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Girltopia

by Jane Bennett


Item:
9781920945497


Format: cards


Contents:
70 cards, 64-page booklet, all in a polypropylene box with tabbed dividers


These exquisitely designed cards have been created to encourage a spirit of inquiry, non-judgement, acceptance, curiosity, reflection and celebration among girls and women. Arranged in five suits, Girltopia can be used to help foster the many important conversations necessary to support girls as they mature to adulthood. Such conversations can be part of strategies for working with issues like body image, self-esteem, depression, eating disorders, sexualisation and bullying.

These strengths-based cards can be used with groups or individuals, by teachers, parents, youth workers, health workers, counsellors and pastoral care workers. Each card features thought-provoking phrases, intriguing images and gentle questions, all devised to help invite conversations with girls.

  • The 8 Me cards draw on the power of telling stories and feature simple sentence starters.
  • The 11 Doing cards describe an overarching mode of action and are intended to help girls build an appreciation of their own skills, preferences and individuality, as well as those of others.
  • The 21 Feeling cards offer gentle cues — simple words and triggers — to help foster emotional intelligence and assist girls to name, communicate and consciously navigate feelings.
  • The 13 Us cards invite thoughtful exploration of relationships using pithy questions and conversational prompts.
  • The 17 Body cards offer a rich array of questions and quotes for girls to deepen their understanding and appreciation of their female bodies. These cards have been devised to nurture grounded body awareness and positive body image. (Please note: some Body cards invite quite explicit discussion of women’s sexual anatomy; these cards can be easily put aside in contexts where they are not required.)

Girltopia presents a world of luscious plants, soulful animals and quirky architecture where girls and women are honoured for who they are and where they’re at. They aim to create a space where the risky edges of conversation and feelings can be explored in a lively and supported manner. After all, a girl’s life is very often a great adventure!


Reviews
“When it comes to supporting girls through puberty, nothing really replaces genuine, face-to-face discussions with a respected, open and skillful adult — whether a parent, teacher or counsellor, in a one-on-one or group setting. Girltopia is divided into five suits (Me, Doing, Feeling, Body and Us) and Jane chooses suits according to the activity planned and the rapport within a group. Although the cards are simple to use, she encourages facilitators to have some familiarity with the cards if possible. Jane often uses the ‘Me’ suit for icebreakers. They are great for helping people begin the business of ‘digging around’ in their own experiences and values. She sometimes asks participants to form pairs and to introduce themselves by choosing ‘Me’ cards as prompts for conversation. The ‘Us’, ‘Feeling’ and ‘Body’ suits are more often used once the group has warmed up and established trust. ‘We often don’t know what we don’t know when beginning conversations with girls,’ Jane advises. The cards — on their own or in combination — are terrific for opening conversational doors to discover the issues or subjects that young women want to address. Girltopia is also an ideal resource for teams whose members work with women or young people. The ‘Us’ cards can be used to stimulate workers’ thinking and reflection on their own views and experiences in order to address issues more confidently with students or clients. ‘They’re also a great way to hear from colleagues,’ Jane advises, allowing teachers or practitioners to reflect on the unanimity or differing perspectives within their teams.”



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