New Woodlands School has a number of intervention programmes in place that aim to support a pupil's progress, inside and outside of the classroom.
Some of our staff involved in these programs are described below.
Suzanne Spiers - Dramatherapist
HCPC Badth registered
Dramatherapy allows a child to explore feelings and experiences safely, using dramatic distance. This can feel up close, but the creative intervention contains the drama. Talking alone can be hard for a young person and knowing what they need even harder.
Together we can explore creative scenarios or experiments that contain real challenges and embed counselling when helpful. Play for the sake of playing can also help a child be less stuck in unhelpful ways of being or feeling and also bring comfort.
As we know, children move with ease from the literal to the symbolic or imaginary world. As a Dramatherapist, I enjoy the dynamic nature of working with children. I originally trained as an actor, hold a B.A. Joint Honours Degree in Drama and Dance and worked in Community Theatre before going on to qualify as a Dramatherapist in 1995.
Dramatherapists also train in child and adult psychology, as well as how creativity is key to human development at all stages in our lives, and especially useful at times of change or challenge.
Since qualifying I have worked in schools across London and in a variety of community settings to support the wellbeing of children of all ages and circumstances. The ability to be creative and interactive is a unifying force that helps unite us all and supports a child's sense of self and overall resilience.
The therapeutic relationship with a trained Therapist can also help to enhance the effectiveness of the creative interventions and work, holding it at an appropriate level for each individual child's needs.
Dr David Neblett - Specialist Educational Psychologist
I am a Chartered Psychologist being a Fellow of the British Psychological Society since April 2003. Additionally, I hold registration with the Health Professionals Councils (HPC) under the category of ‘Practitioner Psychologist’.
I have worked with children, parents, carers and allied professionals for over two decades. My professional experience ranged initially from working with children at risk of exclusion both socially and academically and their families in non-statutory settings. In addition, I have been a Teacher of Science and Pastoral Deputy to students in the statutory phase of their Secondary education in a mainstream school.
My professional background has been in the education sector. First as a teacher and Pastoral Deputy and latterly as an Educational Psychologist. Through professional development and ongoing training, my practice has broadened to incorporate therapeutic support to individuals who are in the adolescent phase of their development. Thus I have experience and expertise in the psychological assessment of children and deprivation, mental health issues and domestic mobility.
Lewisham & Greenwich NHS Trust - Speech & Language Therapists (SLT)
Speech and Language Therapists work with children who have speech, language and communication needs. This may include difficulties understanding what others say (e.g. instructions given in the classroom), difficulties expressing their thoughts and ideas, difficulties articulating sounds clearly and difficulties with social communication and interaction (e.g. working in groups and making friends).
The Speech and Language Therapists work with children, staff and parents at:
- The universal level e.g. raising awareness of speech, language and communication needs and ways in which school staff can manage these as part of their teaching practice
- The targeted level e.g. supporting school staff to set up and run group interventions to facilitate children’s communication skills
- The specialist level e.g. delivering specific interventions to individual children.
The SLT's also work closely with the OT and other professionals such as Educational Psychologists.
Lewisham & Greenwich NHS Trust - Occupational Therapist
Occupational Therapy in the school contributes to enhancing an environment as we recognise the environment changed can hugely contribute to enablement and performance more so sometimes than directly trying to affect change of the young person. We try and impact the promotion of wellbeing and emotional regulation to assist the development of functional self-care and school skills as well as supporting learning. To do this we start with completing an assessment and then will provide small group and one to one sessions with the young person as well as training for school staff. Sessions with the children and young people use play and motivating activities to set specific goals and develop skills in hand function, handwriting, using tools such as scissors and knife and forks, dressing, self-organisation, resilience, problem solving with the ability to generate their own solutions. We measure our effectiveness in promoting positive changes and use evidenced intervention. We offer a Drop-In Clinic for parents and carers to discuss advice that has been given and raise small concerns.
Pupils across the school have the opportunity to participate in outdoor learning and activities at Bromley’s Environmental Education Centre at High Elms.
Bromley’s Environmental Education Centre at High Elms (BEECHE) is a place where people of all ages and backgrounds can pursue their interests in Science, Nature, Art, Philosophy, Literature and Music in an awe-inspiring landscape of woodlands, grasslands and ponds.
BEECHE provide positive, fun and educational experiences that support wider learning and promote respect and empathy for each other, communities and countryside.