My Life Logo

Dealing with sensitive issues

The case studies, interactive activities and activity sheets on My Life are presented in a highly visual, child-friendly way. Whilst they deal with topics which you may consider sensitive, they do not cover issues such as self-harm, sexual abuse or substance misuse.

Themes children will recognise

The themes of the My Life units will be instantly recognisable to children as they are issues that have a direct impact on their daily lives. There are bound to be children in your class or elsewhere in the school who have direct experience of bullying, racial intolerance, difficult home circumstances, learning difficulties and so on. You are in the best place to assess how such individuals will react to the activities suggested in My Life but the advice below may be helpful.

Advice on tackling sensitive subjects

  1. Best practice suggests that children affected by a particular issue should not be excluded from activities relating to this issue.
  2. Ensure that the children are fully supported by adults - or through peer mentoring programmes - in dealing with their concerns and emotional well-being.
  3. We recommend that you begin the lesson by telling children that you will make yourself available at the end of the lesson or a later time if they want to speak to you individually about anything you talk about in the lesson. This might be because they themselves are in a difficult situation, or because they think the issues covered affect someone they know.
  4. If you become seriously concerned about individual children you should express your concerns immediately to a senior manager and follow school policy guidelines on child protection.
  5. In the section Useful links, you'll find contact details for several organisations that can offer specialist support.