Food | Fun | Family | Life

Your destination for local reviews, recommendations and real-life stories from women just like you.

Children’s Wellbeing | Kids these days – they’ve got it made – or have they?

21st June 2019

A few easy ideas to help with your child’s mental wellbeing.

Children's Well-being


I’m a primary school teacher and I’m a mum to a beautiful, bright and bubbly six-year-old. I witness the ups and downs of wellbeing in children every day. Every parent faces the same dilemma – how to ensure the wellbeing of our children – particularly from a mental health perspective in a world that is more pressure than ever in more ways than one.

I have my own worries, and they probably match yours if you’re also a mum of a child of any age. But I also have a few ideas to share with you that I practice with my daughter Lyla – exercises that help to ensure she communicates her thoughts and feelings with me so I can do my best to make sure that she’s ok.


Tested to the limit – exams for 6-year-olds

Life seemed so simple back in the 1990s when I was growing up. The only thing I had to worry about was whether my Tamagotchi would make it through the night if I forgot to feed it.

I certainly don’t ever remember having to do a test before I hit double numbers.

The pressure of targets, scores and age-related goals just weren’t on my radar when I was six. And I  didn’t think they were on daughter Lyla’s until she wrote me a note in our ‘Letters Book’ penning her worried about her phonics screening test.

I’m a teacher myself and I’ve witnessed children crying due to the pressure of their SATs Exams. My husband Matt was shocked when I handed him a SATs practice paper and told him to have a stab at it one evening. He struggled with it!

The amount of work that’s got to be covered by these kids in such a short amount of time is crazy and it’s slowly wearing the poor little people down. I’m lucky – the school I teach in has a really balanced and varied timetable that includes plenty of art, sports and music but some schools don’t make time for anything other than English and Maths. All day long. For six-year-olds!? It’s soul-destroying for the kids and also the teachers.


Cyberbullying – every parent’s nightmare

Social Media – something else that wasn’t an issue when I was a nipper. As a teacher and a mum, it scares the life out of me. Back in the 1990s, before social media existed, if some nasty 10-year old took a disliking to another kid, most of the time that nastiness would take place in the school playground. A kick in the shin, a few insults about what trainers he/she was wearing, and, the cold shoulder. Come home time the poor kid was able to escape – go home to their safe place and have a little respite from the bullies. But social media has changed all that.

There’s no respite now. Mobile phones have made sure of that. However much schools try and control it, they can’t.

The thought of my little Lyla being sent nasty messages whilst she’s at home – the place that should be her safe place, her haven, makes me feel sick. But how do we handle these situations? We can’t fight every battle for them, but equally, we can’t sit back and watch our children being tormented and terrorized in the comfort of their own home.


Our children’s mental health – how do we keep it healthy?

Mental health, wellbeing, self-care, self-love – we’re all (myself included) looking for ways to improve our own mental wellbeing but what about the minds and wellbeing of our children?

According to youngminds.org “mental health issues in children are increasing while child wellbeing is deteriorating” and that terrifies me. We toilet train our offspring, we educate them on the benefits of their 5-a-day and the outcomes of too much sugar. We put plasters on their knees when they fall over and cut themselves, fill hot water bottles when they have an earache and advise them to wear weather-appropriate clothing so they don’t catch colds or get a sunburn. They know if they stay up all night they are inevitably going to be knackered the following day but an early night the following day more often than not sorts that out.

But educating them on how to look after their mental health is much trickier right?



Try it at home and help to keep your child’s mental wellbeing on track

(Disclaimer – I do not have a mental health nursing background, I’m absolutely no authority on mental wellbeing and sometimes I struggle with my own mental health but I am a mum; a teacher and someone who sees the value in looking after our own wellbeing).


