Over the past year, The Thrive Programme has launched an initiative to put Thrive into schools. We have already been successful with our book Thrive for Teenagers and it is our opportunity to bring effective principles of The Thrive Programme to a younger audience in relevant environments. Below is the write up of our work in three case studies in Scotland and the South of England.
The Thrive Programme is a psychological training programme that equips people with the self-awareness, skills and resources that they need to flourish in life. Rob Kelly’s programme combines his twenty-five years of clinical experience in psychotherapy with research from the field of positive psychology, resulting in a dynamic course that helps students to change their lives for the better. The Thrive Programme offers a host of benefits: behavioural, educational and therapeutic, and can be tailored to your school or setting.
The Thrive Programme is a six–ten week course that boosts students’ resilience, self-esteem and self-confidence. This offers educational, psychological and health-related benefits, both in the short and long-term. In addition to quantifiable benefits, students completing the Thrive Programme report advantages such as increased happiness, more self-reliance and even a calmer temper. The course is suitable for students from Year 7/Primary 7.
The Thrive Programme teaches students techniques in a meaningful, memorable way. Sessions are fun and interactive, making use of practical demonstrations, video clips and group tasks: they are deliberately not like a normal lesson, and this is one of the things that holds appeals for students. There is some written work and follow-up tasks, and schools often choose to recap learning during tutor time, for maximum impact. The course is suitable for all students regardless of literacy ability, and comprises a number of techniques and graphics that are memorable and ensure the course is easily accessible to all. Course materials include student workbooks and online resources for use on tablets or interactive whiteboards.
The Thrive Programme teaches you ‘how you tick’ and gives you methods and insights to build self-esteem and locus of control, known as ‘sense of power and control’ (SPACE) within the School Programme. Locus of Control is the extent to which you believe that you can impact on events affecting you, including educational success, self-confidence and emotional well-being. High self-esteem and a strong internal locus of control is implicated in educational resilience, stress-management and success in life after school. The Thrive Programme teaches students about this concept and teaches them to build a strong internal locus. The effects are dramatic.
The Thrive Programme has been tested in a number of schools in England and Scotland, with excellent results. The course can be used in a whole class setting or on an interventionist basis, for a small group or on a 1:1. The course must be delivered by a licensed Thrive Programme Consultant or a member of staff who has attended a Thrive Programme in Education accredited training course.
Case Report 1 – School in Eastern England
A six week programme was developed for six 13 and 14 year old students with behavioural, motivational and self-esteem issues. Most of the girls have challenging personal lives in some way (e.g. chronic illness, financial difficulties, parental divorce, parental physical/mental illness, social services involvement).
Each week session included a two-hour whole group session, which involved an informal and interactive discussion of the weekly topic and group and individual exercises.
Three members of the Pastoral Team at the school also undertook a training session with us. These members of staff then ran short mentoring sessions with the girls, 3 times each week during morning registration.
Sessions were based around a carefully designed ‘Thrive for Teenagers’ workbook. The workbook explained the basics of each session and outlined in session exercises. It also contained short homework exercises for the students to complete each day of the week in their own time. Having exercises to do in their own time also helped them to take responsibility for making changes.
The programme culminated in an outward-bound day trip, which was designed to celebrate the students’ efforts and success, as well as to provide them with physical and psychological challenges enabling them to further develop and process their new skills. Two follow up sessions also took place several months after the initial programme in order to help ensure that the students maintained their progress.
Students enjoying the outward-bound trip
Over the course of the programme, pupils made good overall progress towards their attendance, behaviour and achievement targets set by the school.
We also recorded changes in the students’ sense of control. After just five weeks, all the participants had improved their sense of personal control and were reaping the benefits and starting to thrive.
“Now I’m more confident and have a higher self-esteem and I’m starting to find it easier to share my problems and get help with them.”
“I think Thrive has been one of the best experiences I’m going to have as I will carry on using the techniques even when I’m an adult”
“Now I have a thrive attitude that makes me want to come into school, learn, and try my hardest to achieve my goals.”
Case Report 2 – School in Eastern England
A 10 week programme was developed for 17 year 8 pupils with behavioural, motivational and self-esteem issues. Each week included two interactive 1-hour group sessions with all students. Students also received individual sessions over the course of the 10 weeks. Again staff members undertook training with us, so that they could help reinforce the principles of the programme within the context of daily school life.
A simplified version of the ‘Thrive for Teenagers’ was developed, especially for this school, so that it was appropriate for the lower reading levels of the pupils. Pupils received this book at the end of the 10 weeks, to encourage them to recap the programme and implement the principles over the summer holiday.
The school provided data relating to the students progress over the course of the programme. The following chart documents the average weekly rate at which students received negative behaviour points, as recorded by a teacher, before and after starting the programme. Points were documented over the course of 29 weeks prior to the start of the programme and 10 weeks after the start of the programme. All students increased their percentage of green reports over the ten weeks.
The school also monitored students’ effort and behaviour whilst they were completing The Thrive Programme. The results (show below) clearly indicate how every single student improved in these areas. Furthermore, the students’ average locus of control score increased by 32% during this term alone.
Comments from students who completed the programme
“You can make the choice of how to react to situations.”
“This is something I want to use forever.”
“I am not arguing with teachers so much.”
Case Report 3 – School in Scotland
A five-week programme was developed for three groups of students. The first group included six 15-16 year old girls. The second group was composed of seven 1st year (11-12 year old) boys and girls. The third group was made up of of seven 2nd year (12-13 year old) boys and girls.
Every week, each group of students took part in a 1 ½ – 2hr group session and all students again also received individual sessions. The programme utilised the ‘Thrive for Teenagers’ workbook. A digital platform, which contained the book and further resources, was also trialled.
Comments from students who completed the programme
“The enthusiasm in the group has been good. I have learnt about self-esteem and self-confidence. I can stand up for myself now.”
“Thanks to the Thrive group I will be able to achieve more later in life in friendships and other achievements.”
“Thrive has helped me to know which way to feel. It’s made me feel good about myself.”
We’d love to get Bounce into your school! For more information, please get in touch and we will be delighted to discuss it with you in more detail, and help you to tailor the programme to your school or setting. We look forward to hearing from you.
Website – www.thriveprogramme.org
Rob Kelly – Thrive Programme Creator – firstname.lastname@example.org
Andrew Farquharson – Thrive Programme Consultant and Trainer. Andrew is also our dedicated Thrive Programme in Education Consultant – email@example.com