The Choices Programme at Dashwood
Lime – The Choice’s Programme
At Dashwood Banbury Academy, we deliver The Choices Programme to our pupils in Year 5 and Year 6.
Why do we choose to partner with Lime and deliver their programme?
Through our collaborative work within the SCIB (Safeguarding Children In Banbury) partnership, we are aware of the local issues that our pupils may be affected by. Today’s young people face more significant challenges to their futures than ever before. We choose to deliver The Choices Programme because of Lime’s ongoing research that suggests several core issues that significantly contribute to young people’s challenges:
Displacement of the family as the primary source of values, care and stability
A rapidly changing society provides the backdrop for a notable break with the past we have known. Changing working practices mean parents and carers spend fewer hours at home, families break down with increasing frequency, and the never-ending choice of fast food and even faster media leaves little room for traditional ‘family time’. This reduction in emotional contact time has caused an ‘affection deficit’ for modern youth, driving young people to seek affection elsewhere, in far less safe places, trading it for choices that bring much greater risk.
Healthy adolescent development involves seeking out risk.
Numerous factors during adolescence may lead young people to favour behaviours deemed antisocial, such as sensation-seeking, gregariousness and social conformity.
Greater importance is placed on peer relationships over familial ones
Social and emotional maturity are intertwined. Therefore, as maturity increases, a young person’s relationships with peers change. They become more vulnerable and emotionally intimate with their peers, requiring more significant levels of trust. Thus, during the adolescent years, peer groups become increasingly crucial as teens experience more closeness in these friendships and more gratifying relationships with their peers as a result. Teens now turn to one another instead of their families. Peer groups become the first line of support during times of worry or upset. An accelerating digitalisation of childhood has severe and potentially harmful side effects.
The Choices Programme follows a collaborative design process that puts young people at the heart of the solution, identifying several factors that are critical to this process:
- Understanding how identity forms, especially their own, and its essential components and
- Knowing how choices are determined, particularly in social situations, provides a framework
for decision-making that includes practical strategies to effectively manage events in their
- Providing an insight into the basic psychological needs that drive our actions and the
consequences that subsequently lead from this.
- Developing an environment through shared experiences and consensus to enable the co-
creation of strategies and provide suitable opportunities to practice those strategies within a
space deemed to be ‘safe’.
Through delivery of the programme, we know that our Dashwood pupils will have opportunity to discuss different social situations and learn how to make appropriate decisions and devise their own strategies to keep themselves safe now, and in their future. The programme better prepares our pupils for their transition to secondary school where they will experience greater independence and, what comes with this, an exposure to a variety of more challenging situations and experiences.
Find out more about The Choices Programme at: https://www.engagelime.com/projects/the-