The Letters Book

Children's Well-being
We started a ‘letters book’ earlier this. basically it a book that Lyla can write her thoughts and feelings in, in her own time and in her own words. It might be a subject that she may struggle to say out loud – stuff that’s bothering her or questions that she may have. She leaves in on my bedside table and I’ll reply to her questions, thoughts and feelings and leave it by her bed. We talk about all sorts, but this is agreat tool to help her along her way.

Cards of Reflection

Children's Well-being

Writing stuff down is a bit of a theme in our house. Lyla also enjoys responding to little cards of reflection that I leave out every now and then. They help her to reflect on her day.

Sit down, switch off and have tea

As often as we can, we sit down properly at the table and have our tea together (it might be ‘dinner’ in your neck of the woods). No TV, no tablets – no distractions of any kind. We use this opportunity to chat about her day and I then chat to her about the problems that I may have faced so she knows that everyone, even mummies and daddies – face regular difficulties in life. We discuss how I may have tackled hurdles in my day and in turn, we discuss any issues she may want to raise.

The best things in life are free. The Gift of Time

Children's Well-being

Some time ago I started what I call ‘The Gift of Time’ box for Lyla. Every month she gets to open an envelope which contains something that we’ll do together as a family. More often than not it’s outdoorsy stuff such as going on a mystery walk or having fish and chips somewhere outside whilst watching the sunset. The hope is that she recognises that the best things in life cost very little or nothing at all. Going for a good old long walk really helps to boost my mood, clears my head and uplifts my wellbeing. I want to pass all this information onto Lyla – I want her to appreciate the activities that will help boost her mood, lift her spirits and help her mental wellbeing too.

Kids might have opportunities galore and technology at their fingertips – stuff we never even dreamed of. But if their wellbeing isn’t nurtured and cared for, all these opportunities and technology will do is destroy them, so my advice to you is to go back to basics.


What do you do with your kids to help their personal wellbeing? We’d love to know.


1 Comment

  1. Lisa Clarke

    Your an inspiration Emma x x


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Brands We Love

Follow Us

Thanks for reading this post, we hope that you enjoyed it. You can follow Girl About Blog Squad by clicking in the links below – keep up to date with Girl About news and Reviews.

Share this Article

Share it on your own social media channels or with friends


REVIEW |  Locksley Distillery Gin School – If you love gin you MUST to do this!

REVIEW | Locksley Distillery Gin School – If you love gin you MUST to do this!

“THIS IS THE BEST DAY OF MY LIFE!” my friend Kat yelled to me over the sound of a gently bubbling still with a massive gin grin on her face. For me, it probably doesn’t quite trump my wedding day or the birth of my babies, but it’s not far off! We became master mixologists, creating our own gin recipes before distilling ‘Madam Geneva’ in our own miniature stills.

RECOMMENDATION | Darkhorse Stratford, East Village – East London

RECOMMENDATION | Darkhorse Stratford, East Village – East London

Hidden in the heart of the East Village, part of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and just a stones throw from Stratford station, are a handful of restaurants and bars. And right in the middle is Darkhorse bar and restaurant. It’s described on their website as a ‘modern European restaurant with Italian and Spanish influenced food wrapped in a British attitude’.

Follow us on Instagram @GIRLABOUTBLOGSQUAD


Instagram has returned invalid data.



The Girl About Blog Squad is a collective of female bloggers across the UK. One platform made up of lots of localised personal blogs from ladies just like you.

Each blogger has their own personal patch - they are the official Girl About their own little corner of the UK. Their mission is to provide Girl About readers with their recommendations and honest and frank reviews on places to eat, sleep, drink, relax & unwind and have fun in their neck of the woods - with or without the kids.

The Blog Squad and Girl About readers are largely made up woman in their 30s and 40s - multi-tasking fiery females with a lust for life and a level of expectation that comes with being a modern mum, friend, a career woman with responsibilities, commitments and a serious lack of free time - Girl About provides proper honest, down-to-earth, easy to digest and well-written content for your enjoyment, so grab a cuppa and catch up with the Girl About Blog Squad.


Be the first to hear about competitions & special offers and never miss an article