Weekly meeting topics
Rainbows groups meet over a 12-14 week period and the following topics are covered:
Week 1 – One of a Kind, Me – Myself
Children need to understand they are important and and special
Week 2 – Inside Out, Feelings
Children need to know that we all have feelings, that they are natural and part of who they are. Feelings are neither right nor wrong, they just are
Week 3 – Why my Family? Blame, Guilt, Shame
Children need to be able to talk about their feelings without fear of upsetting close family. Children often blame themselves. They need to understand that the loss is not their fault
Week 4 – Making the pieces fit, Coping Skills
It is important for children to understand that change can be difficult and that confusion, fear and worries are natural
Week 5 – Blow ups and let downs, Anger and Hurt, Coping Skills
Children need to understand that sometimes, it is normal to be angry. Anger needs to be expressed in an appropriate way
Week 6 – Facing fears and worries, Anger and Hurt
Children need to be assisted to talk about their fears and worries. Note – Some programmes have a short Celebrate me Session at this point
Week 7 – We are a family, Families are all different
When a significant change happens in a family, children need to be offered support to understand their new family structure. When the family has changed ,children regularly think they are no longer a family.
Week 8 – Where do I fit in? Belonging, Who am I now?
Children need to be supported to re- establish a sense of security and trust when the family structure changes
Week 9 – The Stepfamily
Stepfamilies may have different concerns, issues, challenges and possibilities. Children need understanding and support to adjust and adapt
Week 10 – Endings and Beginnings
Acceptance, adjustment, adaptation and integration – Change is difficult, goodbyes are hard. Telling and retelling their feelings will support children to begin to adjust and integrate change into their lives
Week 11 – Weathering the storm
Adapting, Integrating to change – Children need to learn new ways of coping that will help them to grow and mature from difficult experiences
Week 12 – Reaching out to others
Living with change, remembering – Group peer support allows children to reach out and identify with others in a similar situation
Final Session – Celebrate me Session
Parent/guardian may be invited. This session reflects on the Rainbows journey and brings that journey to a close. It is not about Letting go! Moving on! Forgiving! A Party!
It is a reflection on the meaning of the programme – learning to integrate significant changes and loss into a life that is seeking to adapt to a life that has changed. It is not forgetting but also remembering within a new context. It is supporting children and young people to make new meanings in their changed world and to face that new life with confidence, self-esteem and resilience!
The final session extends an invitation to return to the programme at another time.