Story Links Intervention

Working with parents of vulnerable pupils

Story Links is a more specialised extension of Therapeutic Storywriting Groups  and  includes work with  parents of vulnerable pupils.

For many of these pupils the emotional difficulties that are getting in the way of their learning are related to attachment difficulties. Story Links uses therapeutic storywriting to address behaviour issues, support positive attachment and improve pupils’ reading.

It is a solution-focused systemic programme delivered in weekly sessions in which the parent/carer and the child are facilitated to co-create a story which is then used as the child’s reading text during the week.

The Story Links intervention involves pupils, parents and teachers in the co-creation of stories that address the pupils’ behavioural, emotional and social difficulties.

For some pupil’s it may be their behaviour that  gives rise to concern in school. However, these pupils may also have underlying emotional difficulties that can be related to attachment difficulties with their parents or carers. It is for this reason that the involvement of parents is a central aspect of the intervention.

The opportunity to express their internal world through story metaphor can be beneficial for all children but especially so for emotionally anxious children whose own life ‘story’ may have been a particularly painful or complicated one.

Story Links is wave 3 intervention with individual pupils and their parents, and focuses on developing emotional literacy alongside reading skills.

Story Links has been very effective here. It’s a valuable vehicle for working with parents of pupils at risk of exclusion and especially supports those pupils who also have problems with literacy.


Train to deliver the Story Links Intervention

Course content 

  • attachment theory and implications for learning in the classroom
  • strategies to include  the ‘hard-to-engage’ parent
  • emotional significance of story metaphor
  • establishing an emotionally containing environment for parents and pupils
  • delivery of  the 10 week Story Links intervention

Target group

SENCOs, Behaviour Intervention Teams, Educational Psychology Services, Looked After Children Services and other professionals working with parents of vulnerable pupils at KS 1 & 2.

Course duration: 

3 days, various start dates

Support materials: 

  • Book: Therapeutic Storywriting by Dr Trisha Waters, publ. David Fulton, 2004
  • The training course is supported by an online training manual: