• Overview

    Kathy Sheehan
    Who is this for?
    Preschool - Year 2 students and their Teachers or Allied Health Workers
    Who is this from?
    Early Childhood Educators and staff Primary School Teachers and staff Allied Health professionals
    Mentally Healthy Communities, Learning Resilience
    Early Learning, Primary School, Secondary School
    Self esteem and body image, General mental wellbeing, Connectedness and relationships, Social and emotional learning
    The Sparky and Shady for Kids program aims: 1. To provide a framework for children to understand their 'loving' and 'scared' sides so they are empowered to meet their needs in positive ways; 2. To give children knowledge, understanding and strategies to manage their body, personality, thoughts, feelings and behaviours; 3. To give children strategies to cope with problems such as bullying, anxiety and other challenges they may face; and 4. To empower children with the confidence they need to believe in themselves, and be themselves.
    The 'Sparky and Shady for Kids - How to love and understand yourself in nine days' book costs $29.95 (plus $5.00 delivery) and is available from the website. An ebook version is also available from the website for $14.95. The 'Sparky and Shady for Kids Teachers' Manual - Small group program for schools Preschool - Year 2' book costs $44.95 (plus $5.00 delivery) and is available from the website. An ebook version is also available from the website for $24.95.
    Victoria, New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory, Queensland, Northern Territory, South Australia, Western Australia, Tasmania
    Sparky and Shady
    5 Harbour Drive, Coffs Harbour, NSW, 2450
    Mobile number
    0409 711 608
  • Implementation

    Detailed description

    The Sparky and Shady for Kids book includes nine chapters that guides kids to explore how their body, personality, thoughts and feelings all work together and how to repair themselves physically, socially, mentally and emotionally when something goes wrong. The book comes with teacher resources that include lesson plans and curriculum outcomes to guide teaching. The chapter titles and summaries are given below: 1. Who you are - At the end of this chapter students will be able to: * Imagine the 'loving' part of them (Sparky) and the 'scared' part of them (Shady). * Recall a time when Shady kept them safe. * Remember a time when Shady told them to do something 'naughty'. 2. Why you are here - At the end of this chapter students will be able to: * Give an example of a time they made a difference to others or nature. * Give an example of a time they learnt from a mistake. 3. How your body works - At the end of this chapter students will be able to: * Give examples of what their body needs to be healthy and happy. * State that their body does not need junk food. 4. How your personality works - At the end of this chapter students will be able to: * State that their personality is the part of them that gets to choose. * Tell you what they can do to have a more 'Sparky' personality. 5. How your thoughts work - At the end of this chapter students will be able to: * Recognise thoughts from Sparky and Shady in their imagination. * Recall that when they listen to Sparky they are on the 'high road'. When they listen to Shady they are on the 'low road'. * Explain that baggage is where you believe something from Shady that isn't helping you. 6. How your feelings work - At the end of this chapter students will be able to: * Recognise that feeling bad is a signal that their body needs something or that they are thinking a thought from Shady. * Repeat the 'Feeling Rules' (see pg 37 of kids book) * Explain why bottling up feelings is unhealthy. 7. How to cope with problems - At the end of this chapter students will be able to: * Practice a Body short cut, a Shady short cut and a Sparky short cut. * Recall the actions in a Pit Stop: Hand - Stop, Thumb - What am I feeling?, Pointer - Is my body okay?, Tall finger - What's wrong?, Ring finger - What now?, Little finger - Let go. 8. How to believe in yourself - At the end of this chapter students will be able to: * Agree that they are here to make a difference on earth. * State that loving Shady, trusting Sparky and letting go of shady thoughts and feelings helps them believe in themselves. * Explain why Shady can't be trusted. * Explain why Sparky can be trusted. * Give an example of how to let go of shady thoughts and feelings. 9. How to follow your dreams - At the end of this chapter students will be able to: * Name one or two things they love doing that make them happy. * Tell you why Shady doesn't want them to follow their dreams. * State that they can follow their dreams if they Love Shady, Trust Sparky and Let go of baggage.

