Little Buddies Early Years for Courage and Resilience is a children’s mental health program that is positive, innovative, original and engaging. The Little Buddies program promotes emotional resilience and mental wellbeing through supporting the core competencies of empathy, creativity, self-awareness and communication.
In summary, the programme consists of:
1)A 45 min interactive workshop with role play, games and discussion.
2). A copy of their own interactive workbook to use in pre-school and at home.
3)Individual self tools around emotional wellness.
Young children take delight in the story in the workbook, told with the help of our four furry animal friends who interact with a bench and a child. Each animal represents a thought, a feeling or an emotion and we discuss how to recognise and cope. It is open ended story allowing free will of the children’s imagination.
1) Sam Builds A Nest Care Box for Courage and Resilience.
2) A Little Buddy Bench
3) Resource information pack for your staff
Our team of qualified and experienced leaders come to your pre-school and delivers the Little Buddies workshop to each class. The cost of the workshop is €10 per child.
The Buddy Bench
We use the Buddy Bench as a symbolic visual tool to teach them how to identify and express their feelings. The program releases the stigma of asking for help and celebrates children who act with compassion, kindness and empathy.
We can deliver a Buddy Bench on the same day as the workshop..
The programme has undergone a positive preliminary evaluation by researchers in the National Centre for Mental Health Maynooth University , a full evaluation has now begun (funded by Irish Research Council) in order to provide proof of its effectiveness. Once this formal endorsement is in place, it is ready for national rollout via the curricula.
A Whole-pre-school approach
Evidence tells us that good mental health is essential for children to learn and achieve. By providing opportunities for young children, and the adults surrounding them, to develop the strengths and coping skills that underpin resilience early years settings can help their children (and staff) flourish and succeed.
To be effective the ethos of whole-pre-school, positive mental health should be a thread running through a pre-pre-school’s values and mission statement and be prominent across policies, procedures and practices, in line with national curriculum frameworks such as Siolta and Aistear.
What is a whole-pre-school approach?
A whole-pre-school approach is about developing a positive ethos and culture – where everyone feels that they belong. It involves working with families and making sure that the whole pre-school community is welcoming, inclusive and respectful. It means maximising children’s learning through promoting good mental health and well-being across the pre-school – through the curriculum, early support for children, staff-child relationships, leadership and a commitment from everybody.
Whole-pre-school approaches involve a pre-school leadership team. that: