Kingsleigh Primary School, Bournemouth

Our Hamish & Milo Story

Kingsleigh Primary School is a large four-form entry school in Bournemouth, Dorset. It has high aspirations and believes that “…everyone should be able to learn, thrive and achieve their best in a secure, vibrant and inspiring environment.”

The school values are central to the whole school approach and are ‘Respect, Belonging and Aspiration’ and are recognised as important for all aspects of school life. The Ofsted inspection in 2018 commented on how the school is “warm, welcoming and inclusive” and the school continues to highlight the focus on developing confident children with high self-esteem as an important part of the ethos and culture.

Kingsleigh Primary began to use the Hamish & Milo programme to support the wellbeing and mental health of the children in the Autumn term 2021 and it is currently being developed as an approach within ‘The Cove,’ the schools nurture and alternative provision for children who are supported by the pastoral team, Jacqui Bragginton (Mental Health Support) and Elaine Hayes (Pastoral TA),

Within ‘The Cove,’ the children are supported with their learning and their social and emotional development and it offers a safe, nurturing approach as part of the school provision.

Hamish & Milo Resilient Me The biscuit challenge Activity

Hamish & Milo is being used for small group work, some 1-1 intervention and as part of the emotional curriculum for the children and is now being developed for further small group work and targeted intervention led by the Emotional Literacy Support Assistants (ELSAs).

The main programmes they have begun to use are: ‘Exploding me’, ‘My friends and me’ and ‘Resilient me’. One of the key highlights has been the ‘Resilient me’ pack. Elaine explained how:

“It has really opened our eyes using this programme in how we have had results with children we wouldn’t have expected to. There was one boy, who really kept going when we didn’t expect him to. He watched the others in the marshmallow task and then he had a go. Of all the people I thought he would get cross, but he succeeded and was chuffed to bits that he had achieved something! We were then able to talk to them all about how some things work for some of us and other things work for others and that’s OK and how you build resilience by having another go even when it is hard.”

Hamish & Milo Resilient Me Rocket to the stars Activity
Hamish & Milo Resilient Me Marshmallow Chopsticks Activity2

Jacqui described how:

“One of our boys who usually would blow up, walked out of the room, but then came back to give it another go! We were amazed. It was a light bulb moment for him.”

Jacqui added how the children “loved the totem pole activity which was so insightful for the children. It allowed them to choose animals with their instinct and to match the aspects of that animal with their own characters. It was so interesting to see and helped the children think about themselves in a safe way too.”

Within ‘The Cove’ there are displays of the children’s work and much celebration in how the different activities are helping the children to think and talk about their feelings and experiences.

James Lumber, their Headteacher comments:

“The children are always fully engaged in the activities. I’ve been invited to join the resilience group on many occasions and have been so impressed with how the activities have allowed them to explore this area in such creative ways. It’s been brilliant to see.”

Jacqui is keen to develop the approach across the school supporting the ELSAs to use the resource with more children for targeted intervention and 1-1 work. She says:

“We like how the activities are all adaptable depending on the age and the range of children within each group and it would be a great resource to be used alongside our PSHE programme across the school to help children more with their emotional development.”

It is early days with how the resource is being embedded as part of the approach but there is enthusiasm and excitement about how it can be developed.

Hamish & Milo Resilient Me Rocket to the stars Activity
Hamish & Milo Resilient Me Totem Pole Activity
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