5 Children’s Books That Teach Valuable Lessons About Feelings and Mental Health

We like to reassure children and tell them everything is fine. Although this is a quick fix, it doesn’t help the child understand their emotions and process their feelings. With this in mind, there has been a powerful movement aimed at discussing and conquering mental health issues through children’s books. Matt Haig, author of The Truth Pixie (a book aimed at tackling childhood anxiety) explains that “constantly reassuring children that everything is fine is short-sighted [and] it doesn’t help them to develop coping strategies and mental resilience”.

Children’s books have always taught valuable lessons. The imaginative illustrations and moral messages inform children and help them understand the world around them. The following stories are an asset to the book printing world, as they all tackle these sensitive issues.

Don’t Feed the WorryBug, written and illustrated by Andi Green

This picture book, brought to us by Andi Green, talks about all types of worries and how easily they can grow into anxiety. The story follows Wince, a little monster who’s worries keep amounting. From “did he feed his fish, Ted?”, to “Would he get a good grade?”, Wince simply can’t stop worrying. After meeting the WorryBug, Wince realises that the bug feeds off his worries. The more he worries, the bigger the WorryBug grows, until its buzzing keeps Wince awake at night and makes him feel anxious all of the time. In the end Wince reaches out to friends and the WorryBug experts, for help. They all come together to show the WorryBug the door and stop Wince’s worries from amounting.

This book does a fantastic job of helping children cope with fear, anxiety, and worry. It perfectly illustrates how small concerns can pile up and become overwhelming. Not only is this message important to help children feel less alone in their worries, but it also encourages asking for help as a solution.

Chrysanthemum, written and illustrated by Kevin Henkes

A story to teach children about bullying and belonging, Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes tells us that it’s ok to stand out and be different. The classic picture book revolves around Chrysanthemum, a young mouse who loves her long and beautiful name. Chrysanthemum’s classmates however, bully her about her name and knock her confidence. A kind, pregnant teacher, Mrs Delphinium Twinkle, eventually sees what’s happening and steps in. She reassures Chrysanthemum that her name is beautiful and that she should feel confident. When Mrs Delphinium Twinkle has her baby at the end of the story, she decides to name it Chrysanthemum, too.

This tale teaches tolerance and acceptance. It also aims to make children feel less isolated and worried just because they’re a little different to those around them — a valuable lesson to take into later life.

Feelings: My Many Colored Days, written by Dr Seuss, illustrated by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher

My Many Colored Days, is an abstract picture book that has a very different look to the more famous Dr Seuss stories. Bold and bright shapes accompany the words, rather than Seuss’ iconic cartoons. This delightful book takes its readers through all sorts of colours and emotions. It delicately illustrates that not all days are sunny yellow days, nor are they all doomed to be grey and stormy. The idea is simple, yet effective, reminding children (and adults) that it is okay to feel a spectrum of emotions.

When Dinosaurs Die: A Guide to Understanding Death, written and illustrated by Laurie Krasny Brown and Marc Brown

Death, and the difficult emotions attached to it, is a hard subject to broach. However, it is essential that children have some understanding of death and what it might mean, so that they are able to process the emotions healthily in real life scenarios. When Dinosaurs Die: A Guide to Understanding Death, does an impressive job of addressing this heart-wrenching topic. When faced with a death in the family, the dinosaur family comes together to grieve. The Browns are careful to leave room for individual interpretations and feelings in their story, with no prescribed reactions. This book teaches children that “there is no right or wrong way to feel” and prompts young readers to ask their parents questions about the daunting subject.

The Bear Who Stared by Duncan Beedie

Shortlisted for the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize in 2017, Duncan Beedie’s picture book educates children about social anxiety and feeling too shy to interact with others. As many children struggle with shyness, books like this one are vital to encourage children to come out of their shell and make friends.

The story revolves around a bear named Bear who likes to stare. Although he isn’t trying to be rude, this staring sometimes gets him in trouble. After struggling to make friends due to his shyness, a friendly frog comes along teaches Bear that a smile can go a long way. Thanks to the helpful frog, and a smile or two, Bear begin to make friends.


