The Nurture Room is an invaluable resource at Epsom Downs Community School & Early Years Centres. It provides a welcoming, safe environment where children can explore their emotional and social wellbeing, learn about themselves, develop and grow.
Our specially trained and highly experienced ELSAs (Emotional Literacy Support Assistants) who are trained by an educational psychologist, work with individual children or small groups to address socialisation issues that are common in some primary school children. The sessions are fun and informative, using activities and resources designed to motivate, engage and support the children.
- To understand each individual child's needs
- To help each child realise their potential
- To provide strategies to help each child now and in the future
Children are referred to the Nurture Room via our triage system after discussion between our SENCo and the relevant teacher, and in some instances concerned parents.
The topics covered in support sessions include: emotional wellbeing, life skills, behaviour, anger management, learning skills, self esteem, bereavement support, friendships, bullying, cooperation, social skills, independent thinking, transition between year groups or to secondary school.
Sessions are tailored to individual needs and usually run for six weeks with the child coming for half-hour weekly sessions. The intervention may continue for longer if necessary, depending on circumstances.
At the beginning of the child's first session, the reason for their referral is explained to them and the desired outcome is discussed.
A written record is made of each session, which is largely confidential between the child and the ELSA.
Group sessions usually comprise of children from the same year group and usually run weekly in half-termly blocks. The sessions can last from 30 minutes to one hour depending on the age of the children. A structured programme is followed covering the social and emotional aspects of learning and behaviour.
Parents will be sent a letter informing them that their child has been chosen for sessions in the Nurture Room. This should not be a cause for concern as sessions often focus on learning and life skills. At the end of the programme, parents receive a letter which includes a short questionnaire to be completed. Parents may also get in touch with the ELSAs via the main school if they have any questions or concerns.
How can parents help support the Nurture programme?
- Find time to listen to your child
- Regularly have fun playing together
- Help your child to see things from another point of view
- Encourage your child to develop a positive approach
- Promote 'peaceful problem solving'
- Discuss any concerns about emotional wellbeing with your child's class teacher or the SENCo.