Children at Chilton Primary in Ramsgate dressed to express as part of a charity awareness initiative for young people’s mental health support.
Girls and boys of all age groups wore outfits and accessories to demonstrate their individuality and how they felt proud to be themselves.
It was part of the school’s ongoing support for the annual Children's Mental Health Week (Feb 7-13), organised by the charity Place2Be.
The theme of this year's event was ‘growing together’ which focussed on growing emotionally and finding ways to help each other grow.
Deputy Head Teacher and Early Years Lead Hannah Cheshire explained: “Challenges and setbacks can help us to grow and adapt; trying new things can help us to move beyond our comfort zone into a new realm of possibility and potential.
“However, emotional growth is often a gradual process that happens over time, and sometimes we might feel a bit ‘stuck’.”
Chilton Primary welcomed special guest John Lake, who works for Charlton Athletic FC community trust, and who ran some workshops for the children.
This centred on creating a ‘well-being well’. This involved adding helpful and heartfelt suggestions for their classmates to ‘dip into’ to boost their own well-being if they are feeling down.
Pupils also took part in calming art activities, creating support balloons for each other.
Head of School Kate Law said the dress to express day was a success. She said: “It was a fun way of exploring and understanding serious issues. It supports the children to understand the importance of self-care, well-being and how to look after their own mental health. This is a vital part what we do in school.
“Kindness, tolerance, respect and understanding are aspects of life that our children understand well and are themes we discuss with them regularly throughout their time at Chilton.
“The Place2Be charity offers excellent support to children and we are happy to embrace its awareness programme.”
Place2Be is a children’s mental health charity with more than 25 years’ experience working with pupils, families and staff in UK schools.
The charity states: “We provide mental health support in schools through one-to-one and group counselling using tried and tested methods backed by research. We also offer expert training and professional qualifications.”
Find out more online at www.place2be.org.uk
Chilton Primary is part of the Viking Academy Trust with partner schools Upton Juniors and Ramsgate Arts Primary.
*For more information contact Deputy Head of School Natalie Barrow on 01843 597695