We offer individual sessional support and group work to pupils of primary and secondary school age. We also provide counselling and psychotherapy to young people with a wide range of additional needs, for example, Special Educational Needs and Autism. We believe in a holistic, flexible approach, communicating closely with parents and teaching staff.
Counselling and psychotherapy sessions are provided in school so that young people receive the therapeutic support that they need in a safe and familiar environment.
Counselling and Psychotherapy
Our weekly sessions provide a supportive listening framework for pupils. Each session is tailored to the young persons’ needs and a wide range of therapeutic techniques are drawn upon allowing support at an age appropriate level.
The Oakdale Centre provides group work addressing specific whole school issues such as self-esteem, bullying, and stress, as well as more targeted interventions such as self-harm and eating issues. We offer a wide range of group sessions designed to help children and young people manage their own psychological wellbeing and also support the psychological wellbeing of their peers.
Please get in touch if you are interested in us providing any other groups sessions, workshops or training.
Arts therapies offer a non-intrusive way of engaging with children and young people, enabling them to cope with life challenges, build resilience, self-esteem and confidence. Therapy based on creative activities is known to have a positive impact on health and wellbeing and can reduce psychological issues such as anxiety and depression. Children are able to develop coping strategies, learn to understand and express their feelings in a healthy way, and reduce their social isolation by learning positive ways of relating to others.
Art therapy is a form of psychotherapy that uses art materials such as paints, clay and paper to communicate thoughts and feelings. Art therapy is a medium to address emotional issues which may be confusing and distressing.
Play therapy helps children to express themselves, explore their thoughts and feelings, and make sense of their life experiences. Play is a natural activity of learning, exploration, and communication for children, and is considered highly effective for helping children to ‘play out’ what they may find difficult to put into words.
Oakdale’s play therapists work with children of all ages in a safe and trusting environment to help process difficult experiences and increase self-esteem and confidence. The aim is to equip children with better coping mechanisms for everyday life and help them develop a more positive view of their place in the world.
Dramatherapy is a form of psychological therapy that applies acting and performance techniques within a therapeutic environment. Dramatherapy has as its main focus the intentional use of healing aspects of drama and theatre as the therapeutic process. It is a method of working and playing that uses action methods to facilitate creativity, imagination, learning, insight and growth. Oakdale’s experienced dramatherapist works with young people interested in this medium of therapy.
Music therapy is based on the therapeutic relationship established through engaging in live musical interaction and play between a therapist and client. Versatile by nature, a wide range of musical styles and instruments are used, including vocals, and the music is often improvised. Oakdale’s music therapists encourage young people to create their own music through which to explore and express themselves.
Training for teachers, parents and pupils
Oakdale’s team of trained psychological therapists provide bespoke courses and workshops for teachers, parents or pupils.
We offer a wide range of courses designed to support teachers in managing psychological wellbeing within school. Our courses are available as twilight sessions, during the day or as part of inset days.
We also offer psychoeducation workshops for parents and family members to support family health and wellbeing, as well as a range of courses designed to help children and young people manage their own emotional wellbeing and that of their peers.
Themes covered include:
Oakdale has a proven track record of supporting senior leadership teams, teachers and pastoral staff.
Support for Teaching and Pastoral Staff
We offer support for teaching staff, recognising the challenges that they face working in the education sector. Our coaching support allows teachers to identify blocks to progression, overcome challenges and feel empowered to lead in their classrooms. In addition, we provide counselling and psychotherapy for staff and can offer this as part of a bespoke staff wellbeing package (Employee Assistance Programme or ‘EAP’). This can help reduce absenteeism, workplace stress and staff turnover, as well as promoting a healthy workplace.
Support for Senior Leadership Teams
We understand the ever increasing demands upon senior school leadership teams. Our coaching provides school leaders with a safe, confidential space to share thoughts, worries, concerns, and explore issues of importance to you and your school.
Mindfulness in Schools
Oakdale has a dedicated team providing mindfulness in schools. The purpose of our mindfulness programmes is to build emotional resilience in children and adults in the school setting.
Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one’s attention to experiences occurring in the present moment, which can be developed through the practice of meditation and other training. Mindfulness is an astonishingly powerful tool for learning self-control that cultivates both improving quality of attention and demonstrable mental focus.
Studies with teachers undergoing mindfulness training showed reduction in burn out and psychological symptoms versus the control that showed an increase in those symptoms. Mindfulness trained staff are more resilient in dealing with tasks and problems and less emotionally reactive.
Mindfulness in the Classroom
We offer mindfulness training to primary and secondary school pupils from taster sessions to a full 6-12 week curriculum. These courses include ‘Paws b’ for primary schools and ‘.b’ (dot b) for secondary schools – evidence based courses developed by the ‘Mindfulness in Schools Project’ (MISP).
For children, the MISP courses have the look and feel of a typical curriculum topic. Written by teachers for teachers, widely evidenced, they have been comprehensively tested for suitability for children. The courses are designed to fit into the existing school ‘culture’ and work with the school’s existing messages and educational targets. The emphasis is on the classroom becoming a place of ‘paying attention, in a particular way’. We also work with classroom teachers to develop their mindfulness skills so that they can learn to teach mindfulness to their pupils.
Mindfulness helps young people…
This makes a significant contribution to a wellbeing strategy for your school.
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