Positive Feedback for In-House Training Day

The Story Massage Programme is recommended as an interactive, engaging and useful in-house training day. Would you like to know more? We take a look at a recent in-house training day at Woodlands Special School in Plymouth to give you an idea of what to expect.

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Families Share Story Massage in School Workshop

How do you run a successful Story Massage Workshop for parents/carers within a school setting? Here are some tips from Justine Horn, Depute Head, and Jennifer Monteith, nurture teacher, at Thorntree School in Glasgow. They say their recent event was a very relaxed afternoon with lots of bonding, positive touch and smiley faces!

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Using Story Massage for School Homework

Erin, aged 6, is our guest blogger today. Erin tells us how she wrote her own massage poem as part of a school homework project. She was first introduced to the Story Massage Programme on a Children’s Yoga Workshop run by a trained Story Massage Instructor. These are Erin’s own words.

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Positive Touch and the Emotional and Well-Being Curriculum

The Early Focus Project in Dublin has shared the Story Massage Programme as part of the Emotional and Well-Being Curriculum for the past three years. We talk to Melissa Hogan, Project Co-ordinator and Una Curran, mindfulness and well-being coach, about their award-winning work in helping children feel safe, secure, comforted and regarded.

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Story Massage Conference 2019 – Inspiration and Ideas!

Have you trained in the Story Massage Programme – either face-to-face or online? Do join us for our first ever Story Massage Conference to be held in London on Saturday 11th May 2019. There’s an amazing line-up of speakers and workshops with a chance to ask questions to our expert panel. What a brilliant opportunity to meet others, feel inspired and learn new skills.

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Story Massage Training Day in Beautiful Exmoor

We are looking forward to a wonderful day sharing the Story Massage Programme in Guiliana Wheater’s magical chalet in Porlock Hill, Somerset on 27th July 2019. This FHT accredited CPD day course is open to everyone interested in sharing positive touch activities with children and adults of all ages and abilities.   Continue reading

Pupils share Story Massage with Dementia Residents

Six pupils from Lochside Primary School in Montrose make weekly visits to a local care home as part of lessons in social skills. The hour long sessions include talking, singing songs, playing games and sharing Story Massage with elderly residents with dementia. And everyone is enjoying the benefits!

Learning Social Skills

The pupils, aged between 6 and 11, take an active role in planning each visit and help with decision-making for the variety of songs, games and massage stories they will share. It is a team effort with the group working closely together and supporting each other. Their nurture practitioner, Pam Davey, who is trained in the Story Massage Programme, encourages them to practice the massage stories on each other so they know the strokes and how to use a gentle pressure for elderly people.

As part of the social skills lessons, Pam helps them to develop an understanding of how dementia affects people and how to choose appropriate songs and activities. They also have a group discussion to prepare them for the sadness of decline in health and death of their elderly friends.

Spending Quality Time with Residents with Dementia

Pam Davey and Diane Inglis, another nurture practitioner at the school, have been taking pupils to visit Dorward House care home in Montrose every Tuesday morning for over a year. Each visit begins with a question prompt to start a discussion. Examples are: “Name 5 things that are red?” or “Name 5 things you have in a kitchen.” This helps the pupils and residents begin talking to each other and further encourages the learning of social skills.

Next they sing a song together. Popular songs include ‘Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star’ and ‘Mary had a Little Lamb’. Makaton signs are often used to accompany the singing. Then there’s a game of cards, dominoes or a sensory activity such as a playdough challenge. It is an interactive, no-screen, no-tech hour so the pupils are fully present and engaged.

Sharing Respectful Touch

The session ends with a Story Massage session which is always popular as many residents miss the comfort of positive touch, especially from a child. Pupils are taught respect for their elders. They ask permission to give Story Massage and say ‘thank you’ at the end. Traditional songs and poems can be easily adapted for Story Massage so everyone can join in. Pam and Diane have access to a whole variety of scripts from the training day, the Story Massage book and social media updates.

Staff from the care home also enjoy the sessions and comment on the big smiles on the residents’ faces.  They enjoy seeing the residents relax with gentle touch and the fun of sharing a story with massage strokes.  It brings a sense of calm and inter-generational connection for all involved. And the pupils gain self-confidence and self-esteem with positive feedback from the residents.

Building Positive Relationships

Pupils are encouraged to say ‘goodbye’ as they leave. Initially, they were rather shy. But now they make eye contact and many of the pupils choose to give the residents a big hug. This has been a big step for those who were rather fearful of the older generation before sharing activities together. They all enjoy looking back on the session, seeing photos and remembering the special moments during the session.

More about the Story Massage Programme

The Story Massage Programme combines positive, respectful touch with the fun and creativity of storytelling. Ten simple massage strokes form the basis of the Story Massage programme. These strokes have a name, such as The Circle or The Sprinkle, and an easy to recognise symbol making it accessible for all. It is a fully inclusive activity. No clothing is removed and no oil is used.

Would you like to train in the Story Massage Programme?

Would you like to train to use Story Massage in your work or home? We run a one day accredited training course held around the country for individuals and groups. These days can also be organised as in-house training sessions.  And we also have a popular online training option.

We teach you how to share the ten Story Massage strokes and work with you to adapt familiar stories and even create some sensory stories of your own. Ideal for Relax Kids coaches, teachers, SEN staff, support staff, therapists, Early Years practitioners, those working with people with additional needs, everyone with an interest in sharing positive touch activities with adults or children. All the information is here: Story Massage Training

Story Massage Training at The Ecology Centre, Fife

We are delighted to be running a Story Massage training day at the beautiful Ecology Centre in Kinghorn, Fife on Monday 20th May or Tuesday 21st May 2019. We are running two days as this course is so popular. This FHT accredited CPD day course is open to everyone interested in sharing positive touch activities with children and adults of all ages and abilities. Do join us to learn an innovative and simple approach to sharing sensory activities.  Continue reading