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Title: Exploring the benefits of delivering arts-based mindfulness groups and methods in school settings
Authors: Folino, Daniela
Keywords: Holistic Arts-Based Program;HAP;school setting;mindfulness skills;group work
Issue Date: 4-Sep-2019
Abstract: Children and youth with significant mental health challenges often experience academic and social-emotional difficulties at school. Early intervention is linked to improved mental health and academic outcomes in school-aged youth. School boards across Ontario are adopting a universal mental health promotion model where group programming is delivered to full classrooms as a way to enhance wellness in schools. For my advanced practicum, I implemented the Holistic Arts-Based Program (HAP) within the Rainbow District School Board with support from various social workers, educators, and educational assistants. HAP is a group program that teaches youth mindfulness skills and concepts through arts-based and experiential methods. The HAP program is an enjoyable and engaging way to teach mindfulness to youth. My goal was to explore the benefits of delivering arts-based mindfulness groups and methods in school settings. HAP proved to be an excellent program to implement in schools as a way of fostering student resilience, teaching coping skills, and building self-esteem, and self-awareness. Through artsbased and experiential methods, students can learn a variety of tools and strategies that will enhance their wellbeing. Delivering HAP in various schools allowed students to build connections with peers and their teachers. HAP also promoted inclusion, diversity, empathy, and respect for others. Art-based methods enabled students to express themselves and learn about one another in a creative, meaningful, and interactive way. School administration should consider implementing arts-based mindfulness groups in classrooms when selecting universal promotion programs for their schools. Schools are the ideal place to deliver effective and strengths-based group work.
Appears in Collections:Social Work - Master's Major Papers

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