This therapeutic story focuses on worries about transition to secondary school. Jake is in Year 6. He is worried about the transition to secondary school because he has heard many rumours, including one about the older pupils flushing first years' heads down the toilets. The story illustrates how many of the pupils share similar worries about the impending transition even though their behavior looks different. Jake's behaviour illustrates his initial negative coping strategies as his worry grows.
This includes not talking about it, opting out of his usual interests and activities, not sleeping and becoming angry with his mother. Some of his worries are alleviated on his taster visit to the new school, especially when he plucks up the courage to go into the boys' toilets. Following a misunderstanding in the toilets with some older boys, he is able to share his worries with another pupil and use humour to reflect on his behaviour. The accompanying, 'Let's talk about worry' text shares information and facts about mental health and transition.
Paula Nagel has worked as an educational psychologist for 17 years. This has included working as a Lead Professional Educational Psychologist managing a traded service, as well as holding Senior Specialist posts for early years and disability. Over the years Paula has worked in multi-agency teams within paediatric services, youth offending teams, Sure Start and an anti-bullying service. She is currently Principal Educational Psychologist (North) for the national children's mental health charity, Place2Be. Before qualifying as an Educational Psychologist Paula was a primary school teacher.
Gary Bainbridge is an artist, comics creator and secondary school Art, Photography and Media Studies teacher from Durham. He's best known for the North East based kitchen sink superhero comic Sugar Glider and the Newcastle-set crime fiction comic, Nightbus. Gary teaches at an academy in Northumberland.