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Thrive Approach

Based on established neuroscience, attachment theory and child development, the Thrive Approach supports children with their emotional health, well-being and social skills, all of which are needed in order for learning to take place.


Children cannot always put their needs into words, but the way children behave can tell us a lot about how they are feeling. For some children there may be a clear reason why they need extra support. This may be due to recent events such as bereavement, family break down or it could perhaps be due to an identified medical condition. For others, there may not be any obvious trigger as to why they are finding some aspects of school and/or home life difficult.


The Thrive Approach is based on growing evidence that the brain develops through personal and social interaction. The relationships that we have are fundamental to who we grow up to be. Our brain is built through trillions of brain-cell connections made by our sensory experiences. Positive experiences enhance brain connections, and sustained negative experiences can restrict them. Through simple, repeated activities over time, within a safe and caring environment with trusted adults, Thrive aims to re-map these brain-cell connections to enable emotional development and support a child’s ability to enjoy life and learn.


Working with parents and class teachers, our Thrive Practitioners carry out assessments of identified children’s social, emotional and behavioural needs which help us to build action plans of targeted strategies and activities to help children re-engage with learning and life. These plans can be implemented on a 1-1 basis, within a small group, or a whole class.


A Thrive assessment helps us to identify underlying emotional developmental needs, in order to support and meet those needs. As well as offering new ways of dealing with challenging behaviour, the Thrive Approach also offers both teaching staff and parents useful approaches to working with and helping any child who is experiencing emotional upheaval, whether short or long term. This is not a quick-fix, and takes time and commitment to see results. However, we can see that from research – and our experiences -  it is clear that early intervention to support children’s needs is the most effective approach to preventing issues becoming more problematic in later life.


A Thrive action plan is a strategic list of activities tailored to support a child’s identified social and emotional learning targets. The activities are very often arts-based activities designed to help the child improve their self-esteem, become more resilient & resourceful, form trusting & rewarding relationships and to build compassion & empathy.


Action plans might include activities such as the following:


  • Sand play
  • Strategy games
  • Role play
  • Sensory exploration
  • Plan, Do Review activities
  • Problem solving games and activities


Action plans are regularly reviewed and children are re-assessed, so that progress made is monitored and targets are always current.


If you would like further information on The THRIVE Approach, please go to: .


Alternatively, you can speak to our schools THRIVE practitioners: Mrs Hill, Mrs Harris & Miss Forbes.