A message from your Learning Mentors 

Portsdown Primary school currently employs two Learning Mentors; Mrs Blades and Mrs Jordan.

Our role is to ‘Remove the barriers to learning’ which prevent a child from reaching their full potential. 

We support all our pupils, however, there are times when some of our pupils may find their friendships, confidence, emotions, feelings or behaviour overwhelming.

Through discussions with staff, parents and the pupil, we will develop a bespoke service to meet each child’s individual needs.

This support can be provided for a specific amount of time or on-going throughout a child’s time with us and can be delivered through 1:1 support, group work outside of the classroom as well as in-class support. 

We believe in building strong honest relationships with our pupils and our parents.

We also run after school clubs that encourage confidence and self esteem which in turn helps to build friendships.

If you would like any more information, advice or simply a chat please feel free to come and talk to us.

Mrs Blades and Mrs Jordan.

Or contact us via our emails:




We have both completed the following training;

Accredited Learning Mentor training.

Foundation degree in Learning Support

 Emotional First Aid,

Emotional Coaching,

Emotional literacy

Restorative Practices and

Team Teach.

 Mrs. Blades is trained in Loss Companions this enables her to help  and support our children and family’s through their bereavement. Loss can come in many forms for example; death of a loved one, family pets, divorce, moving home and moving to a new school. Mrs. Blades is Youth Mental Health First Aid Champion for the school.

If you would like any more information please contact Mrs. Blades.


Some Wellbeing Tips from us to you

Mrs Blades and Mrs Jordan would like to talk about the importance of sleep

We all know how much better we feel after a good night’s sleep refreshed, happy and ready for the day ahead.

Sometimes, getting to sleep is not easy for both children and adults.

So we wondered if it might help to have a Portsdown bedtime routine

A regular bedtime.

Mrs Jordan believes in a regular bedtime routine. She likes to go to bed at about the same time each night (except for News Year Eve when she likes to say


A regular bedtime routine encourages a good sleep pattern.

So what is a good bedtime routine?

Starting to wind the day down at a set time each day:

Bath and story for younger children.

Bath and quiet chat with you about their day for older children before they settle in their bed for some alone time before lights out.

 Ideas to relax before bedtime

Mrs Blades enjoys relaxing before going to bed and she has a nice cuddle and chat with her dog Indie about her day.

Older children might wind down by reading a book, listening to music or practising breathing for relaxation.

Top tip:

Have a regular bedtime routine.

 Keep older children’s naps early and short

Mrs Blades loves to have a nap during the day but she finds it difficult at work!

Mrs Blades also knows that if she does sneak a nap (without Mr Vaghela noticing) she will find it hard to sleep that night. 

Most children stop napping around 3-5 years of age. Some children over the age of 5 still like a nap but it is best to keep the nap to about 20 minutes and no later than early afternoon. As later naps can make it harder for children to sleep at night.

 Make sure your child feels safe at night.

Mrs Jordan feels safe when she goes to bed because she sleeps with all her teddies.  She also has her night light on to help her feel safe.

Sometimes, children feel scared about going to bed or being in the dark, praising your child and using a reward chart can help them feel brave. 

Top tips:

Avoiding scary movies and computer games before bedtime.

Check noise and light in your child’s bedroom

Mrs Jordan finds it difficult to sleep if her computer screen is still on as it has a blue light.  She also has nice thick curtains so the street light outside doesn’t keep her awake.

Blue light from the computer screen, television, phones and tablets suppress melatonin levels which delays sleepiness.

Here are a couple of our top tips for sleeping.

  • turn off devices at least one hour before bedtime
  • keep screens out of your child’s room at night
  • dim the lights an hour before bed for children of preschool age and younger.

If your child uses a night-light, choose a dim, warm-coloured globe, rather than a bright, white, cool-coloured globe.

Avoid the clock

Sometimes, Mrs Blades lays in bed looking at her clock- this is not good because she is very ratty if she does not get enough sleep

Top tip:
If your child is checking the time often, encourage your child to move the clock or watch to a spot where they can’t see it from their bed.

Get plenty of natural light in the day

Mrs Blades and Mrs Jordan  love being outside as much as possible during the day. They know that regular exercise is a great way of having fun and helping them sleep at night.

Top tip:
Encourage your child to get as much natural light as possible during the day, especially in the morning. Bright light suppresses melatonin. This helps your child feel awake and alert during the day and sleepy towards bedtime.

 Avoid caffeine

Mrs Blades and Mrs Jordan know that caffeine is in lots of different drinks- coffee, tea, and cola.

Top tip:

Try to avoid allowing your child to drink any of these drinks late afternoon and evening.

Mrs Blades and Mrs Jordan would like to share some tips that they use to help when they feel Anxious.

1) Mrs Jordan enjoys phoning her friend to have a chat to help her calm down.

2) Mrs Blades likes to go for walks with her dog Indie to help her calm down.

3) The Worry Tree, we love this resource and use this a lot.

4) Star breathing, you will often see us taking deep breaths in and out to help calm us down.

5) We go outside and blow bubbles or we pretend to blow bubbles- this helps us to concentrate on our breathing and calm down.

Another good tip is to think of a happy place or draw your happy place. When you do this it is a good idea to use you’re 5 Senses 

What can I SEE- clouds, trees, colours, flowers, my toys 

What can I HEAR- wind, rain, birds, traffic, voices, music 

What can I SMELL- flowers, food, perfume.

What can I TOUCH- wall, sofa, chair, bed, toys.

What can I TASTE- my favourite food