A new film helps children talk about mental health
Mental health is an ever-present issue for much of the UK’s youth and, despite growing support and awareness, is still a problem that requires better solutions. A new animated video, developed by children and teachers working together, aims to help stop this problem. By working in unison and providing a united front, the idea is to help children feel safer and less isolated by mental health illnesses.
A royal introduction - To help provide more awareness and spread the importance, the video features an introduction by none other than The Duchess of Cambridge. For a while now, mental health has been at the forefront of the pursuits by members of the Royal Family, due to personal issues with mental health. The Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families started this new campaign to help tackle mental health and, most importantly, to get young people discussing it and familiar with its repercussions.
Small feelings vs big feelings -To help make the message understandable and relatable, they draw upon what are dubbed 'small feelings' and 'big feelings'. Small feelings include everyday fluctuations in the way we feel, such as being happy, sad or frustrated. In the video, a group of children who share how they deal with these small feelings on their own. Common solutions including having a bath, singing in the shower, or playing video games.
They then go on to discuss 'big feelings' which, are of course, more influential and overwhelming for some students. Again, these feelings and emotions are discussed by children themselves. One student compares these feelings to there being a volcano inside their head that just wants to explode.
Managing to cope -The video emphasises the importance of listening as a means to help support those with poor mental health. If a fellow pupil is suffering from small feelings, then the children themselves suggest talking to their friends and opening up about how they feel.
There is a similarly clear message that, for big feelings, it is best to seek out an adult figure like a parent or teacher. Though these individuals often seem busy or distracted with their own problems, it is important to open up about how you feel in moments like that, rather than letting the volcano erupt.
This touching video is available to watch below and is great for children, regardless of whether mental health difficulties are something they themselves suffer with.