Dramatherapy with Children, Young People and Schools
Enabling Creativity, Sociability, Communication and Learning
Edited by Lauraine Leigh, Irvine Gersch, Ann Dix, Deborah Haythorne
Routledge – 2012 – 304 pages
Dramatherapy with Children, Young People and Schools is the first book to specifically evaluate the unique value of dramatherapy in the educational environment. A variety of highly experienced dramatherapists, educational psychologists and childhood experts discuss the benefits to the children and young people, and also in relation to the involvement of teachers, the multi-disciplinary team and families. This professional book offers a panoramic view to explain how through dramatherapy children and young people develop their communication skills, sociability and their actual desire to learn.
Detailed case studies demonstrate individual successes in youngsters experiencing a range of emotional difficulties and psychological needs. These studies include: conquering a fear of maths; violent behaviour transformed into educational achievement; safe expression of feelings for a sexually abused child; and where children are diagnosed with mental health disorders such as ADHD and ODD, where the benefits of dramatherapy with children and families are carefully described and evaluated, suggesting that this therapeutic discipline can achieve positive outcomes.
The practical advice and inspirational results included here promote a future direction of integration and collaboration of school staff, multi-disciplinary teams and families. Education and equality are high on the agenda, and the function of dramatherapy is not just as a treatment, but as an economically viable and valuable preventive therapy.
"This is a comprehensive and inspiring resource for practitioners and those responsible for the provision of appropriate emotional support to children in schools." - Anna Chesner, The British Association for Drama Therapists, UK
"I recommend this book to every dramatherapist, to every teacher, and to every health care administrator, because within its pages lies a vision of the future of education that we cannot afford to postpone. The many authors of chapters span the academic, clinical, educational, and research fields. This is an important book!" - David Read Johnson, Institutes for the Arts in Psychotherapy New York, USA
"A timely, comprehensive and accessible book; essential reading for dramatherapists working in schools and also for teachers, teaching assistants, learning mentors and others engaged in education. The complexities and difficulties in the lives of many children and young people are sensitively described and the creative practices of those writing will offer inspiration to all." - Pat Broadhead, Leeds Metropolitan University, UK
"I have seen the confidence and well-being of many vulnerable young people transformed through dramatherapy and related therapeutic approaches using the creative arts. This book takes an evidence-based approach to linking theory and practice, and will be an important resource for professionals across many disciplines working therapeutically in educational settings" - Professor Thomas AWN MacKay of Ardoch, CSci Psychology Consultancy Services - MacKay Associates - Critical Solutions
"an essential book for anyone working in education and especially government who are changing policies and funding. The book gives a clear exposition of the educational practice of dramatherapy and the underlying theories. Educational psychologists will understand the vital contribution that dramatherapy makes for children with learning, behavioural and emotional needs. The book is clearly and concisely written without jargon, that makes is accessible for teachers and therapists alike. It is also a very good read!" - Professor Sue Jennings, international dramatherapist and author
"thoroughly rewarding. It clearly describes how troubled pupils can be effectively helped, so that they are less stressed, have more fun and achieve better educational outcomes. The dramatherapy practice is a very welcome source of inspiration." - Dr. Alida Gersie, author of books about Storymaking and Change, freelance education consultant
"This book provides an insightful exploration of the role of dramatherapy with children, young people and schools. The content highlights the creativity and commitment involved in approaching this work with clear links to the evidence supporting dramatherapy as an important intervention for young people experiencing a range of difficulties. Case studies and clinical examples provide the reader with an authentic sense of the work, lending itself to clinical application for those working in the field" - Vicky Baldwin, Education & Practice Consultant, Institute of Mental Health
"The basic argument is that emotional learning is as important as academic learning. The book conveys how dramatherapy combines psychoanalytic understanding with physical and imaginative play in a way that engages directly with how the child experiences things. The case studies demonstrate how arts therapies like dramatherapy can help a troubled child or young person to manage their unruly or suppressed emotions in a way that allows them to achieve their full learning potential"- David Kennard, clinical psychologist and group analyst, UK
Part I: Introduction. Leigh, Dix, Haythorne, Dokter, The Role and Relevance of Dramatherapy in Schools Today. Jones, Childhood Today and the Implications for Dramatherapy in Schools. Holmwood, Stavrou, Dramatherapy and Drama Teaching in School: A New Perspective Towards a Working Relationship. Meldrum, Supporting Children in Primary Schools through Dramatherapy and the Creative Therapies. Part II: Case Studies. Dix, Whizzing and Whirring: Dramatherapy and ADHD. Shine, Fear, Math, Brief Dramatherapy and Neuroscience. Domikles, Violence and Laughter: How Dramatherapy Can Go Beyond Behaviour Management for Boys at Risk of Exclusion. Dix, All the Better to See You With: Healing Metaphors in a Case of Sexual Abuse. Carr, Romeo and Juliet and Dramatic Distancing: Chaos and Anger Contained for Inner City Adolescents in Multicultural Schools. Dooman, Looking for Meaning with Bereaved Families: Bring Back My Daddy and Other Stories. Court, Higley, Lousada, Education, the Playground Project and Elements of Psychodrama. Coleman, Kelly, Beginning, Middle, End, Beginning. Dramatherapy with Children who have Life Limiting Conditions and with their Siblings. Part III: Collaborative Partnerships in Schools and Beyond. Roger, Learning Disabilities and Finding, Keeping and Protecting the Therapeutic Space. Kelly, Bruck, Staff Sharing: An Integrative Approach to Peer Supervision. Mercieca, "I’m Not So Sure, Miss." The Concept of Uncertainty and Dramatherapy Practice within an Educational Setting. Trustman, Self-harm and Safeguarding Issues in the School and Classroom – A Partnership Approach. Brown, Dramatherapy and Clinical Psychology: Play and Reality for Autistic and Psychotic Children. Haythorne, The Charity Roundabout: One Model of Providing Dramatherapy in Schools. Part IV: Evidence and Outcomes. Haythorne, Crockford, Godfrey, Roundabout and the Development of Psychlops KIDS Evaluation. Greene, An Educational Psychology Service Evaluation of a Dramatherapy Intervention for Children with Additional Needs in Primary School. Andersen-Warren, Review of Dramatherapy and The British Association of Dramatherapists Research. Part V: Future Possibilities. Gersch, Educational Psychology, Listening to Children and Dramatherapy. Meldrum , A Model of Emotional Support in Primary Schools. Leigh, Holding the Family in the Heart of School. Haigh, Future Potential. Gersch, Conclusions. Haythorne, Some Useful Addresses and Websites.
Lauraine Leigh is a dramatherapist and teacher who has worked over 18 years with a range of children in the NHS and in mainstream and special schools and units, with behavioural difficulties, special needs and mental health diagnoses, promoting close communication with and support of parents and teachers around the child.
Irvine Gersch is Professor of Educational and Child Psychology at the University of East London (UEL). He is a chartered educational psychologist and chartered scientist. He is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society, The Royal Society of Arts and the Higher Education Academy. He is the Programme Director for the Professional Doctorate in Applied Educational and Child Psychology at UEL and a Director of Global Mediation.
Ann Dix is a freelance dramatherapist and supervisor. Prior to this she was manager of a multi agency support team in Leeds, working with schools, children and families. Ann was a drama teacher before qualifying as a dramatherapist in 1993.
Deborah Haythorne is the co-founder and co-director of Roundabout, the largest dramatherapy charity in the UK. Deborah qualified as a dramatherapist in 1985 and completed her research on dramatherapy with children with autistic spectrum disorder in 1996.