Supporting Children and Young People with Anxiety : A Practical Guide book cover
1st Edition

Supporting Children and Young People with Anxiety
A Practical Guide

ISBN 9780815377214
Published December 11, 2018 by Routledge
214 Pages

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Book Description

This accessible and user-friendly resource will help a wide range of adults support children and young people with anxiety. Clear information on the nature of anxiety is combined with helpful ideas, practical strategies and resources to help adults feel confident in understanding and managing the emotional well-being of children and young people.

Supporting Children and Young People with Anxiety cuts through the literature and provides practical support based on sound psychological theory and evidence-based practice. Intervention programmes and suggested strategies have been tried and tested in schools and colleges, with young people and families, and can be adapted for use with groups, individual children or parents. Presuming no prior experience on the part of the reader, the authors acknowledge the challenges involved in recognising anxiety and delivering tailored treatment, and emphasise the role of prevention and early intervention.

All resources are provided as photocopiable and downloadable resources which can be easily customised for use with children and parents. This essential text will prove an invaluable resource for worried parents, students, teachers and carers, enabling them to soothe, support and empower the young people in their care.

Table of Contents

List of Figures



How to Use This Book

Part 1: Understanding Anxiety

Chapter One: What Is Anxiety?

Chapter Two: Challenges to Overcome

Chapter Three: Understanding Child and Adolescent Development in Relation to Anxiety

Part 2: Managing Anxiety at School

Chapter Four: Whole School Support

Chapter Five: Anxiety in the Classroom

Chapter Six: Preparing to Work with Small Groups and/or Individuals

Part 3: Managing Anxiety at Home

Chapter Seven: Support and Advice for Parents/Carers

Chapter Eight: Creating a Healthy Lifestyle

Part 4: Practical Interventions

Chapter Nine: Ten Week Intervention Programme for Small Groups

Chapter Ten: A Model for Working with Individual Students

Part 5: Appendices

Appendix 1: Worksheets for Group Sessions

Appendix 2: Missions for Group Sessions

Appendix 3: Worksheets for Working with Individuals

Appendix 4: PowerPoint and Information Sheets for Parent Workshops


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Elizabeth Herrick is a Chartered Educational Psychoogist, former Principal Eductional Psychologist with Southampton Local Authoority UK, currently working as an Independent Consultant with schools and families in Southampton and Hampshire, UK.

Barbara Redman-White is an Educational Psychologist currently working in the Cayman Islands, with more than 20 years of experience as an Educational Psychologist in the UK.


"This useful practical guide to understanding and managing anxiety is most timely. The external pressures on children and young people are many; the incidence of mental health problems is increasing and troubling youngsters and their families. Teachers, assistants, youth workers and parents will welcome this book with a loud hurrah as it provides clear information about the nature of anxiety and, best of all, there are many helpful ideas and practical programmes which will enable adults to feel confident in using tried and tested resources which have been shown to reduce anxiety in most children and young people. The authors, Liz Herrick and Barbara Redman-White, have many years’ experience in working with troubled youngsters. This book is an excellent distillation of their understanding of anxiety and of what works when managing it. It is a much-needed resource for schools, colleges, childcare settings and parents." - Glenys Fox, Education Consultant and Former Principal Educational Psychologist and HMI, Ofsted, UK.

"[...] the first half [of this book] offers a lot of comprehensive and accessible information, and the second half gives excellent resources that can be photocopied and downloaded. I can see this is going to be a frequent reference text for me this year." - Educational Psychology Today, UK.