All of these stories do a great service to young children. Childhood can be a difficult time and pretending everything okay isn’t enough to help children’s healthy emotional development. By teaching children that it’s okay to feel all kind of ways, these stories offer a narrative in which children won’t feel as isolated and worried about what’s going on in their heads.


Article provided by Where The Trade Buys, UK based business card printers.












Does your school or college have enough exam desks for your students …….? 

Exams aren’t far away and it’s perhaps easy to assume that there will be enough exam desks for all  students….. but suppose this isn’t the case….

It’s might be worth checking the stock of exam desks well before the exams are due to start, just to make sure there’s enough to go round.

Central Educational Supplies Ltd have been supplying exam desks (as well as other educational furniture) since 2004 and can often supply at very short notice…sometimes  just two or three working days.

Why not contact them now to see how they may be able to help with your exam preparations?

Central Educational Supplies Ltd can be contacted by:

email: info@centraleducational.co.uk

phone: 020 7515 1797

or visit the website: www.centraleducational.co.uk

Central Educational Supplies Ltd.,  PO Box 999  London  E14 6SH

What’s a simple way to encourage and motivate your students?   

Almost everyone likes to be recognised..… whether it’s in the form of a bonus payment, long service award or just an occasional “well done.”

Interestingly I once read an article which stated that most employees respond best when they are thanked for their efforts or praised for their contribution to the organisation they work for……rather than being given money.  When praise is combined with even a small gift then this becomes a great motivator and is likely to increase their loyalty and commitment.

Sadly, it seems that many large firms take their staff for granted and seem oblivious to the fact that without their (often) hard working staff their business would not exist.

If you’ve ever watched the programme “Undercover Boss”  you’ll know what I mean.  All too often the boss of the company is out of touch with his staff, his stores, and what goes on in them……In fact all too often it seems that lowly paid staff are better able to run the stores than the CEO himself (or herself). 

So, what has this got to do with student behaviour, effort and recognition? 

Well, there’s a  product which has just become available in the UK. It’s simple, it’s basic, it’s low cost, but as well as being very useful for students I think it could also be a great motivator.

It’s called the “Student Study Set”  and contains all that a student needs for most of their lessons.

Consisting of four full length HB pencils, four black ink pens, two quality erasers and two sharpeners and a 15 cm ruler …all contained in  an “exam friendly” clear PVC pencil case with a traditional zip closure and sewn sides for strength. From just £1.35 ex vat it could be an ideal gift for use as an incentive, a prize or perhaps given to all students at the start of a new term.

The “Student Study Set” can be ordered from:

Signpost Educational Ltd.,   PO Box 999,   London  E14 6SH      Tel:  020 7515 1797

email:  signpost@talk21.com    website:  www.signposteducational.co.uk

PS.  Orders are usually delivered within 1-3 working  days

English Literature Summer School 2020

A wonderful opportunity for students aged 15-18 with a passion for literature to discover a range of new authors and texts, explore fresh approaches to familiar works and to prepare for undergraduate study of English Literature.

 “I absolutely adored the summer school – it was completely inspiring and I enjoyed every second of it! I would have done the week over and over! I would recommend to anyone interested in literature, no matter whether experienced or not because you will, without a doubt, come away from the course with a passion for literature that will never leave you!”

The English Literature Summer School – Part 1 will cover literature dating from 650AD to 1790AD, including Middle English, Medieval Literature, Chaucer, The Renaissance, Shakespeare, Restoration Literature and the Rise of the Novel. In addition we will also be covering Historicist and Feminist critical approaches as part of this Summer School.

The English Summer School – Part 1 will be held on the 20th – 24th July – you can see a schedule for the course here. 

