Meet our Emotional Literacy Support Advisor

“Hello and Welcome to our ELSA page. My name is Mrs Paula Jackson and I am Gilbrook School’s ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Advisor).
On this page you will find some useful information about ELSA. Please free to contact me during school hours for any further information.”

What is an ELSA?

ELSA is a specialist teaching assistant with a wealth of experience of working with children. ELSAs are trained and regularly supervised by the Educational Psychologists in your Local education authority. Children are usually referred for ELSA support by their class teacher. ELSA’s are trained to plan and provide a series of bespoke 1:1 or group support sessions to support children in developing new skills that help them to recognise and manage their social and emotional needs more effectively. Sessions are fun and involve a range of activities such as puppets, Arts and Crafts, games, sensory/therapeutic play and relaxation activities.


What can ELSA’S help with?

  • Loss and bereavement
  • Self-esteem
  • Social skills
  • Feelings/Emotions
  • Friendships
  • Empathy
  • Relationships
  • Anger management
  • Behaviour
  • Anxiety
  • Bullying
  • Conflict
  • Relaxation techniques

Supporting – Not Fixing.

Remember, ELSA is not here to fix children’s problems. What we can do is provide emotional support.

It is unrealistic to expect ELSA intervention to resolve all their difficulties. However support will be designed to target specific aspects of a child’s needs.

We aim to create a warm, caring and respectful relationship with a child, and to provide a safe space where thoughts and feelings can be shared and explored and strategies and skills learnt and practised to manage their needs.


What do the children think?


-ELSA makes me feel confident about friendships and trust. I feel happy now because of ELSA. (LMH,).

-ELSA has helped me to understand my feelings. (VM,).

-I can talk about my worries now. (KP,)

-I like playing games, it’s good fun. (OB)


Pictures of ELSA Sessions:


Useful links: