Understanding How Trauma Impacts on Children’s Learning and Behaviour

“Useful techniques and strategies I can take back to school and share with the staff team.”

“Your expert input and the discussions were invaluable. I feel more empowered to work with the children now.”

“Once again an informative and enjoyable course. Thank you Cath”

Implementing and Early Years Approach to Emotional Health and Wellbeing Interventions

“Fantastic course. Informative and thought provoking.”

“Great to have new strategies and ideas to respond to children’s behaviour differently”

“Provided a clear and concise understanding of emotional wellbeing. Great strategies to use across the whole school”

Implementing a whole school approach to emotional health and wellbeing interventions feedback

“The whole training was very interesting and very well delivered, can’t wait to try it”

“Inspirational. I enjoyed it all and can’t wait to get started”

“Great to know the programmes are tried, tested and successful”

“Very clear and accessible approach to managing children’s behaviour. I feel I could go into school tomorrow and deliver the programmes”

“The entire day was useful and inspiring. I feel we will be able to put the interventions in place easily with the book. The idea of using reflective language was very interesting”

“The book is well set out and easy to work with, very clear information that I could relate to children I work with”

“A great day with some very useful information. Cath’s obvious knowledge of primary education really makes the training very appropriate”

“The whole thing was really good and very interesting, can’t wait to start delivering the programmes”

“Really useful that everything you need for the programmes is in the book and is both practical and detailed”

“Very clear and well explained, useful to come with a colleague, we have already planned when we can start delivering the group work programmes”

“The materials are accessible and easy to use and will help the facilitator prepare for each session”

Whole School Approach

“Cath has been a Play Therapist at my school for five and a half years and has made a significant and lasting impact to every child she has worked with, particularly those with very complex needs.

Parents, children and staff all find Cath to be a highly skilled professional who can work on a very wide range of issues.

She is very approachable, puts everyone at ease and has a natural ability to challenge and move people’s thinking on by empowering them”

Lisa Vyas, Executive Headteacher, Kingsway Federation, Ladybarn and Green End Primary Schools, Manchester

“The work that Cath has done over the last five and a half years in our school has been absolutely fabulous. She has helped me to keep the emotional needs of children firmly in my heart and in the forefront of my mind when dealing with often very challenging and difficult behaviour.

I have seen the positive impact of her work on both children and parents alike. She has provided enormous support and guidance throughout our school community.”

Sam Foord, Deputy Head,Ladybarn Primary School, Manchester

“The work that Cath has done within our school has had a massive impact both on staff and pupils alike. Her consultation sessions for staff have given teachers the resilience and guidance to both recognise and deal with the sensitive and challenging issues which are an increasingly common feature in inner city schools.

The work that she has done with one child who was at serious risk of exclusion because of her inability to manage her behaviour has been particularly remarkable.  The little girl is now able to self regulate her feelings and emotions and consequently, is now happy and achieving in school.”

Janet Swailes, Deputy Head, Ladybarn Primary School, Manchester

“As a cluster of local schools we had searched for a long time to find the ideal person to work alongside our three schools. We needed someone who would be sympathetic to the needs of all of our school and would consider carefully how best our schools could be supported to develop the social skills of our children. Cath met with us and we built up an immediate rapport with her and we could see that her skills would benefit all of our schools.

At St Willibrord’s Cath has developed the skills of two TA’s to continue her excellent work, she has worked closely with several children in the school and considerably increased their levels of interaction and performance in the classroom. Cath has also supported families from our school and they have commented on the excellent suggestions that Cath has been able to make for their own situations and the practical benefit that these have been to all of their family.”

Carl McIver,  Head of School, St. Willibrord’s R.C. Primary, Manchester

“The work of the school’s play therapist provides effective support for vulnerable children and families.”

Ladybarn Ofsted Report June 2008

Parent Feedback from individual play therapy

“I felt very comfortable talking to Cath about my sons situation and felt she understood and didn’t pass judgment on what i had to say and the problems we were having. Cath has worked very very hard with my son, i know this because of the much improved change in his behaviour. “

” My daughter felt she had been supported and listened to.It’s a very helpful service. “

“Having support from Cath on a regular basis has really helped me understand my child better and be more sympathetic to his behaviour. it has helped me to think about why he may be behaving in a particular way and has helped us talk to each other more easily.”

