ELSA Stands for:
Emotional Literacy Support Assistant
ELSA is a training course aimed at teaching assistants in schools. Examples of things covered on the course are Social skills, emotions, bereavement, social stories and therapeutic stories, anger management, self-esteem, counselling skills such as solution focused and friendship. To find out about this course it is best to contact the Educational Psychologists in your LEA and ask them if they are running it. If they are not ask them if it is possible for the future. Also check out neighbouring LEAs, they will sometimes take people out of their area to make up numbers. To look at the role in more detail visit the ELSA Network site. The educational psychologist – Sheila Burton is the founder of the ELSA course and this is her website.
My dream is that every teaching assistant is trained as an ELSA in the future. So many children need our help.
A lot of the resources on this website are perfectly suitable for all teaching professionals to use and there is also a parent section with resources suitable for parents to use. If you want any advice on what to order then do not hesitate to contact me through the ‘Contact form‘ I am always willing to help as much as I can. I like to think that this website offers a personal service.
After 12 years working as an ICT technician in a multinational company and 16 working with children in various roles ELSA support was born.
I decided to combine my experience of ICT with my vast experience of working with children to create an Emotional Literacy central resource for ELSAs, Learning support assistants, teaching assistants and teachers.
I am married with two grown up daughters aged 24 and 28 and I have always been passionate about education. Over the years I have taken a particular interest in children with social, emotional and behavioural problems, seeing this as being a real barrier to learning.
I have been HLTA assessed and I trained five years ago to be an ELSA and have loved every minute of it. Seeing children I have worked with blossom in self-esteem, social skills and behaviour. Building those relationships where children can confide in you and being their attachment figure in school.
I have spoken many times on the ELSA course about my work and have presented my website and work on supervision sessions.
I also work as a child mentor to children with social, emotional and behavioural needs and am an educational speaker for the Cat’s Protection charity where I run workshops on animal welfare. I also tutor children after school with phonics and reading.
The website has grown from strength to strength and I have had many emails and messages to tell me how useful it has been to people setting out on the ELSA journey but also helpful to teachers and teaching assistants. I remember finishing my training and thinking ‘now what?’ Trying to put the theory into practice was a real learning journey but one I did get through. I want to share my resources with you so that you are in a position to work as best you can straightaway to help those very important people – the children!
My interventions are ready to go. All you need to do is print them out and deliver the lessons. They do work. My first intervention and the one which I have spoken about many times at the ELSA course is the ‘Friendship and Social Skills’ intervention which runs for 12 weeks for a full afternoon a week. We ran this in a very nurturing way and the successes we had were amazing. If you are starting out on the ELSA journey then this intervention will take you through running a friendship group. My resources are purposefully low cost. The intention is that more of you will buy them and see how wonderful they are and how they work. Resources are so expensive now a days especially resources for social and emotional learning. I like to think you can set yourself up as an ELSA very easily with a combination of free and pay for resources from the site.
I recently developed this NEW ELSA STARTER PACK which will completely set you up with resources that will be very useful to you on your ELSA journey.
I also hope you will subscribe to the newsletter and keep up to date with new items added.
Together we can make a difference.