“I try to spread happiness and kindness wherever I go. If people leave me feeling happier for having met me, then I'm just the happiest mouse ever!”
Hopefully, by now you have met Albert Mouse and Sarah in your local community or at your school. Albert is certainly getting around and meeting lots of people and making friends.
If you want to find out where Albert is - you can check out his Facebook page.
“I think probably kindness is my number one attribute in a human being. I'll put it before any of the things like courage or bravery or generosity or anything else.”
Albert Mouse Esq.
Albert Mouse Esquire first met Sarah at Cherub Cottage in Dartmouth. Sarah noticed a little door with the name ‘Albert’ on the gate and wondered who lived there. She looked up at the bedroom window and there was Albert. They have been best friends ever since
Just ask your teacher or a grown-up to email Sarah and she will sort everything out.
“A kind word is like eating an ice cream or in Big Tony's case, a large pasty.
It is the best thing in the world."
He wears his best clothes and is always clean and tidy. He even wears his favourite cap. Albert is allowed ride in the car, with his seat belt on and he looks out of the window.
He waves to the people he sees. Sometimes the school is far away and to get there, Sarah must drive through country lanes with fields on both sides, where Albert can see sheep and cows.
“Are they happy in those fields eating grass?” he wonders.
When Sarah parks the car at the school, she helps Albert out of the car. Then they make their way to the school office where they must sign in. Albert likes this part because he gets a visitor’s pass that he wears around his neck. It makes him feel very important.
Sometimes Albert has to go to assemblies where all the pupils from the school look at him. This is quite scary for Albert because he is only small and even the children look big to him.
Some days Albert visits children in their classes and has some very interesting chats with them about the subjects they are learning.
Then on very special days he goes into a Nurture Room and feels happy there. They are always warm and have lots of lovely pictures on the walls. Some of them have sensory lights and he gets really dizzy looking up at the ceiling!
In the Nurture Room, Albert gets to sit and listen to children tell him about their day.
Albert also shares his stories with them. He loves to tell them the story about how he and Big Tony captured the smuggler Mickey Mustard and how the Police Officer came to Albert’s home to thank him. Albert tells the children how it is important to have their eyes open at all times and see what is going on around them. Some children are not ready to talk to him, so Albert lets them write him a note which they put into his satchel for him to read later when he gets home.
Sarah sometimes takes Albert to after-school clubs to play games with the children. He enjoys that too.
Yes, Albert likes these school visits very much. He makes lots of new friends which helps some children not feel lonely anymore.
Albert promises he will take Big Tony along to meet the children one day, but his friend is always too busy 'ducking and diving' and looking for free food to be able to go with Albert and Sarah.
Albert is always happy to receive your emails, so drop him a line.
“Kindness begins with understanding that we all struggle."
During lockdown, children became very isolated and insular. Their usual social interaction with peers was no longer an option. Children and young people spent a lot of time inside and were unable to enjoy the company of others. A lot of time was spent online and interacting remotely with their friends. The importance of connections is key.
Sarah can, with Albert's presence, help to support children in their school and the wider community to feel empowered and supported to navigate their thoughts and feelings and provide them with a safe space to discuss issues that are important to them, whilst having fun. Working with Albert and listening to his stories, Sarah will consider with the children ‘what would Albert do?’ and read the Albert books together to see if they would have done the same as Albert. They will consider what the consequences could or would have been if they did something different. Sarah and Albert value diversity and want to ensure that every child has the opportunity to share their ideas, without fear of ridicule. Sarah and Albert ensure that no child is ever ‘in trouble’ and their ideas are always considered and discussed.
Sarah has partnered with Albert to promote healthy relationships with friends, family and others so that children’s well-being can be positive, and it offers a strong protective factor against poor mental health. Albert and Sarah want students to feel that they belong and are valued within their school community. Albert and Sarah help the students to understand the importance of trust and mutual respect and model positive relationships with adults. Albert and Sarah want to support children with their friendships and to help them navigate feeling happy and secure. Albert and Sarah know that healthy relationships are positive and welcoming towards each other and don’t make others feel left out or lonely.
Workshops can be created specifically for your school setting. Albert works as a conduit between the children, school, family and the wider community.
Workshops can take place weekly/termly or as part of enrichment days.
This can be discussed with Alert Mouse Esq. to ensure the programmes are best suited to the school.
Bespoke programmes can be created for your school and your needs.
Sizes of the groups can vary, ranging from a whole class to small nurture groups targeting specific year groups, depending on the requirements of the school.
Workshop focus - scenarios created either from the Albert Mouse books or chosen freely by the schools, encompassing the following:
Albert and Sarah work in small groups to discuss 'thoughts and feelings', utilising the Albert Mouse books to discover what Albert would do and share the thoughts that children have in some very difficult and challenging times.
Children often find it difficult to articulate their thoughts and feelings and become frustrated when their views are not considered.
Albert offers a 'worry pocket' where children who are reluctant to talk to him can write him a note and slip it into his satchel for Albert to read later.
We can also supply an 'Albert Mailbox' that can be located somewhere in the school that will allow children to write a letter to Albert. These letters are then handled by a qualified person within the school. However, the school may choose to make Albert aware of the issue so he can talk with that child during his next visit.
Albert brings a unique friendship to the classroom where no one gets into trouble.
Albert Mouse Esq. charge a day rate (which is available on request), but these are flexible based on the needs of the school.
Albert Mouse Esq. is part of Break The Cycle Company Number 14265959
If you would like to talk to Sarah and find out how Albert could help your school, then please email Sarah using the link below.
“The children absolutely loved Albert's visit and are still talking about it now. I loved the enthusiasm they had, the questions they asked, and the recall they had of the story.
I would happily recommend having Albert come in!"
Jenny H. at Dartmouth Academy
Sarah has a Master's Degree in Youth and Community Work and her dissertation focused on the ‘power of conversation’.
"The opportunity to share time with others and connect helps to build relationships and trust. Due to the impact of social media on young people’s lives, the opportunity to just ‘talk’ has been reduced greatly and time spent alone during lockdown has affected the mental health and well-being of children and young people. Conversation helps embrace differences while building on common interests."
Sarah is also a Mental Health First Aider (MHFA England) and has attended Group 5 Safeguarding training provided by Devon Children and Families Partnership.
Sarah has been helping children and young people translate their inner experiences and thoughts into words for over 20 years.
In 2020 Sarah relocated to Devon and has continued to be an advocate for children and young people.
Break The Cycle C.I.C. is the culmination of Sarah's commitment to helping young people.
Sarah is very excited to be working with Albert Mouse and be part of his wish to help children who often don’t have a best friend like Big Tony to talk to.
“How do we change the world? One random act of kindness at a time."
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