Essential Listening Skills for Busy School Staff: What to Say When You Don’t Know What to Say

We’re delighted to have partnered up with our friends at Jessica Kingsley Publishers to run a fantastic competition to celebrate National Reading Month! Each week, we’ll feature a blog on three topical education books on our website (provided by Jessica Kingsley Publishers)

At the end of the month, we’ll be entering one lucky person the chance to win ALL of the books we feature. The winner will be announced on Day 2 of The Schools & Academies Show, ExCeL, London 3-4 April.

Tickets are free of charge – register for yours here

­Nick Luxmoore

You are already late for a meeting, but you are in your classroom with a girl who is so angry she is ready to hit someone. It’s the end of the school day and your need to leave to pick you’re your daughter from the childminder, but a boy has told you that he feels like giving up altogether.  Listening is core to the relationships which make a school tick, make a job fulfilling and make a difference to the pupils you teach. However, often it feels like there isn’t enough time to listen and quite often, once you have, you find yourself unsure about how to respond. Nick Luxmoore, counsellor trainer, former teacher and youth worker, and author of 10 books including The Art of Working with Anxious, Antagonistic Adolescents (JKP, April 2019) offers practical realistic advice on listening to pupils, colleagues and parents.

“One of the things I love most about this book is that it doesn’t feel daunting at all. One of the big issues that staff raise with me when I talk about the importance of listening and enabling young people to feel heard is the issue of time. How will we find time to do all that listening when we’re already overstretched and overworked? 

It’s a good question – and the answer is that it’s about quality rather than quantity and this book is just the same.

Many staff I work with want to support vulnerable pupils but lack the confidence to do so – I think this book will help to bridge the gap and, as its subtitle suggests, help you to know what to say when you don’t know what to say.

I’d recommend this to anyone working with young people (and not just in schools) who wants to improve their ability and capacity to listen in a meaningful way, and especially to those who are anxious about doing or saying the wrong thing. This book is packed with sensible advice, reassurance and ideas.

Pooky Knightsmith,

Link to book:

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