For some students September is a daunting prospect. Not only is summer over and another year of school is about to begin, for those starting year 7 it can mean lots of changes, lots of unknowns and lots to worry about.

With this in mind, 18 months ago we approached a local primary school with the idea of supporting students who might struggle with the move from year 6 to year 7. The staff were very keen for us to be involved and so we set about writing some material for a transition group.

This initiative is now in its second year and has been used in 3 schools. With the aim of seeing students settled and thriving in secondary schools we meet groups of year 6 students for 6 weeks at the end of summer term and then continue the group for 6 weeks at the start of year 7.

By using games, questions and activities we help the students think through topics such as:

- Who we are

- How we feel

- Coping with Change

- Practicalities of starting a new school

- Friendship

- Teamwork

This group provided a safe place for students to chat through their thoughts and feelings as well as providing a natural peer support group during the time of transition.

We’ve been delighted to meet with these amazing students, seeing them engage enthusiastically with the group work and taking the opportunity to be honest with themselves and each other about the struggles and worries they face during this period of transition. Now enjoying year 7, we wish them all the best for the rest of the school year and their future studies!

Lizzi Demetriou, Schools & Youth Manager says “It’s great to see the change in students as the weeks go by and to see them happy and thriving in secondary school by the end!”