Play and Creative Therapies in Primary Schools Sept 2019
In partnership with Julie West from Unearth and Tracey Anne Wood Counselling and Psychotherapy, Live Wild have recieved an amazing £50,000 of funding for our new project ‘Play, Nature, Connect’. It will take place over the next 2 years across Primary Schools in Calderdale.
Selected schools who wish to develop and extend a whole-school approach to emotional wellbeing are being offered the opportunity to participate in this innovative pilot programme. This exciting offer includes a flexible menu of evidence-based creative therapies, with individual outdoor and inside Play and Family Therapy and Nature-Based Group Play Therapy. This combined ‘Play Nature Connect’ offer from Live Wild is a whole-school approach with peer-to-peer massage forming the foundation for everyone, group work for selected children and 1-1 work for a small number of individual children.
Peer to Peer Massage
An inclusive programme of positive touch that has been tried and tested in schools and children’s organisations throughout the world. Peer massage is carried out fully clothed and given by the children to each other. It is restricted to the back, head, arms and hands and only given and received with each child’s permission. The massage moves will be taught by therapists qualified in peer massage and once all the moves are learned by the children, sessions will then be led by the class teacher. This ensures that the benefits continue to be experienced by the whole school throughout the whole year. Peer massage has been shown to improve the overall emotional wellbeing in schools, calmer classrooms with improved concentration, increased confidence and self-esteem and a reduction in bullying and aggressive behaviour.
Nature-Based Group Therapy
Based on the principles of play therapy, forest school and eco-psychology, this therapeutic intervention is a term-long weekly half-day group for a small number of selected children. This is a powerful opportunity for these children to express current feelings, heal past trauma and build resilience. They will experience a sense of unconditional acceptance, improved relationships and a connection to the natural environment. This group helps children develop their inner resource and sense of self that will carry forward for the rest of their lives. This approach has been shown to raise self-esteem, build confidence, improve attainment and attendance and children’s enjoyment of school.
Individual therapy will be offered to a small number of children whose distress requires specialist therapeutic support. These children will be offered individual or family therapy from a varied menu of options such as play therapy, filial therapy, emotional freedom technique (tapping) and 1-1 nature-based therapy. This will be determined by the individual needs of each child.