The Thrive and Grow Programme

Moving from primary to secondary school

Because every young person deserves the very best start

Moving to secondary school can be a really exciting, positive time with many opportunities opening up. But it also marks a change in the dynamics of friendships and family life. Routines will alter and a young person will take the first steps towards independence.

This transition is the first of a number throughout the teen years. Done well though, with careful thought and planning, it can provide a firm foundation for what is to come and help our young people flourish

We all want our children to thrive, no matter what stage they are at in their lives. All the academic accolades or sporting achievements in the world mean nothing if a young person is unhappy. By starting to think about the transition to secondary school now, we can plan a calm, considered move which helps smooth out as many obstacles as possible.

Inkpots has been running for almost ten years and in that time, I have supported many young people as they move on from Year 6. Working within both primary and secondary schools gives me a unique insight into what is expected of a young person. This has enabled me to develop a vibrant programme for 2022

Gill has an incredible knack of unlocking children’s worries and thoughts, allowing them to think things through and together come up with workable solutions. She models incredibly important life skills


In addition to the usual feelings around such a big step, we are – of course – still dealing with Covid. For some children, the uncertainty of the past two years may add to feeling of anxiousness about moving to secondary school too.

The Inkpots ‘moving to secondary school’ programme, Thrive and Grow, supports individual students make the move as positively and smoothly as possible. Thrive and Grow offers your child the chance to reflect on their time at primary school, celebrate friendships and achievements and look at some of the opportunities to come.

Because each young person is different, Thrive and Grow is a bespoke mentoring programme running from April to August and sessions can be booked to fit in with your family life.

Having gone through a number of transitional stages with my own sons as they have grown into adulthood, I know only too well how crucial the move to secondary school is.


My experience and mentoring training have enabled me to also develop a framework for Thrive and Grow. This provides us with a foundation to build on, but every mentoring session is still totally focussed on the interests and needs of the individual young person.

Thrive and Grow covers three main areas of the transition process:

Practical issues:

Many young people worry about the practical things involved in moving schools like getting to and from school, carrying books around with them, lunchtime plans and arrangements for clubs. At Thrive and Grow, we look at these right at the start and find simple solutions. We’ll also look at suggestions which we know have worked for previous Year 7s.

Positive approach:

It can feel that a lot is expected from Year 7 students and the gap from Year 6 can seem a very big one. But a positive approach helps, and part of this process is around building confidence and developing some strategies if worries start to appear.


One of the challenges young people may unexpectedly face when they move schools is how differently reading is approached. Many miss the group reading of primary school and their own reading for pleasure suffers. We’ll look at ways of supporting reading in particular – and creative projects in general. I know how important creativity for young peoples’s emotional and mental health. So, I do all I can to encourage it here at Inkpots.

The Thrive and Grow package

Thrive and Grow consists of four 45-minute sessions held on Zoom. These will always be with Gill. The first three sessions will cover the key components of the programme: practical issues, mindset and approach and creativity.

The fourth session will pull all these strands together to form a set of plans and ideas which will be developed with the young person, so they feel prepared and equipped for a great start in September.

BONUS: an additional session can be added as a boost to just run over things as a final reminder before the start of term.

I really enjoy the way my daughter looks forward to her sessions with you. I love the way you encourage her and introduce wider dimensions to her life


The dates for all the sessions can be booked to fit in with your family commitments any time to the end of August. We suggest that the sessions are booked at regular intervals though to get the best out of the programme. After each session, parents will receive informal feedback from me to keep up-to-date with what’s been planned and discussed too.

The cost of the programme is £185. If you would like to book a booster session too that is an additional £40. We are also pleased to offer payment plans where the cost can be spread over two or three payments. These details can be discussed in confidence with Gill at the time of booking.

Ready to go ahead? You can use the payment button below to book onto the programme. Gill will then be in touch to make all the necessary arrangements.

If you would like to know more about the programme, Inkpots and Gill, let’s book in for a 20 minutes no obligation chat. You can do this by booking in here or emailing

Thrive and Grow

Why Gill?

“I started Inkpots in 2013 and for six years I ran after schools’ clubs and holiday and schools’ programmes in seven schools across mid Sussex, UK. During those years, I worked with hundreds of children and young people, and ran thousands of workshops and sessions.

During the lockdowns because of Covid, I took Inkpots online and started to develop creative mentoring services alongside workshops with authors and artists too. Inkpots currently runs as a hybrid model of face-to-face and online groups. I also work closely with my local secondary school providing regular mentoring sessions right across the year groups. This means I am in school several times a week throughout each term.

I am a fully trained youth mentor and a publications editor and writer of many years’ experience. I am also a City and Guilds tutor for English.  Inkpots is fully insured, and I have an enhanced DBS check.”

If you are interested in this programme for your child, but have some questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me on or 07771 231563.