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Protective Behaviours

As a whole school approach we have had training with the focus of Protective Behaviours from Ann Seal. Below is a description of what the framework for protective is and some useful links for you to have a look at. If you have any questions at all please contact school to speak to Nicci Burton (Head Teacher) or Barbara Charles (Safeguarding, Pastoral and Family Link Lead).

Protective Behaviours is a framework for personal safety consisting of 2 Themes and 7 Strategies. This is very different from the ‘lock your doors’, restrictive approach to personal safety - it is a dynamic, confidence building, empowering approach that links safety with having adventures and taking risks.

It starts with a positive statement about feeling safe: the first theme of PBs is:-

‘We all have the right to feel safe all the time.’

With that right comes a responsibility not to do anything that would leave other people feeling unsafe and we can identify if we are feeling unsafe by tuning into our early warning signs, those things that happen in our body like butterflies in the stomach, wobbly knees etc. that let us know we don’t feel OK in this particular situation. And if we get those ‘Early Warning Signs’, PBs encourages us to think clearly about what our options are and work out what action we might need to take. That action might be to contact somebody on a support network, which is where Theme 2 of PBs comes in :-

‘We can talk with someone about anything, even if it feels awful or small.’

PBs encourages the development of a clear ‘support network’ which we can call upon having identified that we are feeling unsafe. On the support network we would ideally have 5 people who might be able to help us do some problem solving. They might be people who ask questions so that we can come up with our own solutions; they might be people who actually give some advice; they could be friends or family or people at the end of a help line - sometimes it’s easier to ‘phone a help line as they, and us, remain anonymous. It doesn’t necessarily have to be about something that’s really terrible; it might be that we need to mull things over, or celebrate an achievement. Having four people plus the ones at home, is suggested so that we have got a bit of variety and have back up options if our first choice of contact is unavailable.

In this way the PBs process can increase our self-confidence and empower us to develop our own thinking and problem-solving skills. In turn, this can enhance our confidence to take protective action on our own behalf and seek the help of others when we need it in order to help us feel safe again. When we are feeling safe we are more likely to feel confident, strong and empowered so we can get ‘out there’, have some adventures and live life to the full within a framework of safety.

So if we believe we have the right to feel safe and have a support network we then have the opportunity to push the boundaries and take a few risks - not restricting ourselves and staying indoors all the time, but getting out there and having some fun.

Everyone's got a bottom book written by Tess Rowley and Jodie Edwards - a resource for supporting children with naming all their body parts and keeping their body safe from their heads to their toes.

The Triune Brain (explained by children)

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'The Colour Monster' by Anna LLenas is a heartwarming children's book that takes young readers on an enchanting journey through a world of emotions. With vibrant illustrations and a gentle narrative, it helps young children understand and express their feelings while celebrating the beauty of each emotion.  By illustrating such common emotions as happiness, sadness, anger, fear, and calm, this sensitive book gently encourages young children to open up with a trusted adult.

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At Nursery we read the story to the children and we introduce the different characters from the story and we talk about the different colours and each emotion that they represent. We also do lots of different activities to help support this such as, drawing their ‘network hand’. These are 5 people who the children feel safe with and who they can talk to or go to if they need help.  We talk about how to manage their early warning signs and strategies for this. The children also have the opportunity to  draw or paint their own colour monster with the colour emotion that they are feeling at the time. The Colour Monster story taps into both socio-emotional growth and colour concepts in a simple and friendly way. This story is always very popular with the children.

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