSHE will be recorded through floor books or Topic books, many of the lessons will be through discussions and group activities. All classes will contributing towards the whole school display situated in the main hall. Staff will evaluate the children's contributions through using the Jigsaw 'I can' statements. Children will be involved in self and peer assessments in each session.
The Jigsaw Charter
• We take turns to speak
• We use kind and positive words
• We listen to each other
• We have the right to pass
• We only use names when giving compliments or when being positive
• We respect each other’s privacy (confidentiality)
The behaviours of the Jigsaw Charter will be reflected in the whole school Learning Charter developed in Being Me in My World and will permeate the school community.
Below you will find videos, stories, activity ideas and resources covering these topics:
- Celebrating Differences
- Belly hike
- Everyday heroes
- Being thankful
- Reflective thoughts
You got a friend in me by Miss Parish and Miss Lomas
Friend art work
Differences and respect
The Koala Who Could
The Koala Who Could
Ways to help cope with change
Poem about Change
Mindfulness is taking notice of how your body feels and what you see, smell and taste. When you notice what is happening around you, you focus more deeply. It can help you calm down when you are sad, angry or frustrated. Mindfulness helps you deal with tough emotions and can make you happy and feel good. It creates space between the emotions we have and then actions we use to respond to them.
Have a look at the videos and mindfulness activities below which you can try with your child.
Mindfulness kitchen roll colouring
Mental Health Awareness Week (18-24th May)
They have decided that the focus will be on the power of kindness. Kindness strengthens relationships and develops our community.
What is Kindness?
5, 4, 3, 2, 1 Grounding
Grounding is a skill that can help us deal with unwanted emotions and thoughts. Grounding helps bring our mind and body to the present moment. It helps you focus on the here and now by using your five sense, distracting your mind and redirecting your thoughts.
It is so simple and can be done at any time any where. All you need to do is ask your child to name:
- 5 things they can see
- 4 things that you can feel/touch right now
- 3 things you can hear
- 2 things that you can smell now (or name 2 smells you like)
- 1 thing you can taste (you could replace this with tell me 1 good thing about yourself)
Watch the video and then give it a go.
5 4 3 2 1 Grounding
By taking time to focus on a smaller patch of life and give it our fill attention we are being mindful and respectful. This helps calm our nervous system, our brains and help us feel happier.
Watch the video and then give it a go.
When you feel you have looked at everything within reach, gently turn yourself around and do the same exercise again. Did you find more there than the first time? What was different? Or maybe it was just the same.
How many Superheroes can you think of?
What are their superpowers?
Do you have to have super powers and wear a costume to be a hero?
We can all be heroes in our own special way because we are ‘Everyday heroes.’
We do things every day to help and look after people and our environment.
Just because we don’t wear capes and special costumes doesn’t mean we are not ‘super.’
We are ‘Everyday heroes’ because……….
We aim to set a good example for others.
We treat others with respect.
We try to always be positive and smile.
We do our best to get along with everyone.
We say nice things to others.
We share what we have to bring happiness to others.
We are responsible for our rubbish and look after the environment.
We are kind and patient.
We help people in need.
We make sure that no-one is left out.
We encourage others who are feeling down.
We treat others how we’d like to be treated.
We say ‘thank you’ to others who help us.
We show gratitude for what we have.
We help each other learn.
What is your Everyday power? Write it on a piece of A4 paper, make it big, bold and colourful.
Ask an adult to talk a photo of you holding your power and send it to
What would happen if we didn’t use our everyday hero powers?
What would the world be like then?
White Court Staff giving thanks
Think of three people you would like to write a thank you letter to. Who are they and what would you say? Write those letters and make someone’s day!
Can you name three things that you are grateful for or three things that made you smile today?
Why is it so easy to forget the many things we are grateful for when we discover something new?
How can we remind ourselves to be satisfied with the good things already in our lives?