The English Literature Summer School – Part 2 will cover literature dating from 1790AD to the present day, including Romanticism and the Gothic Movement, Victorian Sensation Novels, Literature and the British Empire, Modernism, Postmoderism and Contemporary Literature. We will be covering the ‘Death of the Author’ and Postcolonial criticism as part of this Summer School.

The English Summer School – Part 2 will be held on the 27th – 31st July – you can see a schedule for the course here. 

Please note that students can attend both Parts of the Summer School, or either one, depending on their literary interests. Although the courses complement one another, they can also be treated as stand alone events and there is no requirement to have attended Part 1 in order to register for Part 2.

The material will be challenging, about the level of difficulty one might expect in the first year at university, but a relaxed atmosphere, with plenty of discussion, debate, and opportunities for students to shape the direction of classes creates the perfect environment for getting to grips with new ideas. Working in small groups (usually around 12 students per class) over five days means a real chance to get to know tutors and fellow students and to explore the topics or questions that particularly interest each individual.

This Summer School is suitable for all students aged 15-18 with a love for literature!

“The Summer School was really fantastic. I had the chance to explore Old English which I was interested in, but had not fully explored. I now have so many ideas and further reading lists to look at especially for my personal statement which is very helpful indeed. The tutors are all experts in their fields and create an engaging, challenging environment. Highly recommend.”

“This was the second time I had done a Debate Chamber course, and it was just as good as the first. I really love the sequential nature of the English course, especially as it helps so much in placing texts in their historical and inter textual contexts. I particularly enjoyed the Measure for Measure session because we were able to all explore many of the problems and themes in the play in a very liberating and intense way. I loved the debates that were generated. I also really enjoyed the Anglo-Saxon session because it was an introduction to something I had never covered before, and which also introduced me to some excellent early feminist writers (Margery Kempe!). Every day I came home absolutely buzzing and it really helped cement my desire to take English Literature at university. Thank you so much to all the tutors and the rest of my group for making this week a brilliant and memorable experience.” 

Read more reviews from previous English Literature Summer School students here. 

Practical Details:

All the Summer School events will be held at Student Central, University of London in Bloomsbury, Central London, and will take place in July and August 2020. Please note that these courses are not residential, and accommodation must be arranged independently if required.

You can find full details of schedules, dates, costs, student reviews and tutors at https://debatechamber.com/project/english-literature-summer-school/. Please note that there is a limited amount of bursary funding available for students who would otherwise have financial difficulty in attending.

To book a place please visit http://www.debatechamber.com/, call us on 0800 810 1058, or email info@debatechamber.com. Places will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.

What can the maths department do if its favourite calculator is no longer available?  

The Casio FX 83 GT+ was the UK’s best selling scientific calc for many years……and deservedly so.  It set the pace in many UK schools & colleges and was the first choice for GCSE exams for many schools.

However it was discontinued in 2019 and replaced by an upgraded spec’ model at a higher price. Top grade maths students are likely to benefit from this new model (FX 83GTX), but what about the majority for whom the FX 83GT+ was perfectly adequate and available at a reasonable price?

Well, the news is positive.  There is an alternative……                                                 

It’s the Logik LK 83XP which has a similar keyboard and almost all the features of the FX 83GT Plus but with one big advantage…… it’s dual power.  This combination of battery and solar power  prolongs battery life and gives students extra reassurance, especially when used in exams.

The LK 83XP has a THREE year guarantee and is suitable for all exams where a calculator is allowed.  Features include: 252 functions,   “natural (textbook) display,” check, correct and replay, stats calculations, prime factorisation etc, hard plastic keys, slide on case etc.

It’s a calc which can see your students all the way from year 7 to GCSE and scottish exams and at a surprisingly modest price.  From £5.48 ex vat.  Also available in a class set of 30 calcs in a Gratnells storage box with foam insert and lid for just £172.60 ex vat.

Further details on:   www.signposteducational.co.uk or phone 020 7515 1797  or email: signpost@talk21.com

Signpost Educational Ltd., PO Box 999   London  E14 6SH 

PS.  Your order will usually be delivered within 1-3 working days.