"Liz Herrick and Barbara Redman-White are highly experienced and talented psychologists with a detailed understanding of how children may be supported when psychological problems occur. For the adults around young people – parents and carers, teachers, assistants and young people themselves, this book will be genuine help in helping to overcome anxiety. Around one in five young people experience significant mental health issues and there is evidence that this is on the rise – anxiety, depression and anger can all be debilitating and impact on young people and those around them. Liz and Barbara cut through the literature to give useful and practical strategies to soothe and support young people and defeat crippling anxiety. Worried parents, students, and empathic teachers and carers will make good use of this book and empower young people to take back control of their lives." - Peter Sharp, BSc PGCE DipEd CertEdPsych MA CPsychol AFBPsS, Freelance consultant on health, wellbeing, education and social care. Former chief psychologist, director of consultancy and chief executive of the Centre for Workforce Intelligence. Author of ‘Nurturing Emotional Literacy’.

"This highly accessible guide to supporting children and young people with anxiety would be invaluable to all teachers, teaching assistants, parents and carers. Written in a clear and engaging way, there are many practical ideas for supporting children as well as information to enable a thorough understanding of the needs of children and young people with anxiety. […] Encouraging schools to consider the ethos and values of their school is an exceptionally refreshing approach to the one that very often focuses entirely on the individual and their ‘deficits’. There are also lots of positive ideas for working in partnership with parents and carers to support with managing emotions at home with plenty of photocopiable resources provided as well as links to online support." - Julie Wharton, Senior Lecturer and Leader of the National Award for SEN Co-ordination, University of Winchester, UK.

"Supporting Children and young People with Anxiety is a valuable resource that I will be requesting for the University library and bringing to students’ attention. Most professionals working in education recognise the high degree of anxiety amongst those they work with. The deeper understanding of anxiety and the practical strategies to help children and young people are often lacking, however, and this is where this accessible book proves so timely and useful.

I shared my inspection copy with some of my students and the response was enthusiastic. Comments included:

‘I particularly liked the "parents as role models" exercise where it includes a number of questions for parents to answer.  I also thought the page on How to Manage Panic Attacks was very helpful.’

‘I would definitely recommend this book to my setting as I think they could utilise the Ten Week Programme and Powerpoint Presentation for staff and parents’.

Students commented on the book’s usefulness not just in their professional roles but in their personal lives as parents. I am confident the book will find a good home on the shelves of all keen to support children and young people’s wellbeing." - Karen Morris, Senior Lecturer, University of Winchester, UK

"This is a highly practical book, very user friendly and full of useful downloadable resources. It's wide-ranging in its coverage and provides support for children and young people of all ages, individually or in groups, with resources for all adults involved with young people, including parents, carers and teachers. Readers are helped to understand the nature of anxiety and given helpful ideas, practical strategies and resources to empower them to help those in their care. The book doesn't waffle but gets straight down to facts which are clearly and succinctly presented in a way that is accessible even to those with little knowledge or experience." - Sarah Brew, Parents in Touch

"This text provides easily accessed and beautifully constructed insight into how parents and professionals alike can not only deepen their understanding of how anxiety affects the thoughts and behaviour of children and young people, but also how we might support those experiencing it to understand and manage it more effectively for themselves.

What particularly makes this book stand out is the emphasis on gently helping children acknowledge and understand their anxiety at a neurological, physical and emotional level first, before introducing the idea that changing their thoughts and behaviour is possible.

Strong emphasis is also placed on helping children and young people develop their pre-requisite skills at a developmentally appropriate level. For example, understanding and expressing their emotions and spending time considering the role emotions play on thoughts and behaviour. Sensitively and creatively constructed resources to support individual and group work allow supporting adults to help the children themselves to identify, challenge and then change their negative thoughts and then subsequent behaviours safely.

As a practicing psychologist living in the US, I can already see that the way this text promotes a better understanding of how accurate thinking can lead to suitable behaviour is an invaluable message to promote not just within UK classrooms, but beyond them too." - Dr Joy Boughton, Educational Psychologist

"Educational psychologists could confidently recommend this book to school staff or parents seeking further guidance in this area. The authors’ underlying approach to anxiety highlights the role of the environment, including the whole school environment, and focuses heavily on our interpersonal responses to anxious children. Overall, the book is non-stigmatising and positive." - Louise Meehan, Educational Psychology in Practice