Feedback from child on Year 6 school report

“My behaviour used to be bad, but since I went to play therapy it has improved a lot.”

Feedback from training sessions

Understanding the impact of grief and bereavement on children’s well-being and behaviour 

“I feel much better equipped to deal with a child’s grief / bereavement.  It’s given me plenty to think about.”

“Invaluable advice, clear and well paced delivery.”

How relationships impact on learning:

Foundation stage

“This really made me think about the children’s behaviour differently. Another fantastic session. Thank you.”

“Really useful. It gave me lots of strategies to manage behaviour and made me think about how I interact with children.”

“Excellent. It made so much sense and has improved mu understanding of the children I work with.”

“I love these sessions – Cath is very interesting and she always talks about things that are important for us to know.”

Key stage one

“ I really found it enjoyable and interesting, it makes you think about the children you work with in a different light.”

“I particularly enjoyed exploring the types of attachment and how they manifest in children’s behaviour.”
“The tasks made things easier to understand. More training like this would be very welcome.”

“I really enjoyed this session and feel I can use the strategies in my class. I was thinking of certain children throughout the session.”

How relationships impact on Learning:

Key stage two

“Great. This was really useful and interesting. It has helped me to focus and think about what may be causing children’s behaviour.”

“It was really useful to explore the possible reasons for children’s behaviour and great to have some strategies to try out.”

“This has been really clear and easy to comprehend. I now feel that I can cope with different behaviour in my class.”

Understanding Feelings and Frustrations in the Foundation Stage

” All the information was useful and interesting.Lots of good strategies recommended and very thought provoking. “

“Useful to get a deeper understanding of behaviour and the reasons behind it. It really made me think about what is going on or could be in the children’s lives, both now and in the past and how this affects their behaviour.”

“It encouraged me to look deeper than a tantrum and made me think about the “whys” of children’s behaviour.”

” Found it really useful and have learned some new techniques to use with more challenging children. “

“Very interesting and useful .very different to any other behaviour training we have received.Will be putting it into practice.”

How Attachment Impacts on Learning

” I enjoyed learning about the different types of attachment and strategies to use, it made me think about specific children in my class.”

” The suggested strategies are helpful and the definitions of attachment helped me to think about children’s behaviour and needs and how to cater for these. “

“Very interesting. I will use the pack to refer back to and try and understand the children i work with better.Very thought provoking. “

“This workshop immediately made me think of particular children. I really enjoyed doing totally child centred thinking. “

“I think this workshop will promote a great deal of discussion amongst the staff. Thank you. (Headteacher) “

” Very clear, concise information that I feel I can put into practice straight away.Good examples relevant to my role and experience. “

” Very useful. I could recognise various children in my class and now have a better understanding of how to deal with them. “

” It was all very useful. I have already identified children to use the strategies with.”

” Having more of an understanding in this area will help staff have more empathy and a better approach when dealing with children and their emotional needs. (Headteacher) “

“Really interesting and enjoyable.Made me think about things I do well and things i need to do better. Thank you.”

“I feel I will be able to use lots of the information given to help me with a better understanding of the children. “

” I enjoyed this session. If only I had this information last year it would probably have saved a good few months of trying to work out and understand behaviour patterns within my class. “

” As an NQT last year, this would have been a very useful starting point. Perhaps it could be incorporated into NQT induction ? “

“It was useful to have time to reflect on children’s emotional and behavioural issues and to have clarification of some reasons for children’s behaviour.”

“Good, clear descriptions of different types of attachment. Very useful to have written notes to refer back to, reassuring to be able to identify certain patterns of behaviour. “

“Extremely useful. Great scenarios and thought provoking content. Useful tips.”

“Presented in a very open and non threatening way.”