    Program structure & method delivery

    There are nine chapters in the book 'Sparky and Shady for Kids' as listed above. The program was specifically written for a small group being withdrawn from a classroom by a support teacher. Each chapter of the program has been divided into two lessons of 20 minutes. The first lesson introduces everyone to the main concept for that chapter. This may be enough for children in Preschool and Kindergarten. The second lesson goes a bit more in depth and is intended for children in Years 1 and 2. If teachers think their Preschool or Kindergarten group are ready for this lesson they can deliver the second lesson to their class. It is assumed the teacher will have the group once a week if teaching the first lesson only and twice a week if teaching both lessons in each chapter. The program runs for 9 weeks. The general idea is this: in each lesson the teacher reads the appropriate section of the chapter in 'Sparky and Shady for Kids' to the group; then discusses the content before encouraging the children to complete a 'Follow-up' drawing to reinforce learning. The program is suitable for children from a wide variety of family backgrounds, including those with social, cultural and economic challenges. Teacher Involvement: 1. In the week prior to teaching the program it is suggested that you: * Watch the teachers' information video to get an overview of the program: sparkyandshady.com/kids-teachers-information * Read the book 'Sparky and Shady for Kids - How to love and understand yourself in nine days!' * Send home the parent note with website links to the parent information video * If teaching younger students, decide if you are going to teach both lessons in each chapter or the first lesson only (or a bit of both) * Source a scrapbook or presentation folder with plastic sleeves for each child taking part in the program. 2. Before each lesson (5-10mins): * Read the teachers' notes for the relevant lesson * Think about a suitable follow-up drawing (choose from suggested ideas or create your own) * Photocopy the appropriate summary page for each child (either 'Chapter summary' or '1st section summary'). Cut the page in half (there are two summaries per page), send one summary home with each child and glue the other in scrapbooks or place in plastic sleeve folders. 3. During the lesson: * Review past lesson(s) briefly by looking through past drawings, reading the previous summary or revisiting the book with children * Read the relevant section of the chapter in 'Sparky and Shady for Kids' out loud to the children for that lesson's content * Discuss important concepts with students * Decide on the best follow-up drawing and help children complete this * At the end of every chapter (or section) send one chapter summary home and glue the other in children's scrap books or place in plastic sleeve folders * Retain children's scrapbooks or folders ready for the next lesson * Send any teacher, child or parent questions (which may have been returned by parents on the chapter summary sheet) to: questions@sparkyandshady.com - these will be answered by email and if appropriate placed on the FAQ page. 4. Suggestions for when students are away: * If possible (and timetabling allows) try to catch students up by withdrawing them one on one from class and reading them the relevant section from the chapter they missed prior to the next lesson * Alternatively do a quick revision of last lesson's content at the start of each lesson * Place chapter summary (or section summary) sheets in children's scrapbooks or folders with a short comment to parents that their child missed that particular lesson. 5. At the completion of the program: * Photocopy children's work for school files if required * Send home each child's scrapbook or plastic sleeve folder so children can share their follow-up work and chapter summaries with parents. An important note for teachers: For each lesson, the introduction, discussion and follow-up ideas in the teachers' notes, are all suggestions. As you are the teacher, please follow your instincts or intuition and adapt the teaching content to best suit the needs of the children.

    Student assessment measures


    Professional learning compulsory


  • Evidence

    Identified theoretical framework

    Theoretical underpinnings of the Sparky and Shady for Kids program are: * Humanist Psychology * Psychodynamic Psychology * Cognitivist Psychology
  • Authors


    Kathy Sheehan

    About author(s)

    Kathy has over 20 years' experience as a behaviour consultant, a class teacher, an assistant principal and an acting principal. Kathy has taught in public, private, faith-based and alternative schools working with children aged 5 to 18. A serious accident at 22 sparked Kathy's passion and relentless research to find a way to help kids cope with problems and believe in themselves. Her 'Sparky and Shady' program and series of books is the result.