A training session at Cumnor House School for Girls in Croydon to deliver a Dot Com training session to the teachers and staff. A teacher at the school, Gareth Tindall, had attended a Safeguarding session that Sharon Evans the CEO of Dot Com had talked at in Croydon earlier in the year and following this, had seen how beneficial the Dot Com programme could be for the school.
Fast forward a few months and Cumnor House School had ordered a full set of Dot Com journals and Sharon was invited to a training day at the school where she could talk them through the programme and offer some tips and tricks to help the school get the most out of the programme. It was great to see so many members of staff, not just teachers, attend the training session including the headmistress Dina Mallett. Delivering this type of training can be quite difficult so Sharon brought along some friends to help…
One of the things these sessions don’t do is tell teachers how to deliver this programme, after all, the teachers are the expert educators in this scenario. We are really there to give the school some more background and support and offer some guidance in the way the programme could be delivered. Sharon talked through the Dot characters and explained how the journals are character driven and allow children to experience things through the eyes of Dot and her friends – we can even supply you with the puppets if you want to bring your sessions to life!
There are two highlights that always seem to come out of these sessions which really help teachers see how the programme can help. Firstly we talk about Dot’s Helping Hand and encourage children to develop their own helping hand of people who can help them. They draw around their own hand in the journal and write in who is there to help them – so this will include parents, other family members, teachers, police officers etc. This is important as it provides children with a list of people who will be able to help them if they do experience an Uh Oh sign.
An Uh Oh sign is something that Dot – and everyone feels – when she is unsafe. It’s those butterflies in the stomach or the hairs standing up on your neck and the programme teaches them to trust their intuition. If something feels wrong, it often is and they should tell someone on their Helping Hand.
Everyone at Cumnor House School for Girls was very welcoming and seemed to take on board all the messages about the training. We’re looking forward to visiting later in the year to see how the programme is going and also to talk to parents about the programme and what value it can bring to their children.
“It was a fantastic to get such a great reception from teachers and pastoral care staff at Cumnor House School. All the staff are enthusiastic about starting the programme and seeing how the children engage with Dot Com and her friends. It was particularly beneficial to have the Designated Safeguarding Lead and the Head Teachers support the staff at the training and I was very pleased that they both identified that teaching the Dot Com programme will give children a voice as well as meet all the requirements of the local authority safeguarding audit.”
Sharon Evans – CEO, Dot Com Children’s Foundation
These training sessions are available to ALL schools who purchase the Dot Com programme and are delivered absolutely free of charge. Schools do not have to take the training but we would thoroughly recommend scheduling the training for as many of your teachers, teaching assistants and other student facing staff as possible, as it does ensure as a number of schools have said, ‘that everyone is singing from the same book’.
If you want to find out more about what the Dot Com programme can do for your school, please do have a look at our latest Education Information Pack and please do not hesitate to contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions at all.