Making big changes with courage

Summer term at school means the big push for exams, then (fingers crossed) a more fun-filled, last few weeks of term. It is also a time of saying goodbyes. Friends move away, you move on to new teachers, and, in some years, there’s the wait for GCSE and A level results.

Year 6 students say goodbye to primary and prep school and move to senior school. Year 11s move to college or sixth form, maybe at a different school. And Year 13 leave school, for college, work or Uni. It’s huge change. These are big changes but the Summer break can be an opportunity to prepare.

Each move has its challenges. The first year at senior school, Year 7, is known to be a wobbly one where you are trying to build your confidence and make new friends. Unfortunately it’s also a year that sees a lot of bullying, so working on confidence building is really important.

In Session Three gives your confidence a boost with lots of tips and ideas to keep the bullies at bay, starting with a questionnaire to help you work out your developing identity. Doing your Power Poses gives you the body language that says ‘Don’t mess with me!’

It’s also important for those who become bullies to learn why they do it and to be kinder.

Moving up to sixth form, on to college or Uni is also a big step in life. There are six steps to tackle uncertainty in the fifth session of, and they include reflecting on your fear, taking breaths when you feel panicky, and getting help from others. There are always other people in the same boat as you and you can help each other.

Our Resource Sheet has links to support organisations like Childline and Young Minds which have good advice on bullying. Every school has a bullying code and it’s important to get help from teachers and not suffer in silence.

One thing is certain though, we can’t stop growing up! And while these changes are scary, remember they are also exciting opportunities. Realise it takes time to settle in to new school years and new places; make the effort to do new things and make friends, don’t expect everything to just happen for you, like it was when you were a child.

It’s natural to be fearful of huge changes, but tell yourself there are exciting opportunities ahead.