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Notes To Self: Film and Teaching pack


Notes To Self

About this resource

Notes To Self

The film and it's supporting resources seek to challenge the myths and misinformation that surround mental health and well-being. The film also stresses the importance of early intervention by professionals when young people are having difficulties, and to this end contains several scenarios in which we see young people talking to experienced workers. It asks: When do the everyday stresses and ups and downs of teenage behaviour become a mental health issue? How do you keep yourself mentally well? How can you help a friend in need?


Notes to Self aims to equip young people with strategies to help keep themselves emotionally healthy, to guide them on seeking help and supporting others, and to encourage them to challenge stigma around mental health issues.


The drama begins with a production team of young people who are holed up in a school hall and need to make a film about mental well-being in 24 hours! The film-within-a-film they deliver is a visually striking and emotional story of a popular member of the class who cannot share his concerns with friends or family. Notes appear expressing his deepest anxieties. He doesn’t know where to turn and things come to a head in a remarkable climax, which happily sees him getting professional help. While this story unfolds, the team continue their research, interviewing a mental health professional. They also create their own humorous ‘Five Helpful Hints to Well-Being.’

Before you use this resource please read the Guidance.

Measuring and monitoring children and young people’s mental well-being toolkit

On World Mental Health Day (10th October 2016), children’s mental health charity Anna Freud have published a mental health indicators toolkit for schools. This work was commissioned by PHE and will be of interest to senior leadership teams and those with particular responsibilities for Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), inclusion, Personal Social Health and Economic education (PSHE), welfare or pastoral support and mental health support. The toolkit helps schools and colleges think through why and how they might choose to measure student mental wellbeing. It also advises on how schools can make use of a range of validated survey questions and instruments that can help them to do this.

Top Tips

Sallyann Sutton

  • It is important agree some ground rules with young people at the beginning of the session and display them in the room. I would be asking young people not to share their own personal information in the sessions. You can draw pupils back to the ground rules if they start to make personal disclosures.
  • Mental health can be a sensitive subject and there is a high chance that there will be pupils in your class affected by mental health problems, either themselves, having a parent or other family member with mental health problems or a friend. The sign-posting information in the teaching resource can be printed off to give to pupils, providing them with information on sources of help should they want further support or advice. Or go to sign-posting.
  • The film is divided into sections, this allows you to show the drama all the way through but then go back and access short clips. This is ideal when you want to revisit specific areas such as ‘five helpful hints to well-being for teenagers.’
  • This resource provides schemes of work in 3 themes areas and has links to other resources. There is clear guidance in the sign-posting and teaching resource on how to use the film in a programme of work so that it is flexible to use in your school.
  • If you feel that you would like some more information about mental health and well-being then there are some references for background reading in the sign-posting and teaching resource.


If your school or group need some further support to deliver the resource then contact the Young People’s Health Advisor for Emotional Health: Training or co-facilitating sessions could be an option.

Notes to Self is a Catcher Media presentation for NHS Walsall. Managed by Walsall Council Creative Development Team.

Other related resources (Walsall only)


Team Toolbox
This toolbox provides a sustainable resource to promote ‘social & emotional’ development and physical activity. Team toolbox contains all the equipment you need to run sessions for as few as 3-4 pupils and for larger groups of up to 100. There are 80 activities which can be used in structured sessions, including warm ups, challenge activities, review tasks and feedback activities.

Ideal for use in KS2-4 (ages 8-18 years) PE lessons, PSHE lessons and Curriculum days.

Getting the Lowdown

‘Getting the Lowdown’ is a teaching resource designed to equip teachers and facilitators with the tools they need to effectively educate and engage young people around issues of mental health and emotional well-being.

This resource contains eleven separate lessons (five for Primary School, six for Secondary School) that each feature broadcast standard short films, lessons plans written by a SEAL Coordinator, background reading documents written by health consultants and in-depth materials provided by leading health organisations.

Produced using the latest evidence-based research and having received a very positive external evaluation by independent health consultants, ‘Getting the Lowdown’ is being used by many local authorities across the country to mainstream and sustain services, whilst cutting costs.

Wheel Of Well-being

A DVD resource which is designed as a game show. A character introduces different areas of well-being and then the class teacher can select a variety of creative activities that pupils can work through as a class group or in small groups. It is flexible can be used in short bursts or to fill full lessons. It lends itself to cross curriculum use. The resources was produced after consultation with pupils in a Walsall Primary and Secondary school. It is suitable for KS2 and KS3 and is ideal to support transition.

All the DVD resources above are freely available to staff in Walsall by contacting Sallyann Sutton

The 'Team Toolbox' can be hired free of charge from Sallyann Sutton but staff would first need to have a familiarisation session to use resource. This is usually done by running an INSET session or delivering a session in the school which a teacher supports.

Secondary, Key Stage 3 - 5


Academic pressure
Alcohol and drugs (discreet reference)
Support from friends, adults and professionals
Helpful well-being tips
Recognising symptoms
When to seek professional help
Visiting a health professional




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To download the windows version right click and choose "Save target as" or "Save as"


22 mins