Primary-school-based art therapy: A mixed methods comparison study on children’s classroom learning
Holttum, S. and McDonald, A. 2020. Primary-school-based art therapy: A mixed methods comparison study on children’s classroom learning . International Journal of Art Therapy. https://doi.org/10.1080/17454832.2020.1760906.
|Authors||Holttum, S. and McDonald, A.|
Background: In the UK an estimated one in ten primary school pupils have diagnosable mental health problems which may impact their education. Aims/context: This study examined a primary-school-based art therapy service for children experiencing social, emotional and mental health difficulties to assess the intervention’s acceptability and possible changes in classroom learning. Methods: A mixed methods before-and-after study was conducted with 25 children in art therapy and a comparison group of 25 children per subject for reading, writing and maths attainment. A focus group with 10 teachers and interviews with 37 children were used to examine perceptions of art therapy and classroom learning. Results: Academic attainment was similar between the art therapy and comparison children. Both groups’ learning rate resembled that of national minimum expectations. Children and teachers perceived art therapy to be helpful for engagement with classroom learning, relationships with teachers and peers, and learning time. Conclusions: Further research is needed to develop this primary-school-based art therapy programme, assess transferability, and examine wider educational outcomes. Implications for practice: Primary-school-based art therapy may be particularly helpful when it is perceived as: a safe place, sessions being social and fun, facilitates coping strategies, expressing, thinking and talking, as well as making artwork.
|Keywords||Art therapy; Primary school; School-based; Children; Mixed method research; Social, emotional and mental health (SEMH); Learning; Education|
|Journal||International Journal of Art Therapy|
|Publisher||Taylor & Francis|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI)||https://doi.org/10.1080/17454832.2020.1760906.|
|Publication process dates|
|Accepted||23 Apr 2020|
|Deposited||18 May 2020|
|Output status||In press|
Accepted author manuscript
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