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Loss and bereavement Empower Plus PowerPoint Presentation

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On : Jan 08, 2015

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  • Slide 1 - Loss and separation An Introduction for schools Empower Plus
  • Slide 2 - Why consider loss? It affects children’s learning Behaviour Friendships Children will respond in different ways to loss depending on their past experiences and their current situation
  • Slide 3 - Excluded children Many children excluded from school have experienced a significant family bereavement. Family breakdown Many changes of school
  • Slide 4 - Some statistics 92% of young people in the UK will experience a significant bereavement before the age of 16 and 4-7% will lose a parent through death. (Ribbens, McCarthy & Jessop 2005) 54% of young offenders have experienced a significant bereavement in the 2 years before their offence. (Excellence & Enjoyment 2005)
  • Slide 5 - More statistics Approximately 1 in 3 marriages ends in divorce. 1 in 4 young people report physical violence between those caring for them.(Cawson 2002) 920,000 children live with parental alcohol misuse (Bancroft & Wilson 2004) About 150,000 children experience imprisonment of a parent each year. (Social Exclusion Unit Report 2002)
  • Slide 6 - Role of schools We are a universal service that can recognise and respond to loss and its effects. We are in partnership with other services and are in an ideal position to: ‘lay down the foundations for later success, not just in education, but in supporting the welfare of the whole child’ DfES 2004 Every Child Matters agenda
  • Slide 7 - What losses do children experience? TASK Spend a few minutes with your partner or in a small group and jot down any losses that you think children experience. Feedback to whole group
  • Slide 8 - What is loss? Loss is losing someone or something that was loved or important to the individual. Loss can be of: Relationships – people or pets Secure familiar environment Objects that give comfort or have significant connections Self – image e.g. Aspirations, status, credibility Skills or abilities
  • Slide 9 - Losses / obvious or not? Parents divorcing Moving country, house, home or school Changing teachers /TA Parent/carer in the armed forces Being held back a year in school Personal or family health changes Being a young carer Being hospitalised Not being chosen Death of a close person
  • Slide 10 - More losses? Loss of friendships Living with an alcoholic parent Change of family financial situation Friends or relatives moving away Death of a pet Long term illness of someone close Abuse Being laughed at Changing class/tutor group Being excluded from school
  • Slide 11 - Reactions to loss These reactions may manifest themselves: Physically – preoccupation, headaches, lack of sleep, slowing of reactions, accident prone Behaviourally – aggression or being very quiet and withdrawn, thumb sucking, bed wetting Emotionally – mood swings, anger, sadness, anxiety
  • Slide 12 - Winston’s Wish Schools Information Pack (1) This valuable pack contains information on how children react to loss according to their age. Under the section ‘What are they feeling?’ you can see the reactions for children under 2 years old, 2-5 years, 6-9 years, 9-13 years and adolescents.
  • Slide 13 - Winston’s Wish School’s Information Pack The pack also contains: Aids for speaking with a pupil about death and specifically death in their family. Learning ideas for the classroom with national Curriculum references. Assembly and whole school communication ideas. Ideas for memorial activities.
  • Slide 14 - Effects on learning Intrusive thoughts Preoccupation Feeling angry Feelings of helplessness Sleep disturbance Questions: What might we see? How would this affect classroom performance? What could we do?
  • Slide 15 - Effects on social interaction Intolerance Feelings of difference or isolation Feeling ashamed or embarrassed Detachment from reality Aggression or defiance Questions: What might we see? How would this affect classroom performance? What could we do?
  • Slide 16 - Two DVD examples Teenage Grief created by Leeds Animation Workshop. You’ll always remember them even when you’re old (Child Bereavement Network)
  • Slide 17 - What can we do to help? Prepare ourselves now for what we may have to do at some time in the future. Ensure we have contact points and materials for when our help is needed. When our help is needed try the following: Acknowledge the child’s bereavement ‘ I was sorry to hear about .............
  • Slide 18 - More helpful strategies Maintain normal structures and routines, but temper expectations with kindness and understanding. If necessary provide alternative practical activities. Create opportunities for the child to talk if they wish, but do not press them to talk. Ensure you have the facts about the situation so you can speak factually to the child.
  • Slide 19 - To be avoided Don’t use platitudes, such as ‘You’ll soon get over it.’ Don’t say ‘I know exactly how you feel.’ Don’t minimise the loss. Don’t dwell on the event. Don’t talk about the child with other adults in the room, as if they weren’t there.
  • Slide 20 - The needs of bereaved teenagers William Worden (1996) Adequate information Fears and anxieties addressed Reassurance they are not to blame Careful listening and watching Validation of Individuals’ feelings Help with overwhelming feelings Involvement and inclusion Continued routine activities Modelled grief behaviours Opportunities to remember
  • Slide 21 - Parents splitting up www.itsnotyourfault.org is a wonderful website for children and young people. It acknowledges children’s feelings, provides practical advice, helps children to realise they are not alone and makes it abundantly clear that they are not to blame! More details are to be found in your handouts.
  • Slide 22 - Children’s responses to significant circumstances involving loss “It was the worst part of my life – constantly being shouted at, frightened, living in fear,..thinking that every day could be our last” (Mulinder et al in Children and Domestic Violence, Gorin 2006.) “It took me a year and a half to get over it. ‘Cos I missed my dad.” (Facing Family Change – Wade & Smart, 2002)
  • Slide 23 - What may children want? They are most likely to talk with relatives and/or friends rather than professionals. Appropriate information and where to get help. Kindness and comfort offered in a general way from adults at school. A good starting point could be to ask ‘What could we do to help?’ What would help most?’
  • Slide 24 - Reflections What we have done today may have been enough for you to reflect on your skills and knowledge. You may have gained some new thoughts, skills and awareness of where to go for help. We are all on a journey and I hope that this short workshop has provided you with something to take with you and will help yourself and the young people you care for. Thank you for your time. John Fardon June 2008 www.empower-plus.co.uk

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