Taylor and Francis
'Moving against the grain? Investigating the efficacy of a touch-based intervention in a climate of suspicion'
'This article considers the implications of a small‐scale research project, undertaken by the authors, which used the example of the Massage in Schools Programme (a simple peer massage programme) to ascertain whether the planned use of touch‐based activity can support the growth of social and emotional skills in the primary classroom. Such claims are considered within the context of a modern society that is ill at ease with touch. Data, including observations of children and interviews with children and staff, were collected in two primary school classrooms pre, during and post the introduction of a six‐week massage programme, led by Massage in Schools practitioners. The findings of this project demonstrate that the number of social relationships reported by children did increase post intervention. The article goes on to consider the possible mechanisms by which this was achieved and features of the classroom context that may mediate the impact of the intervention. The authors conclude that a touch‐based intervention such as the Massage in Schools Programme may have a positive and potentially educational value for children and schools and support the growth of social and emotional skills'.
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'Massage in Schools Programme (MISP) – Evaluation in Northamptonshire TaMHS Project'
Evaluations of interventions between April 2009 - March 2011
'The combination of quantitative and qualitative results from the MISP evaluation that involved teachers, support staff, parents and pupils, suggests that MISP can have a positive impact on the mental health of pupils, especially in terms of their self-esteem, friendships, pro-social skills, conduct problems, and class becoming more of a team and being calm. There is some indication of increased impact on engagement with learning, including with children who are vulnerable to mental health difficulties'.
'An Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Peer Massage in a Primary School'
(Abstract of a report by Donna Davis for MISA)
The combined scores for both years showed a striking improvement of 54% in relation to difficulties, and 6% for pro-social behaviour in the Intervention classes, which contrasts with deteriorations in the Control classes of -7% and -11% for the same attributes. This would suggest that peer massage contributed substantially to the overall behaviour and wellbeing of those children who received it.