“Identifying the different types of attachment made me reflect on why children behave the way they do rather than focusing on the behaviour. Very interesting and thought provoking. “

“Extremely clear and coherent. The strategies for handling children were very helpful . I have never considered the different forms of attachment but can readily identify children who demonstrate patterns of behavior which fit the different attachments, which is really beneficial to my own understanding. “

“All useful information. Really helpful in identifying and helping me manage different types of behaviour in my class. “

Lunchtime organiser training evaluation

“I’ve learnt there are other ways to deal with situations in a more effective way.”

“I enjoyed exploring other ways of speaking to the children and understanding why a child may be misbehaving.”

“It was useful to think of how we could express things in a kinder and more effective way.”

Emotional Awareness Staff Discussion Group (EASD)

” I have really enjoyed these sessions and feel much better about how to manage and understand children’s emotions and behaviour. Thank you ! “

“Knowing that other people were feeling the same as me has really helped me. I have found the strategies that we discussed helpful and I have enjoyed working in a supportive environment. It has been really beneficial. “

“This was a useful and supportive group to be part of and I feel it would be especially beneficial for other NQT’s . It helped me not to feel overwhelmed or “bogged down” by problems. “

” It was useful to look at the underlying issues in children’s lives and how these can be reflected in their behaviour. I enjoyed trying new ideas, re- evaluating them and following up with new ideas. “

” I really enjoyed the sessions, got lots out of it and fed back strategies to my team. “

Groupwork training

“I have learnt loads today and can’t wait to get started on delivering the groups. “

“Enjoyed all of the session, informative but relaxed. Everything was explained and all questions answered.”

“Cath was excellent and made me feel really comfortable. I am looking forward to starting the group next week.”

“The whole day was enjoyable. The pack which has been put together is very informative with step by step instructions. “

Using reflective language to strengthen attachment relationships:

Key Stage one

“ I loved the discussions and role play. It has motivated me to try it in class”

“It’s useful to understand how much of what we say and do impacts on the children, it’s made me more self aware.”

“I really enjoyed the sessions and found it helpful and informative”

“I feel it has helped me understand the children I work with a lot better . It has made me think about them in more depth”

“Excellent training. It helped me understand how children may have different issues and the reasons for this”

“It was all very useful and will enrich my practice”

Key Stage two

“Cath is fantastic and is very interesting – I loved learning more”

“It was great understanding more about how children behave and why and what to do”

“A really useful approach to help enhance learning, especially introducing concepts that help to understand behaviour”

Using reflective language in the classroom:

Key Stage Two

“Excellent strategies to support children, with really useful examples”

“Very useful perspective on communication and how using reflective language can change behaviour”

“Second session I’ve been two and really enjoyed. I love learning from Cath”

“Very stimulating, lots to think about”

Key Stage One

“I love these sessions”

“I loved the chance to put into practice what we learnt and come back again”

“Very clear session, liked the pace”

“We need more sessions like this please”

“Interesting, well-paced and informative”

“Made me think about my own teaching style and how to improve it”

Positive approaches and strategies to managing children’s behaviour

“Fantastic session. More of this type of training would be very welcome.”

“Great pace, easy to follow and thought provoking.”

“Extremely useful session, I can’t wait to put it into practice at school”

“Made me think about my practice in the classroom. Great strategies that can be implemented.”

Parent Feedback from Play and Stay group

“I found it useful having the books to read each week and enjoyed doing the activities. They should have more groups for parents.”

“I enjoyed the group a lot because it helped me to become close to my child. I found it useful because we enjoyed playing together. I will continue what I have learnt in the group with my child.”

“I enjoyed talking about my son’s behaviour and listening to the other parents and how their children are with them. I enjoyed having time with my son.”


” As a supervisor I have always found Cath to be very professional and competent. She is able to listen, and allow the space for exploring the child’s process and discussing what might be happening within the therapeutic relationship. She supports this with useful and appropriate theoretical ideas and has years of experience working with children to draw upon. As the Project Supervisor she is always available to contact and offers guidance and challenge, which are both essential to my role as a therapist. “